Meredith Bell: Communication Skills for Strong Leaders

In this episode, Steve Fretzin and Meredith Bell discuss:

  • Challenges with communication and why the way we talk to each other matters.
  • Communication between the generations in a workplace.
  • Managing expectations and understanding values and work ethic.
  • Why positive feedback is key to relationships and company culture.

Key Takeaways:

  • Many challenges we face are because we come into conversation with assumptions about those we are speaking with.
  • If we slow down enough to ask people what is important to them, listening, then acting upon that information is going to make a difference, no matter who you are talking to.
  • Agreements are talked about by both parties; expectations are full of assumptions without communication.
  • To give more valuable positive feedback, you, as a leader, need to notice more, notice those things you really value, and share that with your team.

“When you think about the generations, if we’re willing to listen, to ask questions, and listen to learn what’s important to this person, then I think we can break down some of these barriers around perceptions and assumptions that we have around whatever the age group is that you want to identify as troublesome for you.” —  Meredith Bell

Get a free audio copy of Steve’s book “Legal Business Development Isn’t Rocket Science” here:

Thank you to our Sponsors!


Get Staffed Up:

Get Visible:

Episode References: 

About Meredith Bell: 

Meredith is the Co-founder and President of Grow Strong Leaders. Her company publishes software tools and books that help people build strong relationships at work and at home. Meredith is an expert in leader and team communications, the author of three books, and the host of the Grow Strong Leaders Podcast.

Her latest books, co-authored with her business partner, Dr. Dennis Coates, are Connect with Your Team: Mastering the Top 10 Communication Skills, and Peer Coaching Made Simple. In them, Meredith and Denny provide how-to guides for improving communication skills and serving as a peer coach to someone else.

Connect with Meredith Bell: 


Grow Strong Leaders Podcast:






Connect with Steve Fretzin:

LinkedIn: Steve Fretzin

Twitter: @stevefretzin

Instagram: @fretzinsteve

Facebook: Fretzin, Inc.



Book: Legal Business Development Isn’t Rocket Science and more!

YouTube: Steve Fretzin

Call Steve directly at 847-602-6911

Show notes by Podcastologist Chelsea Taylor-Sturkie

Audio production by Turnkey Podcast Productions. You’re the expert. Your podcast will prove it.


[00:00:00] Steve Fretzin: Hey everybody. Good news. I have a free copy of my new audio book. Legal Business Development isn’t rocket science. 250 plus easy and actionable ways to grow your book of business in less time and with greater results. Just go to Fretzin. com slash audio book. And get your free copy today and enjoy the show.

[00:00:24] Narrator: You’re listening to Be That Lawyer. Life changing strategies and resources for growing a successful law practice. Each episode, your host, author, and lawyer coach, Steve Fretzin, will take a deeper dive, helping you grow your law practice in less time with greater results. Now, here’s your host, Steve Pretzin.

[00:00:46] Steve Fretzin: Well, hey everybody. Welcome to Be That Lawyer. I am Steve Fretzin. The host of the show, I’m so happy you’re here. Uh, this is a show all about helping you to be that lawyer, someone who’s confident, organized in a skilled rainmaker. And that comes in a lot of different ways, shapes and forms. We’ve got business development, we’ve got marketing, time management, leadership, and the list goes on and on and on.

[00:01:06] Steve Fretzin: And the idea here is that every single episode, you should have actionable takeaways that you can implement to grow your business, to help your firm, to be the best possible lawyer and person and human that you can be. And, uh, my job, I guess, is to interview wonderful people like Meredith. How are you doing, Meredith?

[00:01:22] Steve Fretzin: I’m

[00:01:22] Meredith Bell: great. Thanks, Steve. So good

[00:01:24] Steve Fretzin: to see you again. Yeah, we got into, uh, more of like a networking thing last time we got together and we were trying to, you know, beat off and give each other all kinds of contacts. It was, uh, just classic networker mode we were in, I think. That’s

[00:01:37] Meredith Bell: true. Yeah. Yeah. That’s sort of how my mind naturally flows.

[00:01:41] Steve Fretzin: Yes. You might as well. I just listen to people and I immediately start connecting dots. It’s like hard to not do that. Another part of the show, everybody, networking. So there you go. We love, and I continue to get feedback that the listeners love the quotes of the show. So I’m not going to stop that piece of it.

