Women in Law

A full-day workshop designed to help female attorneys develop the skills and disciplines related to leadership and business development

In association with:


  • 11 June, 2019
  • 08:45 - 08:45
  • 222 N LaSalle, St #300, Chicago, IL, 60601, United States ()

Additional taxes may be applicable


Pre-workshop Legal Mocktail networking reception

The pre-workshop Legal Mocktail networking reception (included in your workshop registration) will be taking place June 10th at the offices of Gould + Ratner, beginning at 5:30pm.


8:30AM Registration & Refreshments

9:00AM Introductions: Workshop Facilitators

Catherine Alman MacDonagh, JD, FIRM Guidance; Chief Enthusiasm Officer,

Mocktails LLC — AND Mark Beese, President, Leadership for Lawyers, LLC


Keys to Success for Women Lawyers: Highlights from LSSO’s Women Lawyers Studies

A continued focus on developing selling skills is not a luxury. Rather, it's a necessity. Since time is always precious and individual’s strengths and situation are unique, a "one size fits all" approach is ineffective. There are, however, gender issues that make it difficult for women be successful in their marketing and business development efforts. This program uncovers the secrets to a building and growing a practice for women lawyers. The content is based several studies on sales and business development issues for women lawyers conducted by the Legal Sales and Service Organization and incorporated in the book, The Women Lawyer’s Rainmaking Game: How to Build a Successful Law Practice (Catherine Alman MacDonagh and Silvia L. Coulter). This opening session contains practical information and the steps women can take to become (or remain) a successful lawyer in today's competitive market-place. Participants in any career phase will find the experience highly relevant and immediately useful.

Topics include:

  • The Importance of Attitude
  • How to Invest Time Wisely
  • The Leadership Effect
  • Overcome Barriers


Effective Introductions: Your Verbal Business Card

Your verbal business card (aka the “elevator speech”) is your introduction and your description of who you are and what you do. It is your opportunity to define (or redefine) your personal brand or your reputation. Use this time to craft (or refine) yours, try it out, and make it even better. Then practice using it during the morning coffee break and the networking luncheon.


Growth vs. Fixed Mindset

Change happens. How we react to change is critical to our success. Everyone has a preference as to how they initiate and deal with change. Understanding your style, and the style of others, can help you be more effective in leading change and building a coalition to sustain new initiatives. Attendees will look at recent research by Carol Dweck on how one’s mindset and motivation can help us be better as lawyers, rainmakers and leaders.

10:50AM Morning Coffee Break


Change Style Indicator: Assessment and Debrief Influence and Persuasion

Influence and Persuasion: Participants will also learn and practice several models for persuading others and gaining influence in their firms, including developing a persuasion strategy, using springboard stories and SCARF, a neuro-leadership approach to persuading others.

12:30PM Networking Luncheon

The facilitators will encourage attendees to enjoy lunch with people they haven’t met, then switch seats to meet others for dessert.


Marketing vs. Sales

This session introduces participants to the marketing cycle and sales process, both graphically and conceptually. It addresses the concept of “selling” profes-sional services by defining exactly what it means the steps involved at each stage. By laying out the specific phases of the sales process and detailing what activities should be undertaken at each juncture — from planning to retaining and growing clients — lawyers and the professionals who support them have a clear roadmap to follow and an understanding of what can and should be done to advance to the next step.


Buyer Personality Types and Communication Styles

We know that similar styles equal greater reward in forging relationships. Learning how to assess and interact with others based on their style and type improves the ability to prepare for and conduct meetings with colleagues, clients, prospects, and referral sources in a particular way to quickly build rapport, establish trust, and enhance communication. This segment features a combination of lecture and exercises that involve watching video interviews of well-known figures, creating a highly effective and engaging learning experience.



Building resiliency (the ability to bounce back) is a critical attribute for lawyer-leaders. Participants will learn about four components of resiliency and discuss how they can integrate them into their demanding schedules.

3:15PM Afternoon Coffee Break


Developing a Personal Vision

Law firm leaders need to have a clear, compelling and challenging vision of their career and of their firm. Through a vision exercise and dialogue, plus a discussion of next steps and key takeaways, participants will articulate their vision and outline steps to achieve it after the workshop.


Q&A/Closing Remarks

Catherine Alman MacDonagh, JD, FIRM Guidance; Chief Enthusiasm Officer, Mocktails LLC — AND Mark Beese, President, Leadership for Lawyers, LLC

Full Description

Check out the latest podcast from #womeninlawotr and Allison Stewart which features the facilitator of our Women in Law workshop - Catherine Alman MacDonagh, JD CEO and Founder of Legal Lean Sigma Institute. Catherine talks about what it takes to become a rainmaker in a law firm and offers terrific advice on how you can set yourself apart to create an authentic brand. Listen now: https://lnkd.in/ejqpR4A

Download the full program here

Apart from legal acumen, what skills are most critical to women attorneys’ success and advancement?

Most respond, “leadership and business development.” A continued focus on skills development is not a luxury. Rather, it's a necessity. Since time is always precious and each individual’s strengths and situation are unique, a "one size fits all" approach is ineffective. There are, however, gender issues that make it challenging for women be successful in their marketing and business development efforts. This program uncovers the secrets to building and growing a practice for women lawyers.

This full-day workshop is designed to help female attorneys develop the skills and disciplines related to leadership and business development. We recruited the legal profession’s top leadership and business development gurus to create and facilitate an intense one-day workshop that includes a workbook of leadership and business development resources to help you implement your action plan after you leave the session.

