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Diverse Ethics - Atul Shah - Wisdom Blog

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CULTURE CHANGE IN LAW FIRMS

There has just been another new announcement about the importance of social mobility in law firms - the desire to attract people from all classes and backgrounds - you can read more about it in Legal Week here. However, the bitter truth is that law firms have been exclusive and conservative for a long time, and this has now become the culture and mindset of prominent lawyers today - if not consciously, then definitely sub-consciously. If this issue is not addressed, even if ethnic minorities and poor people are recruited, they will not rise through the organisation. Here are some practical suggestions about what can be done to change the culture of law firms:

  • Creative training of leaders and senior managers about why equality is critical,  and how they can benefit from it personally (ie it is not just about doing favours to others)
  • Recruitment of senior lawyers from different social classes to show a diverse leadership
  • Reforming the internal promotion and progression structures, and investing heavily in mentoring and support of minority staff
  • Changing the branding and communications to reflect and showcase diversity and emphasise its critical importance
  • Improving Cultural Intelligence throughout the organisation

Article added on 13th January 2012 at 8:40am
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