[00:01:59] Steve Fretzin: And here’s the one that, uh, Meredith was so kind to send me. It’s a little bit long, but it’s good. It’s really good. It’s worth where it’s worth the, worth the words in the weight. So here it is. Curiosity is the most powerful relationship creator in the world. It is an amazing mix of love and genius, compassion and intelligence.

[00:02:16] Steve Fretzin: Commitment to understand and assist the other person. Curiosity is what is expressed and love is what is felt. And that’s Steve Chandler in his book, How to Get Clients. So first of all, awesome quote. And second, talk to me about why that resonates with you so, so much.

[00:02:33] Meredith Bell: It resonates with me, Steve, because. I, curiosity is a hallmark of what I do when I am talking to someone, I’m listening for what’s important to them, you know, whether it’s a prospective client, a podcast guest, you know, someone, I’ve just met a new connection, it’s paying close attention and then building on what they say to ask another question.

[00:02:58] Meredith Bell: And what hit me with this quote is not many people do this. And so when you take the time to show genuine interest in someone, I know Chandler says what somebody feels is love, caring, you know, here’s somebody that cares about what I have to say, and that is one of the quickest and strongest relationship builders that I know of.

[00:03:25] Meredith Bell: Yeah,

[00:03:26] Steve Fretzin: I totally agree and the, the level of, of people talking over each other and the one upsmanship as I call it is, uh, without, it’s out of control. So the idea that you could, that you could sit in your, in your, in yourself and just be a listener and, and ask great questions and, you know, there’s an iceberg in front of you and you want to get to the bottom of the iceberg by asking as many questions as you can to understand them and what their interests are, where they’re going.

[00:03:50] Steve Fretzin: Absolutely critical. I think that’s probably a great lead into then, you know, how you got into the, the, the world that you’re in. And for everybody listening, Meredith Bell is the president of grow strong leaders and, um, talk to us a little bit about how you got into the, into the world of leadership and, and coaching and consulting.

[00:04:07] Meredith Bell: Well. I started out in public education first as a teacher, and then I got my master’s and worked into different school board office positions as a manager and a director. And I realized I didn’t do politics very well, and I didn’t do bureaucracy at all. So I ended up leaving there, but one of the things I had done that I loved was training other teachers.

[00:04:31] Meredith Bell: And this whole area of communication was always fascinating to me. So I started my own consulting firm, doing training for leaders and also individual contributors around how do we communicate with each other so we play well together and get the work done. And I guess that’s been my passion for all these decades.

[00:04:54] Meredith Bell: And I was a solo consultant for a while. And then I met Denny Coats who became my business partner in 1991. And we brought in a second partner or third partner. So there were three of us and we’ve now worked together for 32 years. And we did initially a lot of training ourselves. And then in the mid nineties, we decided we wanted to reach more people.

[00:05:16] Meredith Bell: So we created assessment and development products. That had been used now worldwide and so that’s our focus is helping to eliminate the drama, the pain that often happens in the workplace simply because people don’t know how to talk to each other clearly and directly. So that’s our mission is to create happier workplaces where people are able to achieve that kind of communication.

[00:05:44] Steve Fretzin: And it almost feels like, and I know this is this is me being old, however. There’s never been a worse time to communicate or a harder time to, to communicate and people are struggling with that. And again, in the legal space, you’ve got work from home. So the, the camaraderie that existed before and the learning and mentorship is, has dissipated considerably.

[00:06:07] Steve Fretzin: So why, why do you think or believe that communication and feedback is so critical today, maybe more than ever? Well,

[00:06:14] Meredith Bell: I think it’s always been critical, but you’re right. The remoteness that happened with COVID caused people to not see each other as often. And you didn’t always know what was going on in the background.

[00:06:30] Meredith Bell: And so there are just more challenges that have happened. And now there’s sort of controversy in some companies about how many days people. Need to be back versus how many days they want to be in the office. So there are a number of things. So the, the challenge with communication and why it’s so is because we often come to conversations with assumptions about somebody’s motive, about what they intended.

[00:06:58] Meredith Bell: You know, of what agreements we thought we had that weren’t clearly laid out, and then we get disappointed or frustrated when deadlines are not met. So, it impacts every aspect of the workplace in terms of productivity, in terms of relationships, even turnover. You know, people leave companies when they feel that they aren’t being valued, and that comes down to how we talk to each other, how, how people communicate.

[00:07:27] Meredith Bell: With each other. So I think it’s critical in this day and time when people are ready to jump ship if things aren’t just, you know, exactly the way they’d like to see them line up and a lot of the time it goes back to or leadership and or communication.

