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Balancing a Career in Law, Leadership, and Coaching With Sabrina Shaheen Cronin

Balancing a Career in Law, Leadership, and Coaching With Sabrina Shaheen Cronin

June 14, 2023   |   Written by Gladiator Law Marketing
Sabrina Shaheen CroninSabrina Shaheen Cronin is the Founder and Managing Partner of The Cronin Law Firm PLLC, which offers law services for cases involving family, divorce, custody, and criminal defense. Sabrina is a nationally recognized motivational speaker, strategist coach, writer, mentor, and television personality. She has developed her own curriculum and hosts weekly workshops providing parents with resources to cope with co-parenting dilemmas. Sabrina received her JD and MBA from the University of Detroit Mercy and is licensed to practice law in Michigan, New York, and Illinois.
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Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • Sabrina Shaheen Cronin shares what Cronin Law Firm specializes in
  • Sabrina’s experience as a musician and her transition to law
  • The early days of Sabrina’s legal career
  • Why did Sabrina decide to start Cronin Law Firm?
  • How Sabrina’s role as a business coach, writer, and mentor aids in serving her clients
  • What is Sabrina most proud of?

In this episode…

Building a renowned law firm, coaching individuals, and leading business strategies simultaneously can be intimidating. But for Sabrina Shaheen Cronin, it’s all in a day’s work. Leveraging her extensive education and her commitment to helping others, Sabrina has created space in the legal industry to impact lives beyond the courtroom. Sabrina combined her business and law degrees to establish Cronin Law Firm, transforming it into a successful practice. Recognizing she could lend her expertise outside the firm, she ventured into life and business coaching to help clients address issues that often serve as roadblocks in their personal and professional life. In this episode of 15 Minutes, host Chad Franzen welcomes Sabrina Shaheen Cronin, Founder and Managing Partner at Cronin Law Firm, to discuss her law, business, and coaching career. Sabrina shares the initial struggles of starting her practice and how she managed to intertwine her legal work with personal development and coaching.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Sponsor for this episode…

This episode is brought to you by Gladiator Law Marketing, where we deliver tailor-made services to help you accomplish your objectives and maximize your growth potential. To have a successful marketing campaign and make sure you’re getting the best ROI, your firm needs to have a better website and better content. At Gladiator Law Marketing, we use artificial intelligence, machine learning, and decades of experience to outperform the competition. To learn more, go to gladiatorlawmarketing.com or schedule a free marketing consultation. You can also send an email to adam@gladiatorlawmarketing.com.

