Post-Law Day #31: Saying, “N..n..nn…no.”

A whole month has gone by since I started to make my post-law transition and I’m finding that one of the hardest parts of the transition is saying, “No” when people ask me for legal advice.

That’s because, for nearly 40 years, I’ve been saying, “Yes”, and my instinct is still to go immediately to the “legal answer” to their questions.

And it’s not that I’ve forgotten all my law over the past month. In fact, my reading and writing have probably taken me deeper into some aspects of it.

I think it’s really about being intentional and being committed to working in a different paradigm and modality – a different way of relating to legal knowledge and the constraints law places on people…

…And it’s also about tuning into new voices, new influences, new and different ways of experiencing the old, familiar knowledge. That’s maybe the most exciting part. It’s also the scariest.

I can see it will take me a while.

So, if you ask me and I say, “No”, maybe we should still talk. Maybe there’s a different question – perhaps a better question. One that can lead to a better answer.

Staying resolute

Businessman & Newspaper

 

 

Post-Law Day #25: Identity crisis?

One of the things I enjoy to do is to read aloud. At the moment, I’m reading Diana Wynne Jones’ “Year of the Griffin”. I had to chuckle when I came across this priceless passage, which spoke directly to my post-law transition.

“Are you a fighting griffin then?” Elda asked.

“Not really,” said Flury.

“A lawyer then?” said Elda.

“Not particularly,” said Flury.

After the chuckle, it came to me that DWJ is inviting us to appreciate that knowledge, skills, and experience developed in one field can, with a little imagination and magic, be applied in another… and with a fresh perspective.

What a wonderful thought! That we can be not particularly a lawyer. I think that’s what I am becoming. Would that there were more of us!

Staying resolute

Tiger Smelling Flower

Post-Law Day #24: Reflective Practice

Great news! Last week our Competition Regulator issued its final determination granting authorisation to a Code for Professional Conduct & Grievance Intervention Guidelines, which I was asked to design.

I’m especially pleased because the Code & Intervention Guidelines adopt a “Kindness by Design” approach that encourages professional conduct rather than an approach that merely detects and punishes professional breaches.  Looking forward to writing further about this…

Attended a Resolution Institute webinar on reflective practice & debriefing conducted by Mieke Brandon. Interesting discussion on how contemporary mediation might have shifted its focus from “doing” to “being”.

I’ll now follow up Lang, M. (2019) Guide to Reflective Practice in Conflict Resolution to investigate the discipline of reflective practice and how it might be applied to dispute resolution and professional conduct grievance work that I’m doing.

Still resolute

Businessman & Newspaper

 

 

Post-Law Day #6: Capability, Community & Emergence

…where community ended, law began.

At the end of my first post-law work week, my reading has brought me to Jerold S.  Auerbach’s 1983 summation of John Humphrey Noyes’ understanding of the difference in values and methods that marks a progression from Community to Law.*

To me, the Noyes progression seems a bit dark – i.e. one moves towards Law as Community breaks apart.

So, I’m wondering if it also works the other way – whether the recovery of Community requires, in some measure, a retreat from Law. And if so, what skill set is indicated for the encouragement and emergence of a professional community.

That’s something for me to think about because this weekend I’m needing to write my own post-law capability statement and design the governance & procedures framework for a professional conduct support programme.

Work didn’t end when I transitioned to post-law; it just brought fresh challenges!

  • Auerbach J. S. (1983) Justice Without Law? Oxford University Press, New York, p.53.

Staying Resolute

Businessman & Newspaper

 

Post-Law Day #4: Learning Resources

My post-law transition seems to be evolving into something that is more about leading discovery and encouraging learning than about giving advice.

Spent yesterday usefully working on the commercial collective bargaining project. Really enjoyed being able to present WorkAccord’s discovery level webinar on the ACCC’s proposed class exemption for CollectiveBargaining and what it might mean for the recruitment & staffing industry in Australia. Don’t worry if you missed it! Tickets for the recorded presentation will remain on sale to 31 July 2019.

Today I’ll be working on more learning resources. I’m aiming to cover labour hire licensing applications and whistleblowing changes.

I’d love to hear about your preferred learning engagement formats: Webinar? Workshop? YouTube? Video Meeting? Old-School Lecture? Something else? Nothing…?

