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Use learning and development to help associates develop confidence

By Sue Beavil, Senior Training & Development Manager, Mayer Brown

14 May 2013

Confidence is a central feature of any successful firm: confidence of clients in the firm's performance, confidence in its leadership and the personal confidence of its individuals. Each is inextricably linked and can be supported by learning and development (L&D), but only if we are clear about what we mean when we talk about confidence.

The starting place is usually personal confidence. I sometimes wonder whether the partners and managers who say that certain individuals lack confidence believe that those individuals do not have the skills to do their jobs to the required standard or that they are seen to be deficient in their ability to communicate effectively.

Confidence is a word which regularly features in performance review or appraisal documents. It's a little like the porridge in the fairy tale Goldilocks and the Three Bears - it will be too much confidence for some, not enough for others and just right for the rest. What do p...

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