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re Fresh your Law Firm - UGM Consulting

re Fresh your Law Firm - UGM Consulting

re Fresh your Law Firm - UGM

Aug 08 Dr Margaret Byrnehttp://www.alpma.com.au/Aug_08_Dr_Margaret_Byrne.htmPage 1 of 310/9/2008Legal Practice Management NewsAugust 08 National Newsletter‘BUILD IT AND THEY’LL COME’:TALENT MANAGEMENT ANDDIVERSITY IN LAW FIRMSDr. Margaret Byrne, UGM ConsultingMeet Dr. ByrneAround The StatesPresidents PageOne of the terrific (and attimes frightening) parts ofinvolvement with theconference committee (evenin a peripheral sense) issetting conference program.Trying to work ...For most law firms today, the engine driving strategic success and profitability is their talent – itsdepth and its quality. But in an era where unprecedented skill shortages face all sectors of theAustralian economy, law firms now find themselves in the thick of what’s been termed a ‘war fortalent’ – how to attract it, how to build it and, most importantly, how to keep it. Law firms in allstates are experiencing a painful truth: today talent is tougher to find and keep, and easier thanever to squander and lose. In this context, it’s no surprise that how to manage talent well comeshigh on every firm’s strategic agenda. Yet many still lean heavily on outdated ways of thinkingthat don’t match current workplace realities and don’t take into account today’s demographiccomplexity.In this article, I’ll outline research evidence from studies conducted in Australia andinternationally, including research specifically undertaken by UGM Consulting in several largeAustralian law firms. The article seeks to show a link between modern ways of thinking aboutdiversity and talent. Managing diversity and managing talent become synonymous when thefirm’s talent no longer comes neatly packaged in a convenient, homogeneous style. Instead,these two are positioned as subsets of what is now widely described as ‘human capital strategy’:a strategic and business-outcomes approach to the old rhetoric of ‘people are our best asset’.For the latest news in yourstate, click your state linkbelow:QueenslandNew South WalesSouth AustraliaVictoriaIn this approach, organizations in all sectors and markets challenge themselves to actually ‘walkthe talk’ when it comes to the management of their talent. It means shifting from ways of thinkingand acting that maximize the value of financial capital but take little account of the intangibleassets which are the true sources of value in a knowledge economy – people. When we bring thesame focus and rigour to thinking about our people that historically we have tended to bring toother aspects of the firm’s management, then it takes us to the heart of the matter: how can wedeeply engage and motivate our diverse talent so that the firm can become a magnet, drawingthe best people to it? How can we build the kind of firm where people want to come and be partof what we’ve created?2008 LegalManagement Summitre Fresh yourLaw FirmThe article also provides some background for my presentation to the ALPMA Conference inSydney on 11 October, 2008, where the practical implications for action will be explored moredeeply.While the ‘war for talent’ is a genuine problem for all the organizations UGM Consulting assists,

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