Nevada lawyer and GCLC member Glenn Meier is devoted to helping his clients design, build, maintain, and restore their important business relationships through their “conscious contracts.” He coaches others to deliver relationships that are not only legally sound, but also based on shared values with tools already built in that are intended to resolve disruptions in those relationships both creatively and productively.
Meier explained his approach to all attending the Global Collaborative Law Council’s Annual Conference in Las Vegas this year. He began by reminding us that our (and our clients’) business relationships are some of the most important assets of any business. Whether it’s the relationships between employees within a business or the company’s relationships with its employees, customers, vendors, and others, success relies on sustainable, mutually beneficial relationships between the company and those with whom its representatives interact.
As with any relationship though, all businesses are subject to disagreements and disruptions that can damage those vital relationships. A businessperson can aid his clients, employees, and vendors in keeping those relationships healthy and functioning well by drafting and negotiating “conscious contracts” that will help the businessperson bring consistent value to his community of commercial contacts.
The legal world interacts with commercial relationships through contracts. Those who enter into a business contract seek safety and clarity. Meier stresses the importance of installing tools when the relationship is still healthy to address how you will react when the inevitable conflicts later arise. (After all, it is far more difficult to build those tools when in the midst of conflict than it is when everything is proceeding smoothly.)
Conscious contracts are all about giving clients the tools they can use to build strong relationships based on a shared vision, mission, and values. By focusing on these issues at the commencement of a contractual relationship, the conscious contract gives the parties a framework to successfully manage the bumps in the road that will inevitably arise later. Today’s business owners are becoming more and more aware of the place their business occupies in a larger system, so they understand the importance of having strong, mutually beneficial relationships with all of their stakeholders.
And these savvy business owners need lawyers who will collaborate with them on developing that vital commercial network.
Meier strives to create a world in which people work together powerfully and purposefully to generate their positive impacts. The legal system in this world transcends a system that merely compels us to adhere to minimum standards of behavior; it presents people with tools and safe environments to build stronger relationships; to heal damaged ones; and, when necessary, to peacefully end those beyond repair. Meier’s mission is to help his clients harness the incredible power of their businesses to positively impact the lives of everyone touched by their business by blending the left-brain world of legal analysis with the right-brain world of emotional intelligence and a deep understanding of human interaction.
When training clients about their conscious contracts, Meier promotes the following values. The most profound exercise of freedom is choosing to act in service of others. Life is a team sport; we are at our best when we work together for mutual benefit. Just because something is feasible and legal doesn’t make it the right thing to do. Change is mandatory; improvement is optional and only comes through pursuit of lifelong learning and growth. All other things being equal choose the option that is the most fun for everyone.
By focusing on entering into “conscious contracts,” business owners today can optimize their operations, manage risk, and achieve long-term business success. Glenn sensitized everyone in attendance at this year’s annual GCLC meeting to the value inherent in offering our clients such contracts for all of their future commercial relationships and endeavors.
What happened in Vegas won’t stay in Vegas, not for me! This was the third of my three most inspiring takeaways from the GCLC annual meeting this year. I’m looking forward to next year’s conference. Please plan to join me there for more motivating workshops and trainings!
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