[00:07:47] Steve Fretzin: And the other, the other piece of this that I’m seeing dealing with, you know, law firms and working with managing partners as I do the generational gaps and the fact that there may be four generations working in the same law firm, all with completely different value systems and cultural systems and communication styles.

[00:08:07] Steve Fretzin: Right? So how, how difficult has that been? And what are some thoughts for the, for the people that struggle with

[00:08:13] Meredith Bell: that? Well, I think that age is one area. There are all kinds of other areas. But when you think about the generations, if we’re willing to listen, to ask questions and listen to learn what’s important to this person, then I think we can break down some of these barriers around.

[00:08:36] Meredith Bell: Perceptions that we have, assumptions we have about whatever the age group is that you want to identify as troublesome for you, then I would say, take a step back and look at what beliefs do you have about individuals in that age bracket? And are you projecting those onto the individuals in that age range that work in your organization?

[00:09:03] Meredith Bell: Have you taken time to get to know them as a person? Because that’s one of the key things that we hear consistently from people in the younger generations, is they want their work to have meaning. They don’t necessarily want to rise up through the ranks. But more have opportunities to grow and learn. So if we slow down enough to ask them, what’s important to you?

[00:09:30] Meredith Bell: What goals do you have? Where do you see yourself in a year or five years? How can I support you in your journey? What do you need? Asking questions like that and then listening and then acting upon them is huge, no matter what age the person is. I think that that’s just so, so key and fundamental. To not assuming there’s an issue with someone in a particular age bracket.

[00:09:58] Steve Fretzin: Yeah, and I, and I understand from the senior leaders perspective to that, you know, the Gen X or the, or the boomers work ethic was different and the way that they approached work and the way that they approach their job was different than today. Doesn’t mean that people are valuable and don’t can’t contribute and aren’t important, but you’re so on the money that they don’t really understand the other generations and don’t ask the questions and don’t, and that just makes everything more challenging.

[00:10:28] Meredith Bell: You know, and there are differences, you know, in terms of value and work ethic. And I think stating clearly before you hire someone, here’s how we do work around here, you know, is that something you are willing to do? So that the person being interviewed can evaluate, am I willing to put forth. That kind of effort.

[00:10:52] Meredith Bell: And once you’ve hired them, having those kinds of regular conversations, especially when you see a disconnect between where you are expecting them to be and where they’re actually performing, sometimes we avoid having those conversations. And then it ends up in some kind of explosive exchange Where there’s no repairing the situation.

[00:11:18] Steve Fretzin: Yeah, but the setting and agreeing on expectations is so critical and maybe not happening. We’re just, we all have stars in our eyes when we meet someone young and new and fresh that we believe can do the job. And we don’t maybe ask enough questions to understand their point of view, their world view.

[00:11:36] Steve Fretzin: Their work ethic and, and does it match up and did their, you know, did their individual culture match up with the culture of the firm? And then it ends up being a bad, a bad hire and there’s, and there’s a lot of costs associated with that.

[00:11:49] Meredith Bell: Absolutely. And, you know, I really like to speak in terms of agreements versus expectations because a lot of times with an expectation, we haven’t clearly stated what that is, nor have we gotten the other person to commit to doing whatever that was.

[00:12:07] Meredith Bell: And so we can say, all right, I need this by Friday and we don’t give them a chance. We don’t ask them, is that realistic? You know, uh, is there anything else you’ve got on your plate that’s going to interfere with you meeting in that deadline? And then when they don’t meet it, it’s like, well, why didn’t you tell me?

[00:12:26] Meredith Bell: So it’s this sitting down together and you can lay out, here’s what I need. Will you be able to do that? Can you commit to do that? So before you end that conversation, you’ve both agreed that not only is the person going to do it, you’re going to help support them in the process so that both of you have clarity.

[00:12:49] Meredith Bell: About what is, is being done. And I’ll tell you, most adults much prefer to agree to something than be told. You’ve got to do this, you know, even it’s rebellious.

[00:13:02] Steve Fretzin: Oh, sure. Yeah. I have a teenager. So I’m, I’m in the middle of it every day.

[00:13:07] Meredith Bell: Yeah. No, we’d be sent that. And so that can build up, you know, uh, tension and frustrations on both sides.

[00:13:17] Meredith Bell: Yeah.

