How Partnership — in Life and Work — Fuels Our Business

Goodman Law Group | Chicago’s COO Bonnie Goodman brings a unique set of skills and experience to her work for the firm. As a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with a part-time practice as a geriatric therapist, and an accomplished former marketing manager for a Fortune 500 company, Bonnie has a gift for perceptive listening and a heart for service that helps her understand clients’ needs and find creative ways to meet them. Bonnie is the backbone of GLG’s healthy work culture and client-service focus, and David calls her “by far the best business partner of my career.”

 Here’s Bonnie in her own words on the origin of her role in the firm and how work-life boundaries are a perennial work in progress:

 I always envisioned that David would open his own law firm one day. What I never envisioned was working with him. I could not see how joining forces to manage a business would be a healthy decision for our marriage, given each of our . . . leadership mentalities — in other words, headstrong, stubborn, and determined. However, during a vacation while David was in the planning stage for Goodman Law Group | Chicago, when I was in a relaxed state of mind and probably more open to crazy ideas, David asked me to join him in managing the business of the firm. At the time, I had a thriving geriatric therapy practice and still firmly believed that we should not work together. But I understood that it might make smart business sense, and I wanted David to work with someone he could trust. So I agreed to dedicate a few hours each week to David’s firm, while still managing my therapy practice.

After nearly two years in business, those few weekly hours have turned into nearly a full- time job. Goodman Law Group | Chicago offers me a platform to help David realize his professional goals, and, most importantly, serve our clients in a deeply committed and honest way. At Goodman Law Group | Chicago we have the autonomy to say “yes” when we think something makes good business sense, and to say “no” when we think something is not in a client’s best interest. Because we are independent and small, we can make the conscious choice to practice with the utmost integrity, and honor our clients’ corporate values in order to meet their business goals. We enjoy developing close alliances with our clients and collaborating with them as business partners, and some of those relationships have developed into close friendships because our clients know we truly care about them and their businesses.

Goodman Law Group | Chicago is also a culture where people enjoy their work and thrive in their careers. We do not fight internally about who gets credit for bringing in business. Our proficiency is not measured by the number of hours we bill. Rather, our success is determined by our clients’ success, which is often driven by their willingness to welcome GLG as a true business partner. GLG’s vision of helping our clients protect their businesses in an honest, sometimes tough and sometimes compassionate way, incentivizes the GLG team to work together toward common goals.

The beginning of our work together was a bit dicey, and David and I stumbled quite a bit. We learned to stay in our lanes and calendar meetings to discuss business-related issues. We have still not mastered boundaries and sometimes find ourselves discussing marketing ideas on Saturday nights while watching “Schitt’s Creek.” Yet starting from scratch, building something together with David, has taught me, once again, the value of “we.” We are truly partners in life and work, and I look forward with the entire GLG team to growth and continued excellence in client service in 2021.

This article originally appeared on LinkedIn on February 8, 2021