Actually, no… Nothing would be a problem!

Staying Resolute

Businessman & Newspaper

 

 

Day #2 Post-Law Transition Focus: Collective Bargaining & Conflict Resolution

This morning, I’ll be putting the finishing touches to WorkAccord’s submission in response to the ACCC’s request for feedback on its proposed Class Exemption for Collective Bargaining. Submissions are due by 3 July 2019.

Staffing agencies would do well to have a close look at what the ACCC is proposing. I’m not sure that the $10 million turnover definition of”small business” works for high turn-over, low margin businesses that have significant labour and regulatory costs. There’s a risk of being caught out as the “weak link” in triangular and tiered arrangements – as the target of bargaining groups, but with no protection when dealing with host clients. That’s something I’m hoping to address.

Looking forward to a great webinar with Nina Harding and Peter Adler, put on by Resolution Institute at midday today. The topic:

Working with organisations, building alignments and making plans: A model for mediators to decode, strategise, develop plans and resolve conflict in organisations.

Then, this afternoon – back to collective bargaining, as I prepare my materials for WorkAccord’s webinar tomorrow (July 3) at 11.00am: Commercial Collective Bargaining: Opportunities & Threats.

 

Staying resolute

Businessman & Newspaper

Post Law Day #1

Day #1 of my transition from life as a legal practitioner. So far not vastly different. Two things are a bit different though:

  • Building a new reading list – focusing on informal justice (Jerold Auerbach, 1981), value network analysis (Verna Allee, 2008), conscious contracting (Linda Alvarez, 2013 ),  nonviolent communication (Marshall Rosenberg, 2015),  structured negotiation (Lainey Feingold, 2016), and plenty more in the J. Kim Wright global integrative law movement (J Kim Wright, Lawyers as Changemakers, 2016).
  • Writing a submission to the ACCC on collective bargaining for small business and independent contractors under the Competition & Consumer Act.

Those two items are related, by the way. Spending time to discover precisely how!

Businessman & Newspaper

Gigging with Andy: It goes like this…

Day #1 Sunday, April 7 2019 (evening)

I’ve signed up as a seller on Fiverr and set up my profile.

Here’s my A$7.38 pitch:

I will write two slogans or taglines for you.

Actually, it gets better. For a little bit more, I’ll include short jingles in standard midi file format to go with them…

And for a little bit more, I’ll write three of them…

And for a bit more again, I’ll write five. You don’t want to be spoiled for choice.

Bet you didn’t know I could do that!

Now I’ve just got to get it all set up on the platform … and have an up-close look at the terms of services and IP provisions to get a handle on copyright protection. Maybe there’s money to be made in the licensing.

I’m on my way!

Andy

Gigging with Andy …Starting at A$7.38

Day 1 Sunday, April 7 2019 (morning)

I’ve decided to undergo a Gig Economy Immersion.

Great! So now what do I do?

The ad says “Starting at 7.38”.

What? Is that the time? It’s past that already.

No. It’s the price of your first gig!

Better do some research!

Done that. Don’t want to kill the enthusiasm with over-analysis. So, I’ve checked that Mercury is not retrograde and that the Moon is not VoC.  Should be OK then.

I’ve also read an online review of the three top gigging platforms and decided to try two of them – for legitimate purposes of scientific comparison of course.

Fiverr and Upwork are getting a tryout – because I’m intrigued by all the sellers on Fiver offering legal documents starting at A$7.38 and I’m tempted by Upwork’s promise of greater rewards.

Just on the point of pricing, my head is hurting as I think about stepping away from 30 years of hourly billing for legal advice, charged in 6-minute units.

But here’s the thing…for my Gig Economy Immersion, I’m not going to be selling legal advice.

What am I going to sell? (Note my optimism, I actually think I am going to get to sell something and maybe get paid for it too!)

I’ve asked my sons, but so far the only responses I’ve got are:

“?” (Son X).

“Can you proofread my essay?” (Son Y).

[laughs] (Son Z).

Colleen is smiling (benignly I think).

So I need to think about what I’m going (to offer) to sell. I’m determined to come up with a product idea this evening.

A name for the journal

Oh! And I’ve thought of a name for my journal: “Gigging with Andy“.

Who’s Andy? It’s me. I’m sort of undercover.

That’s it for now.

Stay tuned!

Andy