[00:13:18] Steve Fretzin: Hey everybody, here’s a fun fact for you. According to Routers, the top three challenges preventing law firm growth are time lost to administrative tasks, winning new client business, and a spike in complexity of new technology. Another fun fact, Lawmatics solves all three, no contest. Here’s our December special to get your first month free of Lawmatics.

[00:13:38] Steve Fretzin: Just go to www. lawmatics. com slash one dash month Dash free to get your free month. Thanks and enjoy. As you all know, finding amazing employees can be the toughest job for any law firm leader. You deserve to run the law firm you’ve always dreamed of, but you can’t get there without a great team. To get staffed up, they will help you by staffing your law firm with incredible full time offshore executive assistants, legal assistants, marketing assistants, and much more.

[00:14:09] Steve Fretzin: The best part, they will find you a highly qualified English speaking VA based in Latin America for only a fraction of the cost. Locally. At Freson, we use gett, staffed up for marketing person, and you know how good our marketing is. Learn more at gett staffed. that lawyer.

[00:14:27] Get Visible Digital Marketing Agency: Lawyers, there’s an easy way to boost your law practice.

[00:14:32] Get Visible Digital Marketing Agency: Partner with GetVisible, the digital marketing agency that makes you stand out. Meet Sarah, an awesome lawyer but a terrible marketer. GetVisible helped her build a powerful website and boost her online visibility. Now she ranks high on Google, gains clients through ads and engaging content. Tired of feeling insignificant?

[00:14:51] Get Visible Digital Marketing Agency: Make it rain. Visit GetVisible. com and stand

[00:14:54] Steve Fretzin: out. And when mistakes happen, which, you know, ultimately they always do, is there a way to provide constructive feedback when someone has created a problem for you or for someone else? And how is that best laid out?

[00:15:08] Meredith Bell: Yes. You know, Steve, I think that’s one of the key issues that happens at work, is because people, you know, we don’t teach this stuff in school, and so everybody does the best they can, but sometimes it doesn’t get the results we hope for.

[00:15:26] Meredith Bell: So, first of all, if somebody’s made a mistake, choosing the timing of giving the feedback I think is so important. You know, are you really angry and upset? If so, give yourself time to calm down. And then is the other person in a place where they can hear you? So once you’ve said yes to both of those, then sitting down and being very clear about what the specific behavior was.

[00:15:55] Meredith Bell: But even before you get to that, affirming positive things about that individual so you have context for it. You’re not just criticizing them. You’re affirming their value up front and then pointing out this specific situation. What was it they specifically said or did that caused a problem? And then being very clear about what the impact was.

[00:16:19] Meredith Bell: What was the consequence on you, on the group? Whoever it had a negative impact on and then getting them to understand what that is and listening to them to say, okay, so what are your thoughts about this to get them to talk about from their perspective? Why do they think it happened that way? And then being clear about what you would look for in the future.

[00:16:46] Meredith Bell: If something similar happened, how would you want them to handle it? And then getting that agreement from them and commitment, yes, I recognize this. And also, if there’s something they need to do to make amends to someone. Are they willing to do that and will they commit to do that? So that you have made, made clear what’s the behavior we’re looking for going forward.

[00:17:12] Meredith Bell: And they’re not confused or have any doubts about what that is, what it is you want from them. So having that laid out, you know, in advance before you have the conversation and being willing to listen to them, because again, we can make assumptions about why they did something. But we may not know, we don’t know what’s going on, maybe in their personal lives or something else that contributed to the behavior we just saw.

[00:17:40] Steve Fretzin: And if, if it’s a moment of growth, a moment of connection, you know, kudos, what if it isn’t? What if it’s, there’s a warning sign, the person isn’t taking responsibility, is pointing fingers, is not willing to engage in that conversation in a, in a, in a meaningful way? Any, how does somebody handle that? Is that a?

[00:18:02] Steve Fretzin: Is that a deal breaker? Is that, is that, how do you, how do you handle the tough, tough, tough, the tough conversation?

[00:18:07] Meredith Bell: Well, if somebody’s not willing to engage, we’ve got an issue here about, do they belong in this organization? Right.

[00:18:14] Steve Fretzin: Okay. But let’s say they’re willing to engage, but it’s, it’s not them owning it and taking that feedback in a constructive way.

[00:18:21] Steve Fretzin: It’s again, the, the opposite.

