Tuesday, October 3, 2006

Teaching Leadership to Law Firm Associates

A commercial conference organizer is offering a "Law Firm Associate Leadership Summit" that has been certified for CLE credit in New York and California.  Part of the pitch:  "Becoming a successful attorney takes more than just great legal skills. Success depends upon proving to your firm that you are a manager, leader, business developer, and mentor. The years spent in law school and as a junior associate don’t teach you these crucial skills, and if you wait to learn them when you make partner…"

Is the factual assertion true?  Are these crucial skills, and are they not taught?  Are they teachable?  Do law firms really want them taught?  Are senior law firm partners, when asked by deans for contributions, demanding more leadership education?  If these skills are not taught by law schools, why are they not taught by the law firms themselves?  Perhaps economic theory might tell us something here....

--Jeff Lipshaw


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