We are delighted to celebrate World Mental Health Day today with all our lawyers in various jurisdictions such as England, Ireland, Germany, France, Spain, Poland and South Africa. We know that everyone in our team is benefiting from the Aria Grace Law ethical business model and that this is positively contributing to making them feel valued, great about their work and most importantly, happy.
Over the last few years, there has been a growing trend in many law firms offering meditation and yoga classes during the working day whilst equally mandating that their lawyers bill a certain amount of excessive hours per year in order to maintain their role or progress further with their career. This mixed message does not help lawyers and only shows a law firm, at first glance, to appear to care about mental health but in reality, not actually giving lawyers the time to do activities which help them to be mindful and feel happy. This growing trend also applies to certain law firms choosing to sponsor and support mental health charities yet ironically requiring their lawyers to achieve billing targets that are detrimental to their health and wellbeing.
After gaining over 20 years’ legal experience, including at a major international law firm, Lindsay Healy founded Aria Grace Law and today he shares his view on mental health in the legal profession with you:
"I think the biggest problem with mental health in law derives from billable hours culture. There is an enormous stress on lawyers in many traditional firms to bill their 1700+ hours a year on top of the other things firms expect of them. Out of this, these lawyers will be paid approximately a third of the fees that they charge. The remaining two-thirds goes to pay for the expensive infrastructure of the firms and the 'Porsches and Divorces' of the executive management. I remember about 20 years ago a very very senior lawyer described private practice as 'a mugs game'. Why? Because the biggest 'trick' of the traditional law firm model is to persuade the people doing the work that they should work more hours in order for them to be successful, whereas the reality is they are simply used to feed the people (mostly middle aged white males) at the top. It is only when they step back from this world that they see that they are in a Ponzi scheme, where their value and mental health are at the bottom of the pyramid. That is why firms like Aria Grace Law, where lawyers get paid 90% of their clients’ billing and an equal share of profit, will be the model of the future because it pays the people who create the value and not the executive or shareholders, and provides a structure to enable lawyers decide how much to work in order to give them their work life balance. This model creates a 'working to live' not 'living to work' culture and a safe haven for mental health”.
If you're a lawyer interested in joining a truly ethical business model, please contact Lindsay Healy on firstname.lastname@example.org. If you want to find out how to create an ethical business model in your industry and thereby positively contribute to the happiness and wellbeing of professionals in your sector, please contact us on email@example.com. Let's make real change happen together by driving #EthicalWorld values for the benefit of all and our future generations.