Episode Transcript

Intro  0:01   You’re listening to 15 Minutes, where we feature community leaders sharing what the rest of us should know but likely don’t. Chad Franzen  0:13   Hi, Chad Franzen here one of the hosts of share your voice where we talk with top notch law firms and lawyers about what it takes to grow a successful law practice. This episode is brought to you by Gladiator Law Marketing, delivering tailor made services to help you accomplish your objectives and maximize your growth potential to have a successful marketing campaign and make sure you’re getting the best ROI. Your firm needs to have a better website and better content. Gladiator Law Marketing uses artificial intelligence, machine learning and decades of experience to outperform the competition. To learn more, go to gladiatorlawmarketing.com where you can schedule a free marketing consultation. Sabrina Shaheen Cronin is a true role model for today’s single working parents. She began her career as a musician and soon afterward, she began her rise as a successful attorney. Sabrina is now a nationally recognized motivational and public speaker, life and business strategist, coach, writer, mentor, successful businesswoman, top lawyer, visionary and television personality. She is known as the shared parenting expert for her workshops, helping families cope with co parenting dilemmas in today’s challenging environment. Hey, Sabrina, thanks so much for joining me today. How are you? Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  1:21   Hey, Chad, I’m great. You made me sound so good. Chad Franzen  1:24   Hey, it’s great to have you here. Hey. So since this is mainly, we’ll get into everything. But since this is, you know, mainly a law focused show. Tell me about the Cronin Law Firm and what you guys specialize in. Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  1:37   So I started the Cronin Law Firm with no big plans to have a law firm, but I started it 11 years ago, just me. And when I say I had no big plans, it was really no intention of mine to have a large firm. Or to grow a firm, it was just really myself and my desire to help people. And because I attracted a lot of clients, and those clients needed servicing. And I worked really, really hard my first couple of years, I needed more help. And then that’s how it really grew organically. And I’m proud of that fact. And so we help clients of all types. We help businesses, we help individual clients, we help juvenile offenders, we help moms, dads, CEOs, we do a lot of different types of law, from litigation, to family, divorce, custody, as well as criminal defense in business. Chad Franzen  2:33   I mentioned in your intro that you started out as a musician, and then began your rise as an attorney. Tell me about your experience as a musician, first of all, and then kind of how that transition into law went for you. Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  2:44   So I went to school for music, and I was always a music that I was always in performing. I was a singer, a dancer, actress, and I pursued that in college. And I worked in New York, for some summers and a short stint in Manhattan for a little bit. And I saw how poorly treated many talent and crew, quite frankly, were. And in in seeing that, and I was a little shy at the time, and I didn’t really have the confidence to do what you really needed to do to kind of make it and to really grind. Through that industry. I really found that my passion was for being a voice for my friends and my colleagues in that industry. And I decided to go to law school. And I also received a business degree as well a master’s in business. And I really wanted to help people to get the best out of whether it was a contract or their their gig or whatever it was be the voice for those people. And in doing so I really started empowering myself. And that’s really how my legal career took off. I was always doing music, even as a as a trial attorney, and then assistant prosecuting attorney. And now as an owner of a law firm, I still pursue music I still, you know, as an independent artist and proud of some of the accomplishments I made there. But I also love still working in the entertainment industry as well. Chad Franzen  4:20   Does training as a musician and becoming more skilled as a musician have any similarities to business school and law school? Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  4:30   It’s just the grit. It’s the tenacity. It’s the perseverance. It’s the you know, stick to itiveness it’s, it’s all of those things, and the passion for it. Because when you’re passionate about doing something, you know, the old adage, it doesn’t really seem like work. You know, it seems less like work when you’re passionate, and especially in the arts and people pursuing it. You have to love the journey. You can’t just want to do it because you want to be a star someday. Those are the wrong reasons. So like law school and business school, getting to that end result is tedious is hard is you know, a lot of late nights. So you really have to stay focused as to your why. Because you love it. Because you want to help people and do it for the right reasons. Chad Franzen  5:20   What were the early days of your legal career like? Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  5:22   A lot different, working really long hours proving myself to the bosses proving myself to the, you know, the senior, no owners of the firm the partners, it was, it was not as rewarding, I would say, because I didn’t have that client interaction. It wasn’t that one on one, it was more interacting with your bosses to get them to look good. And then as the career unfolded, and I was helping to attract more clients, and I was having more of a one on one direct relationship with those clients, then you start to feel like you’re really making an impact in their lives. And that’s really what helped me to find it more rewarding. Chad Franzen  6:12   So you started the Cronin Law Firm, how did that kind of materialize? Or when did you decide like, okay, now’s my time. Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  6:20   So I was an assistant prosecuting attorney. Midpoint in my career, most people start with the prosecutor’s office out of law school, but I did it after working over a decade in civil litigation and civil practice. And then I really wanted to become more well rounded. And I always loved trial work. I was always, you know, good. It’s like performing, you know, you have to performing to a jury, you have to kind of stand up in front of people and state your case and plead your argument. And it’s like acting and, and so it was a natural transition for me to go into the prosecutor’s office where I honed my skills in criminal law. And I decided, after three or four years doing that, I really wanted to focus on my music, I really missed it. I was at that point in my life where I was just I thought, you know, if I don’t do it now, I’ll never do it. And, and so I was really performing a lot. And I was getting some singles out there. And I had, you know, quite quite a modicum of success for an independent artist. And that was back in a wait. And I just wanted to kind of take a step back from the law, I was still practicing law. I left the prosecutor’s