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AGENDA: Wednesday, October 14th, 2020

08:00 AM
REGISTRATION & CHECK-IN
09:00 AM
OPENING COMMENTS


09:15 AM
Promoting Diversity & Inclusion in Law Firms & Corporations: Disrupting Old Models & Lowering Attrition

According to McKinsey & Company, the Harvard Business Review and other highly respected institutions, organizations that commit themselves to diverse leadership, are more successful and more profitable. A growing body of evidence is finding that gender parity and racial diversity, particularly in decision-making roles, has a meaningful impact on innovation, productivity, and profitability. This is not breaking news. Why then is the legal field still lagging behind? The answer is that there is no single answer. Change will happen when the issue is pushed by both the law firm and the client.

This panel will explore:

  • How can In-House counsel have a direct impact, not only by fostering an inclusive culture within their departments, but also by committing to hiring law firms that employ and promote women and minorities?
  • What steps law firms can take, such as re-thinking the allocation of origination credit, instituting a gender-diverse committee and third-party oversight of the firm’s practices, and ensuring the firm’s succession plan is gender neutral?
  • What can individual counsel do to affect organizational culture?








10:00 AM
NETWORKING BREAK
10:15 AM
Countering the #MeToo Backlash: Enlisting Men to Become Ambassadors for Change

Rarely do we see inclusion strategies that stress the need to include, listen to, and work with the dominant group — the one that is seeing its preeminence questioned. However, that is where leadership is most needed: in helping today’s dominant group embrace tomorrow’s reality. While it goes without question that women and minorities in positions of power must help others to move the needle, a better approach may be to engage everyone in bringing about change. When it comes to women’s advancement, men matter. 

This panel will explore:

  • Identifying Male Allies
  • Developing an engagement strategy
  • How can you self-advocate in order to get buy-in from others?
  • What can law firms and corporations do to help?
  • Tips and success stories from the panelists






11:00 AM
NETWORKING BREAK
11:15 AM
The Time for Change is Now: Developing & Promoting Leaders of Color

Leaders of color are resolute in their determination to get ahead. Why then do so few make it to the top in Big Law or major corporations? The numbers are abysmal with 2.81 percent in equity partnership positions and 3.9 percent in the C-suite. Due to ongoing events since the spring of 2020, public outcry for change is at an all-time high. And while diversity and inclusion initiatives are becoming more commonplace in both law firms and corporate America, progress is slow.

This panel will explore:

  • The challenges that minority leaders face in the legal profession
  • Why law firms and other employers should care about retaining and advancing people of color
  • Performative vs. Sustainable change
  • Affinity groups and other resources
  • Success stories - Advice for young attorneys of color






12:00 PM
NETWORKING BREAK
12:15 PM
Working through Generational Diversity Among Leaders & Emerging Leaders (Boomers v. Gen X v. Millennials)

This is a timely topic now that the workplace is as age-diverse as ever before. And it seems that the generations differ on how things should be run in the workplace. Older workers say they feel like they are being pushed out while younger workers are leaving in large numbers because they feel under-valued. If organizations are going to thrive, everyone needs to understand their coworkers and, most importantly, avoid letting their implicit biases get in the way.

This panel will explore:

  • How to work through the stereotypes that encourage bias
  • Understanding and appreciating differences in perspectives
  • How to encourage better communication in order to bridge the gap
  • Constructive mentoring (formal and informal)
  • Succession planning that works for all








01:00 PM
NETWORKING BREAK
01:15 PM
Redefining Success in the Age of COVID-19: The Bridge to the New Normal

Women often do not apply for a job or a promotion if they don’t check every box, whereas men regularly seek jobs for which they are only partially qualified. The challenge can be even more daunting when considering a dream job or career choice that is not part of the normal trajectory. While the virus has pushed us out of our comfort zones, it has also presented a unique opportunity to explore our options. Pursuing these options (whether it be a raise, a promotion or a nontraditional path) requires the confidence courage to see your own potential in order to go after what is important to you.

This panel will explore:

  • Letting go of the past and finding new ways of adapting to the changes ahead
  • Getting clear with what you really want and making the current climate work for you
  • The ASK: Asking for what you want and knowing why you deserve
  • The role of sponsors, mentors and allies in getting us closer to our goals
  • How best to advocate for ourselves and others








02:00 PM
NETWORKING BREAK
02:15 PM
The Executive Suite & The Legal Team: Working Together to Create a More Diverse Culture

Women leaders in both business and the legal profession are still rare. Because creating and maintaining a gender-balanced workforce is no longer a gesture of good will, but essential to financial growth, finding ways to foster diversity in corporate leadership is imperative.

This panel will explore:

  • Bridging the gap between the business and legal units
  • Recruiting and sustaining female talent
  • Increasing awareness of the effects of implicit biases around female stereotypes
    • They are not tough enough
    • They are more invested in their families than their careers
  • Tips and Success stories






03:00 PM
NETWORKING BREAK
03:15 PM
Career Transitions: From Associate to Partner, Law Firm to In-house

Change—even positive change such as making partner—is never easy. While the title carries more respect, more responsibility comes with it. Considering going from a law firm to an in-house counsel position? Making the move is more complicated than it seems. There are numerous differences between working in an in-house counsel role, as opposed to working at a law firm. Culture, salary, and workplace flexibility, are just a few of the many things to keep in mind.

This panel will explore:

  • Tips for new partners:
    • Learning how the business is managed and what is expected of you
    • Balancing your practice with your new obligations
    • Understanding your new compensation, benefits and tax structure
    • Keeping sight of your personal life
  • Tips for transitioning from a law firm to in-house:
    • Gaining insight into the company’s core business, initiatives and goals
    • Developing your business acumen in order to proactively offer legal solutions that advance and support the bottom line
    • Learning to work effectively with both the department and the business unit: Communication is key!






04:00 PM
NETWORKING RECEPTION & RAFFLE