Conscious Contracts® Clinics Seek Pro Bono Clients!
The Conscious Contracts® model is a process for creating sustainable, values-based agreements that provide a framework for discovering alignment, facilitating communication, and resolving disagreements. The model is relatively new but is in use around the world including in the USA, the UK, Brazil, Spain, the Netherlands, France, India, South Africa, Australia, and more.
For our training courses, we seek groups of 2 or more trying to come to agreement together. Conscious businesses and social entrepreneurs are especially encouraged to apply. Businesses shifting to employee ownership or coops will also find the process valuable. We’ve used Conscious Contracts® between business partners, co-founders, companies and vendors, landlords and tenants, publishers and authors, employee-employer, or for premarital or parenting agreements.
What the Pro Bono Experience is Like:
Clients will go through the process of discovering alignment and creating a foundation for their relationship. For example: Why did you choose this project? What is important to you? What does the other person bring? Sometimes we are sure that we are both doing a project for the same reason, only to discover you have completely different ideas. In the process, you’ll gain clarity and learn a lot about yourself and the other people in your project. Then, we will work with you to co-create a structure for handling change and any conflicts which arise. You’ll co-design your own structure, based on your working culture and values. We help you engage in the conversations, ask questions, and sometimes give you homework to facilitate reflection.
At the end, you will have a plain language written agreement that strengthens your relationship, clarifies expectations, and increases your ability to reach your goals while navigating through change. It is actually a fun and inspiring process.
Clients who discover there is not sufficient alignment to form an agreement are usually thankful to the process for illuminating the different goals/visions/values before they committed to a contract.
Whether or not you end up making an agreement, the Conscious Contracts® process can help you reduce the risk of costly conflicts, break-ups, and unmet goals that often emerge and get caught up within the traditional legal system.
To apply to be a client, please fill out this Client Application Form
Over the course of a year, we have several opportunities for pro bono clients. Our Conscious Contracts® certification program often needs clients. We also teach the model in law school.
Law School Negotiations Clinics: Our law school negotiations clinic is a space where law students are introduced to the Conscious Contracts® process and gain real-life experience by working directly with clients. If you apply and are selected as a clinic client you will:
- Receive pro-bono (free) services;
- Get to experience the Conscious Contracts® process;
- Contribute to the development of the next generation of future lawyers.
As a clinic client, you commit to spending about 4-6 full weeks on this project. For clients to move through the process or get the depth of negotiation that leads to transformation and alignment, you will need to commit to a minimum of 2-3 hours of meeting time each week. We want to ensure that clients and our students are able to experience and gain value from this process and your commitment to dedicate the time for meetings contributes greatly to this.
The students are supervised by experienced lawyers, but the students in this course are in the role of consultants, not attorneys. If you have an attorney within your organization already, you are welcome and encouraged to have them participate in this process. Having an attorney is not required to participate in this clinic.
We’ve had several clients bring their attorneys as part of their group and it’s helped create meaningful alignment in their organizations. If you do not already have an attorney we will try to refer you to an attorney licensed in your locality or recommend you hire an attorney after the process to finalize an agreement if legal counsel is needed.
FALL 2021: We have up to 5 pro bono seats available this fall. This clinic runs from the middle of August through the end of November, but clients will only participate from October through November. If you apply for this opportunity, you and the other person (or your group) will need to be available for meetings from about October 5th through November 23rd, 2021. The amount of time spent reflecting and reviewing outside of meetings varies, some clients spend 2 hours a week some spend 5-7 additional hours. It is up to you how much you want to put in, for how much you get out of this project. The investment of time supports the building of a strong foundation that will serve you in your future relationship.
We will be working closely with the law students and ask for your patience in being practice clients. You can always reach out to one of the professors with concerns or suggestions.
Previous clients have found the process deeply meaningful, supportive, and transformative.
From a previous Conscious Contracts® client:
I found participating in the Conscious Contracts® process as a client to be an incredibly rewarding experience. I think there are many people like me, who want to collaborate with friends, and also want to have clearly-articulated agreements and boundaries — without any of the typical adversarial BS and legalese that usually comes with starting something together. Through the 6-week process my partner and I learned about ourselves and each other and experienced a journey that helped us articulate what we want to co-create, how we want to make decisions and address challenges, and how we can do that in ways that are healthy for both of us, for our relationship, and for our project. We benefited from the combined wisdom of 13 caring, resourceful, generous attorneys and a facilitator whose wisdom, kindness, and depth of experience beyond what I imagined would be accessible in the world of law. Overall, this course represented a paradigm shift away from control, dominance, and fear into a world of gentleness, clarity, and wise preparedness. Along the way I learned about many valuable new resources and modalities through the combined life-experience of the cohort, and now have connections with brilliant and well-resourced lawyers. I’d feel absolutely confident reaching out to help ensure a new undertaking starts off on the right footing.
Participation was a significant commitment of about 5-7 hours per week (more than I expected going in!), but it was easy to justify because of all the value that came out of the meetings, readings, and conversations. Without a program like this I believe it would have taken us much longer to come to some basic agreements; I believe those agreements would have likely been incomplete; and I believe the process of coming to them would have created more friction and unsettlement. Instead we have come out of this process feeling close to one another and liberated to work on our project.