Business Development Coaching for Lawyers

Business development coaching for lawyers is a superior practice to traditional business development training programs that generally apply a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach where lawyers invest precious time, often a few days with the expectation that they will magically leave the business development training and suddenly build a practice. While Business development (BD) training for lawyers will undoubtedly contribute to a greater understanding of business development it will not change the behaviour of lawyers which is the critical missing piece. In essence, it’s the equivalent to using a screwdriver to hammer a nail. It’s the wrong tool.

On the other hand, Business development coaching for lawyers may not be a silver bullet but it is a highly effective methodology to support lawyers to make sustainable behavioural change over time.

Structured to be delivered over a 6 to 12-month period, Collective Intelligence’s business development coaching program, delivers the necessary resources, methodology and encouragement for lawyers to build high performing business development habits. Our proprietary business development coaching methodology integrates group learning dynamics with individualised coaching sessions to foster the necessary behavioural change to produce high performing habits over the long term that get results.

Group Coaching

Collective Intelligence have a team of highly experienced and qualified executive coaches who facilitate group coaching conversations with 6-12 participants. The group element of business development coaching for lawyers is a powerful part of the Collective Intelligence methodology, and it allows for several key elements to take place including:

Normalising how people feel

Whatever roadblocks a lawyer faces in conducting business development activities, chances are someone in the group has had or is experiencing similar issues. By providing a safe space to share experiences and ideas, groups are able to validate feelings and explore assumptions and internal beliefs to assist lawyers to overcome common challenges.

Sharing collective wisdom

Peer to peer learning is another function that group learning delivers. Individuals benefit from the collective intelligence of the group – learning from one another as well as the BD coach.

Encouraging cross referrals

For good reasons, lawyers can be reluctant to cross refer a client to a peer if they don’t know that person well or their peers’ capabilities. Group coaching provides a rare opportunity for lawyers who may not usually collaborate to get to know another, build trust and understanding of each other’s capabilities which inevitably supports greater referrals across departments and specialisations. Internal referrals are not only in the client’s best interest, but also the firms because it makes clients more ‘sticky’.

Instead of waiting for a client to request services, professionals learn to be proactive in identifying business opportunities for peers to help clients and facilitate introductions to clients where appropriate.

Individual Coaching

The second vital element of our proprietary business development coaching for lawyer’s framework is individual coaching. The key advantages include:


Most people are reluctant to share private fears or anxieties in a group setting for fear of judgement by others. Individual coaching sessions provide a safe environment where lawyers can confidentiality reveal concerns or fears they may feel uncomfortable sharing in an open group coaching environment.

Individualised Support

Every lawyer enters the program with different goals, experience and business development skills. Individual coaching sessions provides each lawyer with the opportunity to receive individualised coaching tailored to their specific situation and development aspirations.

Business development coaching for lawyers works because it delivers relevant support and accountability over time which helps each lawyer to shift their mindset, build new skills and develop the required BD activities into their routine in order to grow their practice. Sheep dipping lawyers through a business development training workshop simply doesn’t work because it isn’t designed to change behaviours and build sustainable habits. The outdated process of giving lawyers business development training is akin to giving someone intending to climb Mt Everest a day pack filled with protein bars and Gatorade. Sure, they will come in handy, but they certainly will not get them to the summit! Similarly, business development training will not deliver the sustainable shift in behaviours that lawyers require to be successful at business development.

At Collective Intelligence we employ a team of highly experienced and qualified executive coaches and advisors who specialise in building high performance habits. We support lawyers and legal firms in achieving success outside of traditional business development training for lawyers through our propriety coaching programs. We know good habits drive good outcomes, and our coaching-based approach gets results.

Our BD Accelerator Program and BD Catalyst Program were designed for professionals to help them win work without having to sell. We think it makes sense, common sense.

Visit the links below or contact us for a no obligation conversation to learn how the team at Collective Intelligence might partner with you to help your firm and its lawyers build stronger business development habits, win more work and have more fun doing so!