Communication is crucial to a lawyer’s success. Whether you are engaging with a client, colleague, or the judiciary, it is imperative that your message is clear. However, as we are exposed to new forms of technology, we continue to complicate the traditional model of communication.
In this digital age, lawyers have an unlimited number of mediums to communicate their messages. Email, Facebook Messenger, face-to-face, VR, Slack, texting, snail mail, FaceTime, landlines, and more. The list goes on and on. These new mediums create dialogue between constituents who may never meet in-person. They also allow our messages to be accessible to anyone and everyone with access to the internet.
Though these new technologies create efficiency and a sense of globalization in our world, they also bring many setbacks. Setbacks that can become problematic when the law doesn’t clearly communicate all of the advancements of society.
With more opportunities to communicate to a global audience, mediums are filled with noise. Noise that can prevent your message to find its intended receiver. And noise that can discriminate and express hatred towards individuals and entire populations.
Through our weekly blog posts, news items, e-newsletter, and all of our educational programming, the Commission fights through that noise to offer the legal community insight into the changing legal profession, and remind our readers of the importance that civility and professionalism play in our personal and professional lives.
As lawyers, we are leaders. To create and inspire change, we need to communicate clearly, civilly, and in line with our code of ethics. Below, our team has shared our own tips for effective, ethical, and empathic communication, as well as, a few pieces that challenged our team to think differently.
We hope you take these words to heart and continue practicing what we preach.
Using Effective, Ethical, and Empathetic Communication
- Can lawyers and judges be (online) friends? States remain split over taking “friendships” into the social media context. So, should legal professionals steer clear of online communication or proceed with caution? Lawyers, Judges, Social Media: Can We Just Be (Online) Friends?
- As the new year rolls out, should we consider instituting codes of kindness in our workplaces? Not only might it benefit us as individuals, but behaviors such as forgiveness, empathy, compassion, and respect can also improve productivity in our organizations. Try A Little Kindness
- Be intentional when using social media. We can stop implicit biases in their tracks when we engage ideas that challenge our beliefs. Can We Avoid the Feedback of Loop of Social Media?
- A simple “thank you” can have a big impact. Don’t Underestimate the Power of Gratitude.
Content That Inspires Change
- As we prepare for 2018, we must reflect back on the innovations and initiatives of the current year . . . for they each will greatly impact what is to come in the new year. 5 Things to Watch in the Illinois Legal Community in 2018.
- With more than half of the United States’ jurisdictions on board, what will come of the state-specific bar exam? Will the UBE become the universal standard? More Than Half of US Jurisdictions Have Adopted the UBE.
- Rumor has it that in the next few years, Chicago may have its first public law school. What will that mean for aspiring legal professional in the Windy City? Chicago’s First Public Law School? UIC and John Marshall Talk Merger.
- Former Commissioner of the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism uses her law degree to help others understand the unwritten rules of the real world of work. Meet this month’s #LawyerSpotlight: Tina Gunsalus: C. K. Gunsalus and Associates
- This program gives diverse, female law students an opportunity to interview with leading legal employers, and allows employers to hire some of the nation’s best and brightest female attorneys without doing any of the legwork. DAPP Job Fair Opens Doors For Women of Color Law Students.