[00:18:23] Meredith Bell: Pushing it back. Yeah. I think it goes back to, you know, asking questions. And trying to help them develop some empathy, understand what it was like on the other side, you know, what was going on. If it was you personally, you, you can take ownership for how you felt, what impact it had on you, so that you can discuss what you need from this person going forward.

[00:18:51] Meredith Bell: And, you know, we have to remember, we can’t really overtly change another person. What we need to do is be clear about, to get the work done, this is the behavior that I need from you. Are you willing to do that? I think that’s where we have to take responsibility. What is it we need from this person that we’re not getting?

[00:19:13] Meredith Bell: So that we can find out. Are they willing to commit to doing it? And if not, what do they see as the options? You know? Or even, what would you do if you were in my shoes and we were, situation was reversed? How would you respond if I were putting up the resistance that you’re giving me? That’s one way of helping them learn how to see things from another person’s perspective.

[00:19:41] Steve Fretzin: The other side of it too is, you know, and I came up, you know, getting a compliment from my lawyer father was about the most challenging thing to, you know, for him to compliment me on something, anything at all. And I feel like now, my life is, I have a very hard time giving compliments unless they’re just clearly earned and deserve.

[00:19:59] Steve Fretzin: However, my wife is someone who. Uh, appreciates and enjoys, you know, strokes and positive feedback and positive commentary and I’ve changed. I’ve adapted and I’m better at it now and certainly, you know, have had to do that. But why is it so important for leaders to give positive feedback as a, as a part of their role?

[00:20:18] Steve Fretzin: In helping people develop and helping build, build that culture, those relationships.

[00:20:23] Meredith Bell: I love that question, Steve, because everyone wants to know they matter. Everyone has a need to feel I’m making a contribution. I’m being noticed. And if we just assume, well, I’m paying them, that ought to be enough and not point it out.

[00:20:43] Meredith Bell: It has a discouragement to it, especially if we’re quick to criticize because Ken Blanchard, who everybody knows from the One Minute Manager always said, you should be praising five times as much as you criticize. Well, that requires the leader to notice, to pay attention, and to be genuine about it. So we don’t want to be phony and, you know, and also it’s important to be very specific.

[00:21:12] Meredith Bell: So if you notice someone stayed an extra hour or filled in for somebody, it’s, it’s kind of raising your radar. So you look for things they do right, not focus on where did they miss the mark. And, and giving them that very specific feedback. Part of it can also be just thinking in your mind, what is it I value about this person?

[00:21:35] Meredith Bell: So I have that attitude of gratitude and appreciation for that individual. And when you bring that kind of energy to an exchange, you’re going to be noticing more. And comment, hopefully commenting on the things you see that you really value. And if you haven’t made a practice of this, it might catch some people off guard initially.

[00:22:00] Meredith Bell: But if you’re very genuine about it, and it is specific on something that someone did, it goes so, um, so far in creating goodwill, commitment from others when they see, Oh, I appreciate that. And from a very practical point of view, you’re more likely to get the behaviors you want. And you affirm those because people will pay attention to that and they will do more of what it is You’re saying you want

[00:22:34] Steve Fretzin: and I almost feel like it’s a one two punch of what you said earlier and what you just said meaning The idea that you’re going to ask questions and really get to know someone and what their motivators are and what’s important to them combined with the positive feedback and the strokes and, and, and maybe even rewarding them not monetarily, if you know that they’re, that they’re, they’re driven not by money, but by recognition or they’re driven by something else in their life, that’s important to them and rewarding them in that way, maybe giving them some time off and, or taking the, you know, taking them golfing and spending time with them, whatever it might be.

[00:23:09] Steve Fretzin: Maybe. Might be kind of like the perfect, the perfect storm for a leader to be successful with their underlings.

[00:23:15] Meredith Bell: In fact, you could simply ask somebody. What is it that you would most value, you know, cause some people hate public recognition. They’d much rather it be done in private, whereas others bask in mad.

[00:23:30] Meredith Bell: Yeah. They are raised in front of other people, but to have those one on one conversations where you find out what is it you’d prefer, if I notice that you’ve done something well, is that something you’d want everyone to know about or would you rather me handle it privately? Those kind of questions keep us from making mistakes.

[00:23:48] Meredith Bell: In terms of different personalities and what people would value, but I guarantee you every single person who works with you and for you will value that positive feedback. I just can’t emphasize that enough.

[00:24:05] Steve Fretzin: Okay. So, so then we’re, what are some tips for receiving constructive feedback? So others will be willing to give you such feedback in the future.

