Diversity is not a cookie cutter element in a law firm. Regardless of being a small, mid-size or large law practice, diversity will vary by population-based factors.
One benefit to being a larger firm, is having a Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) department. This department assists with bringing in diverse attorneys from different backgrounds and cultures to help resolve legal challenges. This department offers programs to hire and develop diverse talent, reports on metrics and finds new ways to provide inclusion and fairness in the work environment.
This can be a disadvantage to small and mid-size law firms because they may not have the funds or resources to establish their own department. Because of this, attorneys have to find creative ways to build diversity into their law practice. The challenges of diversity, inclusion, and equality include: location, salary, attorneys of color, attorneys of different cultures, and flexible schedules to fit diverse needs.
According to the latest ABA National Lawyer Population Survey, 86% of lawyers are white, a statistic that hasn’t changed much over the past decade. Additionally, the survey also indicated that only 37% of lawyers were female.
When it comes to diversity and inclusion, what are the benefits of having diversity in the workplace?
– Different viewpoints and problem solving
– The ability to generate different ideas
– Better understanding of cultures and people around them
If you don’t have a D&I department, consider building an internal diversity committee or association to promote diversity through strategies, recommendations and challenges. This team can create policies, training, procedures, and best practices. Use this opportunity to make sure that everyone is heard and find ways to celebrate different cultures. Most importantly, set and measure goals where you can evaluate, reconsider, and move forward in what is best for the firm.
Diversity in the workplace is giving all employees equal and fair treatment and provides opportunities to young, diverse lawyers. So what does diversity mean for a small to mid-size firm? It means that you recognize talent regardless of age, gender, race, or culture. It means that your firm is willing to accept and represent different cultures and backgrounds. It shows a willingness to accept people as they are. It can provide you with opportunities and creative solutions with new and unique opinions and different approaches to the decision making progress.
Whether you are a small, mid-size, or large law practice, diversity matters. Diversity is important and diversity will push you towards success.
We help lawyers grow great practices and cultivate great lives. Diversity is an important element to help us grow as successful law firm coaching experts. Our team is dynamic, creative, and innovative.
We have developed strategic growth concepts to help increase profitability and cashflow, sharpen focus and prioritize, attract high value clients, and build a great team. We deliver these concepts through our group and one on one coaching programs led by highly trained and certified coaches.