Law People

Law People

Better Law Practice Through Better People Management

Monthly Archives: December 2006

The Daunting Task of Recruiting: Maintaining Ties with Alums, Searching Farther Afield and Assessing Young Recruits

Posted in Management, Mentoring, Professional Development, Risk Management
Between 1986 and 2005, the number of lawyers employed by the nation’s 100 largest law firms nearly tripled, from roughly 25,000 to more than 70,000, and the most recent report is that the Am Law 100 gained 4% in numbers of lawyers this past year. During this time the number of top students at top law… Continue Reading

Emotional Intelligence and Excellence in Lawyering

Posted in Assessments, Coaching, Emotional Intelligence, Management, Mentoring, Professional Development
While Emotional Intelligence has become a popular buzzword, the researchers on whose work Daniel Goleman based his bestselling Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ, only formulated an assessment to test EI in 2002. Called the MSCEIT (Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test), it is the only EI assessment based on abilities instead of self-reports, i.e., it… Continue Reading

Using “Strengths” to Manage and Boost Productivity

Posted in Assessments, Coaching, Leadership, Management, Productivity, Professional Development, Work Satisfaction
In a December 13, 2006 Legal Times article extolling the energy and talents of Pamela Rothenberg, the managing partner of Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice’s Washington D.C. office, Rothenberg stressed how much she relies on The Gallup Organization strengths, an assessment that is described in the book First, Break All the Rules: What the World’s… Continue Reading

Companies Unhappy With their Law Firms

Posted in Assessments, Leadership, Management, Productivity, Professional Development, Risk Management
BTI Consulting Group recently announced the results of its sixth annual client service survey, with the conclusion that corporate America is not very happy with their law firms.  Of the more than 250 corporate counsel and top executives interviewed over the past year, only 32% said that they would recommend a firm that worked for them.… Continue Reading

Recent Books on Women in Law and Balancing Work/Life

Posted in Books, Management, Professional Development, Work Satisfaction, Work/Life Balance
Two recent books highlight some of the challenges in building strong practices:  retaining and promoting women and balancing life and work. Ending the Gauntlet: Removing Barriers to Women’s Success in the Law (Thomson/Legalworks, 2006) by Lauren Stiller Rikleen, a partner at the Massachusetts law firm Bowditch & Dewey, reviews the lack of professional fulfillment and the… Continue Reading

Recent Books on Brains and Gender-Based Differences

Posted in Books, Leadership, Management, Professional Development
Two recently published books by female doctors highlight some of the differences between the genders in brain development and differentiation, and give insights as to how to best use our diverse legal talent pool. The Female Brain by Dr. Louann Brizendine explores the differences in the way women process thoughts compared with the way men… Continue Reading

The Supreme Court Falters in the Diversity of its Clerks

Posted in Diversity, Management
Women have suddenly become scarce among the Supreme Court Justices’ clerks, the New York Times reported August 30, 2006. While 50% of law school graduates in 2005 were women, only 7 of the 37 Supreme Court law clerkships are women, the first time since 1994 that the number has been in the single digits. Justices Breyer, Ginsburg,… Continue Reading

Recent Developments in Diversity–Chicago, Texas, California, Connecticut, Maine

Posted in Diversity, Management, Risk Management, Work Satisfaction, Work/Life Balance
The National Law Journal has carried stories on several firms or regions where diversity has taken a front seat. On July 2, 2006, it reported that several Chicago firms had announced their intention to build their diversity numbers, responding to the Chicago Bar Association’s initiative, the “Alliance for Women.” So far, the firms involved are outperforming both… Continue Reading

Five New Studies on Diversity in Law

Posted in Leadership, Management, Mentoring, Professional Development, Retention, Risk Management, Work Satisfaction, Work/Life Balance
The last few months have seen five new studies relating to diversity and the practice of law: 1.  A new study by the ABA’s Commission on Women in the Professions entitled “Visible Invisibility: Women of Color in Law Firms” found that few women of color are offered equal opportunity and most choose to leave their firms rather… Continue Reading

Update in Strides Against Sexual Harassment

Posted in Diversity, Leadership, Management, Professional Development, Risk Management, Work Satisfaction
Sexual harassment came to the legal profession in 1994, when a secretary at Baker & McKenzie filed a discrimination case against the firm and a partner. In 1998, a California Superior Court jury awarded her $7 million and the landscape of law firm conduct was trumpeted as being in the midst of a major change.  Last… Continue Reading

Partnering with Law Schools to Improve Diversity

Posted in Law Education, Mentoring, Professional Development
Pepper Hamilton has recruited one of their of-counsel attorneys who sits on a diversity committee to be responsible for a new program that Pepper Hamilton is sponsoring with Villanova University School of Law.  Pepper Hamilton will provide two three-year law school scholarships, help screen applicants for the scholarships, hire minority law students as summer associates… Continue Reading