[00:24:13] Steve Fretzin: How does that play out?

[00:24:15] Meredith Bell: That one is a tricky one too, because our natural defenses jump in, right? We want to justify, explain, rationalize why we did what we did if somebody comes to us with feedback. So the very first thing to do is, is counterintuitive. It’s to listen without getting defensive. And then it’s to thank them coming to you and sharing that information.

[00:24:41] Meredith Bell: Because if you look at feedback as a gift, as something where you had a blind spot where you had no idea this caused a problem for someone. Now you’re aware of it and you can do something about it because most of us do not want to step on other people’s toes on purpose, right? Yeah. And so to thank them and then apologize if that is in order, if you did something personally, you know, to them, or if you found out it.

[00:25:09] Meredith Bell: They’re relaying to you what someone else was upset about to go to that person and apologize to make amends and then ask if there is Damage that’s been done. What can I do to make this right for you because our relationship is very important And then the magic is to make a commitment of what you’re willing to do And then follow through later, because almost nobody does this.

[00:25:35] Meredith Bell: Actually, most people don’t do any of these. Right? I was everything you, everything

[00:25:41] Steve Fretzin: you just said doesn’t matter because no, it doesn’t anyway. No, these are, this is all

[00:25:45] Meredith Bell: so important. It is, but this follow through is really quick. It is really important too, because what you want to do is go back and ask the person.

[00:25:53] Meredith Bell: How am I doing now? Let’s say they pointed out in a meeting that you always call, you know, tend to favor this person or that person and you ignore others. And so you start making an effort to include more people in the conversation. So you could go to the person that brought this up to you and say, are you noticing any difference in how I’m leading the meetings?

[00:26:13] Meredith Bell: I’m really working on this and I wanted to know, are you seeing anything different? So what you’re doing is reminding them, I made a commitment. I’m making an effort. And I value your opinion that is ruled.

[00:26:27] Steve Fretzin: Yeah, really, really great. Talk to me just in kind of wrapping things up before we get to our game changing podcast.

[00:26:34] Steve Fretzin: The, you know, you’re big into assessments. I love assessments. I feel like they’re totally underutilized for hiring and training and improving communication. Why are assessments and those those types of tools and the ones you can certainly talk about the ones you that you’ve created. Why are they so important to help?

[00:26:52] Steve Fretzin: Organizations in this case, law firms to be successful.

[00:26:56] Meredith Bell: Well, most assessments help the person better understand themselves. So, a self assessment, say a personality style assessment, helps them see their areas of strength and what might become roadblocks for them. We have a tool that’s a 360 feedback product, which means You are sending out a survey to get input from others who have first hand knowledge of your behavior, they have experience working with you, and they’re going to give feedback about certain behaviors, often in the area of communication, maybe how you lead meetings, and then that’s all consolidated into a report where the ratings are anonymous, but they’re aggregated together, and so the person receiving that report understands Where their strengths are as perceived by others and where they’re causing problems and this helps them become aware of blind spots That they had no idea about before and then they have the opportunity to make changes Yeah,

[00:28:00] Steve Fretzin: but it’s all stuff that typically goes under the radar and everybody’s just kind of biting their lip But you know in the room instead of it coming out in the open because it because it’s anonymous that makes it much easier for you to get Honest feedback that could actually make real change.

[00:28:13] Meredith Bell: And we have guidance up front for the people who are going to serve as raters to help them give, if they’re going to be writing comments, in addition to giving numerical ratings, how to write a comment that’s going to be useful and helpful to the person not seen as just, you know, criticizing them for writing or if it’s easily

[00:28:33] Steve Fretzin: identify themselves, you know, you want to stay anonymous.

[00:28:37] Meredith Bell: If you focus on the behavior you’d like to see, that is much more helpful to the person in getting a picture of what is it people want from me. Versus what I’ve been doing

[00:28:49] Steve Fretzin: just so wonderful I think everything that you’ve shared has been spot on and it’s clear that you have an expertise in these areas that Um that needs to be You know talked about and that’s why I think uh, you’ve written books and you’ve got this podcast I don’t if you want to just take a moment to mention the the podcast.

[00:29:07] Steve Fretzin: I think it’s called grow strong leaders podcast

[00:29:10] Meredith Bell: Yeah, grow strong leaders where I interview Leaders who are committed to their own growth and development, as well as helping the people around them become more productive and also happier in making their contributions. I’ve had some just fabulous conversations.

