Personnel Policies and the Employee Handbook

It is important for efficient management and good employee relations that an employer have carefully considered and clearly stated personnel policies which are communicated to the staff. A number of personnel policies are affected by various labor laws, both federal and state, and some, such as those...

Power Up Your Firm’s Diversity Strategy: Employ BI to Fill the Information Gaps

Diversity is now squarely a priority for law firms. Many law firms have diversity committees, and many have hired diversity directors. Much attention has been paid to firm recruitment and promotion processes. Mission statements, web sites and policies have been rewritten. Unfortunately, few firms have...

US Supreme Court Heightens Burden for ADEA Claims

In a decision that came as a surprise to employers and employees alike, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that the longstanding standard of proof for mixed motive discrimination cases set forth in its Price Waterhouse decision of 1989 does not apply to employees who bring actions under the Age Discrimination...

Double Check that e-mail Message Before You Hit Send!

Since the era of electronic mail began, computer users have been inadvertently hitting the wrong buttons (i.e., "Reply to All") when sending e-mail messages, often resulting in embarrassing - or even worse - consequences. Recently a company in Idaho paid the price for such a mistake. In...

Integration, Training & Professional Development

Employers have an enormous stake in the transition from law school to law practice. If personnel costs are the firm's largest expense, and people are its most important assets, it is good business to make every effort to protect such valuable assets. Too often new associates are brought into a firm...

Law Firm Succession Planning

A recent article in the Journal of Accountancy offers timely succession planning insights for certified public accountants, which are equally relevant for attorneys who own their own practices. In "A 2009 Tuneup for Your Firm's Succession Planning", Dominic Cingoranelli writes: "The...

Building Cross-Competency in Law Firms

Many law firms invest considerable time, effort, and resources in cross-training younger lawyers to work in more than one practice area. Cross-training is a worthwhile investment, but often a very costly one. This Green Paper outlines a new approach to cross training, which achieves well-defined, measurable...

When It’s Too Late for Succession Planning

Business succession and generational transition are no longer just theoretical issues or problems to be deferred until sometime in the future. By our estimates, a majority of the law firms in the world - perhaps as many as 75% of them - are now or within the next ten years will be, confronting the need...

Lessons of Recession Could be Forgotten after Turn-around

Taking into account all of the trends and statistics of the new economy, there will be several imminent changes that will appreciably affect new legal careers. Most likely, firms will keep the billable hour, will move to merit-based compensation, and will likely continue to have minimal minority representation...