Louisa Phillips
Louisa Phillips
Director

Articles From the Team

How to combat the working blues

The current challenges...

To say 2020 was a roller coaster is an understatement. The world was thrown into change overnight.

Whilst work for some of us has continued to be busy, others have been subject to furlough or a significant reduction in work, and for all of us it's meant staring at the same four walls, day in day out.

I’ve spoken to so many lawyers who have battled with completions at home, virtual trials, and even starting new roles without meeting their new colleagues.  Some have experienced an upturn in work and worked relentlessly through lockdown, whilst at the same time caring for children or vulnerable relatives in their bubble – constantly juggling responsibilities.  Others have had an unusual lack over work or furlough period, which has also had an impact on well-being and mental health. 

While some individuals thrive off pressure, others end up feeling swamped and simply need a steady flow of work to keep them happy.  For others it may not be the flow of work, but perhaps simply being in the same environment day after day that is making you lose confidence, or assess your happiness in your role. 

No one story is the same, but we all share the same challenges of being at home, lost in the monotony of it all... It can make it very easy to forget why you enjoy your job.  A lot of the fun things at the moment have to an extent been taken away – meeting colleagues, sharing an experience with clients or your team, but rather than dwell on what was, maybe it’s time to adapt. 

We now face ourselves in a unique position and we will need to be more self-aware and embrace our new normal.

So what can we do to boost morale?

Perhaps it’s as simple as picking up the phone to clients to re-establish connections, to make you feel energised again.  Could you draw up a new business development strategy to speak to warm clients and approach clients who have gone cold?  Set up virtual coffees, team drinks or dare I say it, a zoom quiz?  Whatever it may be, take control and suggest ideas to your team.  We are all in this together.

Whilst many lawyers are happy to focus on fee earning and that is the key to their role and enjoyment at work, others may need more, especially during difficult times.  Perhaps there are junior solicitors, paralegals or support staff who would really appreciate your time?  Is there someone who started last year and didn't have the usual introduction to new colleagues and proximity in the office to be able to reach out for help?  Why not pick up the phone to them or arrange a virtual meet?

Granted, the end of year fatigue had kicked in for most of us by the end of 2020, but changing a few simple things now at the start of 2021 could help enormously in the first half of the New Year.

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