A recent study conducted by Gallup concluded that strong social connections within the workplace encourage staff to be more engaged and deliver higher quality work. Many firms have had success focusing on these connections through internal activities, but a variety of popular platforms have been developed which promise to help forge connections and facilitate candid discussions.
One new career app, Fishbowl, is a social network that connects professionals within the same industry or company, enabling them to have candid and relevant conversations about workplace topics. It’s become increasingly popular among professional services, and law firms in particular. What can this tool do for your firm?
1. Help professionals to collaborate
Have a question that you need some advice on? Fishbowl is the perfect method for gaining insight from other like-minded professionals. One of the main goals of Fishbowl is to help companies cooperate, and lawyers have found that they can reach out on this channel to talk about cases, firm issues, laws and policies, or industry ideas in general. Fishbowl’s internal statistics share that at least 50% of users are at a senior level in their career trajectory, which means you can quickly share ideas with seasoned and knowledgeable people in your firm. You can also work online with staff from other firms, which means there’s a resource at your fingertips that you might not otherwise have access to. Faster than sending an email and awaiting a response, sending a quick message on Fishbowl will likely garner answers that can help lawyers work more effectively.
2. Gain support from colleagues who understand you
Because of Fishbowl’s option to remain private, professionals are more likely to have honest and up-front conversations. Topics discussed might range from billable hour expectations to salary and bonus information. When we explored the app, we saw questions on meeting etiquette and more sensitive matters like handling an underperforming partner at the firm. Users can expect advice that’s actually helpful, since it’s from real people who have backgrounds and careers that are similar to yours. You can also use your name and connect to your LinkedIn profile, if you don’t plan to discuss anything private or sensitive. Either way, you can take part in honest conversations and receive candid feedback.
3. Ask questions and get answers
Feedback shared by users on the Fishbowl website stated that “it’s a great way to ask the questions that no one seems to have the answers to”. In an industry where minutes matter, it’s a substantial advantage to be able to reach out when you think of a question and get an answer instantly. Using a collaborative tool like Fishbowl, you’ll have the professional expertise of your firm and your network at your fingertips. It’s also a great way for more junior attorneys to request information without feeling vulnerable, since they can remain anonymous if they choose.
When used effectively, Fishbowl can improve the way that law firms communicate. Firms can experience multi-faceted benefits implementing the system and encouraging firm-wide usage.
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