(CLE 90 min – Eth & Prof)
The global pandemic has caused an upheaval in the legal profession with spikes in mental health problems and anxiety about returning to the office and retraction of flexible working. But, demand for legal work has remained strong and the market for new talent has been highly competitive. At the same time, media reports reflect that over 40% of workers nationwide are considering exiting their jobs or professions as part of “The Great Resignation.” Generational tensions also are apparent, with younger lawyers wanting firms to place a higher priority on well-being and supporting non-work priorities. While such complex issues cannot be solved easily or quickly, our panel will offer initial insights. They will focus on how partners and other supervising lawyers can better support their teams in ways that not only will support mental health and well-being, but also can help retain and attract top talent. Using a fireside chat format, Libby Coreno will focus on three ways that supervising lawyers can provide support: work flexibility, person-centered leadership, and practices to enable teams to unplug.
Segment 1: Introduction Duration: 10 minutes
Libby Coreno, co-chair of the New York State Bar Association Well-Being Task Force, will introduce the session and set the stage for the discussion.
Duration: 10 minutes
Segment 2: Person-Centered Management Duration: 20 minutes
Amanda Smith, chief engagement officer at Morgan Lewis, will talk about practical strategies that partners and other supervisory lawyers can employ to integrate well-being, engagement, and inclusion into day-to-day management of teams and steps that firms and other legal employers can take to incorporate the same into core management principles.
Segment 3: Supporting Work Flexibility Duration: 20 minutes
Description: Stephanie Scharf, an esteemed thought-leader on gender issues in the legal profession, will talk about the imperative of flexibility for well-being and retention of women lawyers, as well as supervisory strategies for supporting flexibility. See Stephanie’s recent articles “Hybrid Work Models Are Key To Gender Parity In Law Firms” and “Law Firm Talent Must Reflect Shifting US Demographics.”
Segment 4: Enabling Your Team To Unplug Duration: 20 minutes
Lawyers’ ability to unplug is crucial to protecting and promoting well-being and preventing burnout. Many lawyers work in teams, which impacts their ability to manage their own work and non-work priorities. As Harvard Business School Professor Lisa Perlow put it in her article “Manage Your Team’s Collective Time:” “[I]n the modern workplace, with its emphasis on connectivity and collaboration, the real problem is not how individuals manage their own time. It’s how we manage our collective time—how we work together to get the job done.” This also encompasses supporting team members’ work-life management efforts (see “Supervisor Work/Life Training Gets Results”). In this segment, law firm partner Richard Amador will talk about his own such practices for supporting his team members’ well-being.
Duration: 20 minutes
Segment 5: Wrap-up Duration: 10 minutes
Libby Coreno will do a wrap-up and give closing thoughts.
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