office with honors and you know, I was I was activated and all of that, but I just really needed that time for myself. I was a little burned out. But I really wanted to focus on my music. And then after doing that, I started having children and I was doing teaching and singing a lot more and recording. And then once my children were getting a little older, I didn’t want to be gone as much gigging every night. And so that’s when it really when my law practice, started naturally, becoming busier and busier. And then I decided, Hey, I can’t keep meeting people in Starbucks any longer. I might as well open up some space to hang a shingle. And so I had some friends who were subleasing out of their office space. And I just rented a tiny little office. And then over time, I had to rent more and more and more space as a sublease. And then after a few years, I opened up my own office and built out space for my law firm. Chad Franzen  8:39   What is more nerve wracking? Maybe neither one is nerve racking for you now, but maybe when you were younger, what was more nerve wracking performing as a musician in front of a crowd of people or performing as an attorney against another attorney who may be more seasoned than you and in front of a judge? Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  8:57   I would say, Chad, because of my background in the arts, I have always over prepared because you can never be too prepared, especially when going against a seasoned attorney. And usually seasoned attorneys not often not always, I should say, usually attorneys that have a little more, you know, competence and experience, don’t prepare as much because they rest on their confidence because they’ve done it a million times. But when you’re a younger attorney, you need to realize that you’re gonna get thrown some things that you’re not going to be able to handle. You have to learn how to think quickly on your feet. And the best way to do that though, is being over prepared. Know the law, know your case inside and out better than anyone else, and let them underestimate you. Because every single time I’ve been underestimated, I’ve always defeated the opponent. And you know, that sort of a little. I don’t know a little trick I would say, but it’s not really a trick. It’s all fair game. But I to answer that question Chad, for me, I get more nervous when I am performing in front of one or two than a huge audience of 1000s. And likewise, I am more nervous in front of a jury than I am, say a motion hearing or an evidentiary hearing in front of the judge. Chad Franzen  10:21   What are you? Why are you more nervous in front of one or two than a crowd of thousands? That’s interesting. Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  10:27   Because it’s more intimate, because they know you that much more closely. And you’re revealing a part of yourself to one or two people, as opposed to when you’re on stage, you have a little bit of that buffer, you can’t see their faces the lights on, you know, the lights prevent you from seeing the audience. And there’s just a little bit more distance. And so when you’re performing the one or two, that intimacy is really real. So it’s you and them. And that’s it. Chad Franzen  11:00   When you first started your own practice, was there maybe something that stood out to you that you realized you didn’t know? Or or, you know, like, you had you had a master’s in business and in a law degree, so you probably were well versed in business, too. Was there anything that you kind of didn’t know that you didn’t know at the time? Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  11:17   When I started my law practice, yeah, or even my firm? Chad Franzen  11:21   Yeah, your own law firm? Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  11:22   Oh, Chad, everything, I’ve made a gazillion mistakes. I mean, and that’s the thing, you, you can’t be afraid to take action. And you can’t wait until you know something perfectly. This is the sort of the opposite of preparing for trial, you just have to kind of jump in because no one taught me how to have a business. I was not given any seed money. I was not given any files. I was not I didn’t leave. Like many attorneys, as you know, they, you know, leave a group of them from a larger firm, they take clients with them or files with them, they start their own firm. And, you know, I’ve had people do that from me, some of my attorneys that I’ve trained, have left, after I worked my ass off getting all these clients and the files because I’m really the only Rainmaker which makes it very difficult. But, you know, there comes a point when you just have to let caution to the wind and trust your gut, trust your instincts. And what I’ve learned, I think more than anything is to do that, is you have to learn the difference between your intuition and instinct versus emotion. And when you learn that distinction, and when you act on intuition and instinct, versus emotion, that you know, you’re moving in the right direction. Chad Franzen  12:40   That’s, that’s good advice. So that leads me to my next question about some of the other things you do as a public speaker life and business strategist, coach, writer and mentor. Can you tell me about whatever whatever comes to your mind when you when you’re asked about those things? Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  12:57   Yeah, it was born out of a need that I saw in my clients for a deeper help a deeper understanding of their own issues getting in their way illegally. And many times, I don’t care if I’m dealing with a top level CEO, who has issues at work or issues at home, or a younger person who’s having some issues with with the law, everybody who has any kind of adversity in their life. And this is the same as any kind of leader of any organization, whenever there is any kind of Crossroads issues, adversity. It’s always that person. It’s the leader, it’s the it’s that person getting in their own way. And you know, I always say, and I’ll say this wholeheartedly, I was the reason why my business, you know, has gone through some changes or wasn’t always the best it could be. If a leader doesn’t look at him or herself to say, look, I’m the chokehold here, I’m the one that is, you know, causing these delays, for whatever reason. And if they don’t take responsibility for accountability, then your your organization will never grow. And it will never grow to the extent that you want it too many times people can’t get out of their own way to better themselves, better their life, help their legal issue. So when I saw the need for people to to really take a hard look at themselves, that’s when I wanted to take the time, to help them with their lives, so that their life is better, not just during their legal case, which is very finite, but throughout their entire life for the rest of their life. And that’s a passion of mine, and I think I am doing it for others because I did it for myself, because I know that you know I had to take accountability and responsibility for a lot of the things in my life and until I was able to do that the same patterns would arise whether it’s in your personal life or professional life and In order to stop that cycle, you really need that strong look within, and the motivation to move beyond your limitations. Chad Franzen  15:11   Yeah, that’s kind of a hard thing for that’s kind of a hard thing I’m guessing a to do and then be to even realize that you need to do, what is it? Can you share? What led that? What led you to that standpoint? Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  15:24   Personally, yeah. Because I kept finding myself in similar situations, whether it was mistreatment by others, whether it was employees leaving, whether it was you know, all of it, you know, what am I doing, that makes other people treat me this way. And so when you take a look at yourself, you’re like, Hey, I got to stop this. Right. And, and so, you know, in fact, my very first big event, a big motivational event was with Tony Robbins. And it was, it was a great event, and he kind of opened my eyes to all this, you know, the leaders are the chokehold of their own company, if you’re not performing to the level you want to be, or your company isn’t? Well, then look at yourself, you know, it’s not, yeah, sure. Maybe it’s those underneath you, but you were the one that put him there. I’m the one that hired all my people. So what is it, you have to look at yourself, your personality, you know, and Joe Dispenza has a book, you know, breaking the habit of being yourself, I don’t, I don’t know if any of your listeners are into all that stuff. But But I highly encourage, you know, every listener here to really take a look within stop looking at yourself as a victim. Sure, some of the things that happened to you aren’t your fault. But at that point, then you take a look at it and say, Okay, how can I change it, so it doesn’t happen again, when I saw clients, especially in very, very toxic, highly abusive marriages want to get out of those marriages, when I would help these people out of those marriages, only to find them only to see that down the road, they’re caught up in another cycle, you know, it’s like, okay, well, there’s something needs to change here. And so the only thing that can change is themselves. Chad Franzen  17:13   What are you, from your journey, is there is there something you’re most proud of, or a moment that you look back on that you’re particularly proud of? Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  17:22   I think how far I’ve come, I think that, you know, instead of looking outside yourself, for the, you know, the answer someone to save you, or, you know, or whatnot, I’m proud that I was able to do it for myself. And I don’t necessarily want to say by myself, because I’ve had certainly I’ve had a number of people, mentors, coaches, dear friends, family members who have really helped, but you’re still doing it for yourself, by yourself. Because at the end of the day, ultimately, you are the only one that can make that change. And you have to do it for you. You can’t do it for someone else. But when you have the motivation within, like, for me, it’s my children, you know, I’m making our choices. And, and I don’t want to really say sacrifices, it’s really just life, goals and dreams, but I’m doing a lot of things. Because I look in their eyes, and I say, hey, if I, you know, I need to do better, I need to do right for them. And if you can have that, why. And for me, too, it’s not just my kids, it’s really making an impact in people’s lives. And if I can better just one person’s life, and I know I’ve helped them, then that’s, that’s enough for me to keep going. Because I mean, we all know, the legal profession is not easy. You know, we have judges to deal with, we have opposing counsel, we have clients, employees, you know, there’s a lot thrown at us. Sometimes the law is not on our side, there’s always tort reform, there’s always lots of issues that we have to deal with. And then we have, you know, people wanting to file grievances. And this because they don’t want to pay their bill. I mean, we’re faced with a lot of things coming at us all the time. And so, in navigating these waters, we always have to show up, always show up. But then give yourself grace to, you know, you’re going to make a mistake from time to time and not everything is going to be rosy and not everything’s going to be good and but you have to have the belief within yourself that you can handle it no matter what. Once you’re there, you make the decision and you move on. And and that’s another thing, Chad is learning how to make fast decisions and just go with it. You know, for me, sometimes I take time to really think through things. But then once I’ve made a decision, I do it and then you know, it’s and that’s it and let the chips fall where they may because you can always pick up and move on from there. Chad Franzen  19:51   Yeah, that’s that sounds good. Thanks so much for that. Hey, I have one more question for you. But first, just tell me how people can find out more about Cronin Law Firm and everything else you have going on. Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  20:02   Thank you so much Chad. Anyone can find me on all social media platforms croninlawfirm.com, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, I also have a personal brand, my website, sabrinashaheen.com, where you can find me and I can help coach in non legal ways. And also legal I have a I have a niche job where I can help people through the legal process, I can also help, you know, proactively prevent things from happening. And I can also help empower my clients at the same time. They’re going through legal crises, and I do a lot of crisis management all over the country, so they can find me really, anywhere. Chad Franzen  20:43   Okay, sounds good. Hey, last question for you, you mentioned that you had, you know, you’ve you’ve had some mentors and some friends and family that you’ve counted on? Who are who is a mentor for you? And what is the best advice you remember receiving from that person? Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  21:00   Well, Chad, I can’t really just give one name because I’ve had so many. And I don’t want to give anyone our slide anyone. But honestly, people in general, I think, I think I find blessings in a lot of things. It could be someone I encounter on a boss who’s given me a good, you know, good advice that day, it can be a co worker, or it can be a friend of mine, or a brother, or, you know, my late father or my mother. So it’s hard for me to just wrap it up in one thing, but I think my takeaway, and what I want to leave your listeners with today is just get clear on what you want in life, that that clarity, that vision is so important, and really move toward it. And don’t tell yourself, you cannot do something that you really want because your brain believes everything you tell it. And the subconscious mind is very powerful. So always be kindly to yourself, and know with 100% certainty that you can get it and achieve whatever you want. Okay, that’s my takeaway. Yeah. Chad Franzen  22:17   Great. Thank you so much. Hey, Sabrina, it’s been great talking to you today. Thanks so much for your time and your story and all your insights. Really appreciate it. Sabrina Shaheen Cronin  22:24   Thanks so much, everybody. Outro  22:28   Thanks for listening to 15 Minutes, be sure to subscribe and we’ll see you next time.

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