Forthcoming September 2013 • ISBN: 978-1-59460-591-8 • LCCN 2013018721
Tags: Legal Profession
This concise and practical book is designed to help current and future legal professionals develop the cooperative and collaborative skills needed to work effectively with others in legal settings. The book shows that modern legal professionals frequently work in small groups and teams in a diverse range of legal contexts. Thus, this text focuses readers on the interpersonal skills needed to work more comfortably and effectively in these settings, beginning with increased self-awareness as well as the need to understand and appreciate the different communication and decision-making styles of others. The text is not a cliché-laden plea for teamwork in all circumstances. Instead, the book explains: (1) when group work is more beneficial than individual work; (2) when a small work group project is more appropriate than a team project; and (3) when some teams are likely to outperform others. The fundamental premise of the text is that when collaborative work is performed appropriately and thoughtfully, the advantages of collaborative work significantly outweigh the disadvantages. In addition, the book uses a wide range of examples—including the growing use of virtual legal work groups or teams—to help readers maximize the benefits of working collaboratively, while minimizing problems. Incorporating the best contemporary research on group dynamics, conflict resolution, and decision making, this pioneering book is designed to be used as a supplemental text in a variety of law school or paralegal courses: from doctrinal courses—in which small groups or team projects facilitate learning—to capstone, seminar, clinical, or legal writing courses in which students are expected to collaborate to produce high quality work.