We’ll explore how to develop personal leadership skills, starting with one’s mindset and attitude—how we react to change and how to lead and sustain change. We will discuss how to increase one’s resiliency and grit—two skills critical to success in today’s law firm environment. In the context of the law firm, we’ll look at how to be more persuasive, influential and how to expand your network internally and externally. Finally, we’ll discuss how to develop a clear, compelling and challenging personal vision.

We will reveal the skills and tools that are most helpful to women building a book of business, from:

  • Improving communication skills
  • Learning how to identify and adapt to other people’s communication style
  • Conducting effective business development meetings
  • Building an effective network
  • Filling your pipeline and developing a personal business development plan

The workshop is aimed at women attorneys who are preparing for partnership as well as those who are currently partners.



Come meet your fellow workshop attendees the night before and participate in The Legal Mocktail, an experiential learning program that teaches networking skills.

The Legal Mocktail is a unique training exercise that takes place in two parts. At the event, you will be given Mocktail materials, including a profile that contains very basic information that you will use (supplementing facts from your own life) during the exercise. Each profile is strategically designed to have something in common with a number of others in the room. The goal for you is to find those people by using their networking skills. The first part replicates a cocktail networking reception. As you might expect, there will be food and drinks, so the program takes place in a fun, lively setting. In the second part of the program, the group “debriefs” and receives feedback and suggestions for improving networking

The pre-workshop Legal Mocktail networking reception (included in your workshop registration) will be taking place June 10th at the offices of Gould + Ratner, beginning at 5:30pm.


Top industry speakers

Catherine Alman MacDonagh

Catherine is a former corporate counsel and law firm executive. She now teaches and provides training and consulting services with a focus on marketing and business development, strategy, process improvement, project management, and operational and process excellence. In her practice, FIRM Guidance, she serves as “trusted advisor to the trusted advisors,” whether training, coaching, or developing competitive advantages. She is also Chief Enthusiasm Officer of Mocktails LLC, which offers experiential networking training programs, including The Legal Mocktail. A Legal Lean Sigma® Black Belt and a certified Six Sigma Green Belt, Catherine is the CEO and a Founder of the Legal Lean Sigma Institute, which offers consulting and the first and only process improvement and project management certifications, courses, and workshops designed specifically for the legal profession.

Catherine is an adjunct professor at Suffolk Law School and at George Washington University (Master’s in Law Firm Management) and a frequent guest lecturer at other academic institutions. She is the author of Lean Six Sigma for Law Firms and the co-author of The Woman Lawyer's Rainmaking Game and The Law Firm Associate's Guide to Personal Marketing and Selling Skills. She is a contributing author to six books: Redefining Matter Management: A Best Practice Guide to Improving Processes and Profitability; The Lawyer’s Guide to Project Management; The Bigger Picture: Driving Client Value Through Collaboration; The Lawyer’s Guide to Process Improvement; and The Procurement Handbook.

Catherine is a founder of both the Coalition of Professional Services Providers and the Legal Sales and Service Organization, which presents the annual LSSO’s RainDance Conference. Honors and awards Catherine has received include: Fellow, College of Law Practice Management; Legal Marketing Association Hall of Fame (the association’s highest honor); Boston Business Journal’s 40 Under 40; two years on the prestigious MLF 50 (Marketing the Law Firm Top 50) List; and several Legal Marketing Association Your Honor Awards. 

Mark Beese

Mark Beese, President, Leadership for Lawyers, LLC and Adjunct Faculty, University of Denver School of Law Mark is President of Leadership for Lawyers, LLC, a consultancy focused on helping lawyers become better leaders and business developers. He provides training, coaching and consultation to firms in the areas of leadership development, business development and marketing with law firms across North America. His clients range from small, single office firms to global Amlaw 100 firms.

Mark serves as on-call faculty at the Center for Creative Leadership, primarily involved in the design and delivery of bespoke and open enrollment leadership development programs for professionals, including lawyers, accountants, consultants and executives. He focuses on issues of change leadership, team development, influence, cross-generation issues, collaboration, innovation and design thinking. He is a Fellow of the College of Law Practice Management. In 2014 he was inducted into the Legal Marketing Association Hall of Fame, one of only 25 leaders to have received this honor.

He is the former Chair of the Lawyer Leadership Committee of the American Bar Association, Law Practice Management Division. He is also a professional member of the International Leadership Association, the National Speakers Association, the Legal Marketing Association and the College of Law Practice Management. Mark has more than 25 years experience as a chief marketing officer for professional services firms. He has served as Chief Marketing Officer for Holland & Hart, a 450-attorney law firm based in Denver, Director of Marketing for the New York law firm of Hodgson Russ and Director of Marketing for Kideney Architects in Buffalo, NY. Mark is also an adjunct faculty member at the University of Denver Sturm School of Law, where he teaches Strategic Marketing and Business Development.

He is certified and trained to administer several assessments, including the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), DiSC, the Change Style Instrument (CSI), Influence Style Indicator (ISI) and the Leadership Practices Inventory (LPI) among many other assessments and coaching tools. Mark has received numerous awards including “Marketing Director of the Year” from the Marketing Partner Forum, the “IQ Award” for innovation by the Boulder County Business Report, five “Your Honor Awards” from the Legal Marketing Association, the PR Legal News Award and the ABA Law Practice Management Magazine Edge Award.

Mark received his B.S. and M.B.A. (cum laude) from the University of Buffalo. He is a former international board member of the Legal Marketing Association and past president of the Rocky Mountain Legal Marketing Association. He is a past chair of the Marketing Committee of Terralex, an international association of law firms in 93 countries. He served as a faculty member of the Marketing Directors Institute and is a frequent speaker at the Marketing Partner Forum and Legal Marketing Association conferences. He has spoken to dozens of LMA and ALA Chapters throughout the United States. He is a frequent contributor to law practice management publications.

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