[00:29:30] Meredith Bell: 250 now, so I would encourage people to check that out. Just some brilliant, brilliant people that are in the workplace as well as other thought leaders and experts who have so much to share to help us become better leaders.

[00:29:45] Steve Fretzin: Yeah, but that’s not your game changing podcast. That is the rising leaders podcast, which is Mark J.

[00:29:52] Steve Fretzin: Silverman. Um, can you talk about that for a moment?

[00:29:55] Meredith Bell: Yes. Mark is a coach. Who works with a lot of different leaders who are either at the executive level are moving in that direction and he’s, he’s just an amazing. Human being and also a fabulous podcast host. And in fact, I’ve invited some of the guests that were on his show to be on mine because.

[00:30:18] Meredith Bell: He, he has, uh, just a, such a genuine, open, transparent style of interviewing where he talks about his own mistakes and, and brings out just richness from the guests. So I think your listeners would really value. Some of his experiences as well as the kinds of guests that he brings on his show. Yeah.

[00:30:40] Steve Fretzin: Wonderful. And there’s a number of, between yours and Mark’s, there’s a couple of very good podcasts to check out for those law firm leaders listening right now or future leaders. As we wrap up, want to take a moment to thank our, our wonderful sponsors. We’ve of course got Get Visible helping you own it on the digital side, growing and marketing your law practice.

[00:30:58] Steve Fretzin: Of course, we’ve got Lawmatics, uh, again, marketing, automation, and advanced, um, Um, the pipeline management for, you know, taking your current practice management system to the next level. And of course, get staffed up who’s helping people virtually get full time VAs in place. And I’ve got my guy, Sergio working day in, day out, helping me grow this business.

[00:31:19] Steve Fretzin: And I think every day that I have him and he’s wonderful. If people want to get in touch with you, Meredith, they want to hear more about you. They want to network with you. You’re wonderful, wonderful networker. And I enjoyed that initial chat we had. Uh, they want to talk about assessments with you. What’s the best way for them to reach

[00:31:36] Meredith Bell: you?

[00:31:37] Meredith Bell: Sure. Two things, uh, growstrongleaders. com. Talks about our books, our products has a contact me form. I’ve got my phone number and email address right at the top. And I’m also on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. I do a lot on LinkedIn and I’ve started, uh, publishing a newsletter on LinkedIn called grow strong leaders.

[00:31:59] Meredith Bell: Also where every other week I publish an article that I think your readers, your listeners, excuse me, would find valuable as readers. Yes. Yes. Connect with me there and sign up or subscribe for the newsletter.

[00:32:13] Steve Fretzin: Thank you for being on the show and sharing your wisdom and just such great content. I know there’s a lot of people listening that are going to have to go back and write down the four or five steps and then some of the other vernacular that you use to get it down because I think what you’re saying makes it, you know, it’s easier than them figuring it out on their own.

[00:32:29] Steve Fretzin: So, you know, I might as well learn, you know, do do it. Do what you’re being told in this case, but just just thank you so much. I appreciate you being, uh, being my guest. Well, thank

[00:32:38] Meredith Bell: you. And if they want to see in more detail, our book Connect with Your Team has ten communication skills with all those steps mapped out.

[00:32:47] Meredith Bell: So that’s an easy way to get the details about each of those skills. Oh, nice.

[00:32:52] Steve Fretzin: And where’s that located?

[00:32:54] Meredith Bell: That is on Amazon. Okay. It’s easy. Okay. Link to Amazon, uh, to the book directly from our website, prostrongleaders. com.

[00:33:04] Steve Fretzin: Okay. Wonderful. And that’ll be in the show notes as well, everybody. So thank you, Meredith.

[00:33:07] Steve Fretzin: Thank you everybody for listening. Um, you know, every single time I get on this show and I’m talking to someone wonderful like Meredith, you know, there’s opportunities for you to learn and grow and develop and, uh, to be that lawyer, someone who’s confident, organized, and a skilled rainmaker. Take care, everybody.

[00:33:23] Steve Fretzin: Be safe. Be well. We’ll talk again soon.

[00:33:29] Narrator: Thanks for listening to Be That Lawyer. Life changing strategies and resources for growing a successful law practice. Visit Steve’s website, Fretzin. com, for additional information and to stay up to date on the latest legal And marketing trends for more information and important links about today’s episode.

[00:33:49] Narrator: Check out today’s show notes.