Saturday, April 6, 2019

Lawyers as Leaders

For the past two days, I had the privilege of attending a leadership conference hosted by UT Law's Institute for Professional Leadership.  I admit to being pretty passionate about leadership literature, training, and cultivation.  Some of that zeal no doubt comes from working with and studying the scholarship of business management.  However, I also have participated in two academic leadership training programs over the past ten years, the Higher Education Resources Service's HERS Institute and the Southeastern Athletics Conference's Academic Leadership Development Program.  Both were true eye-openers for me at a time when I was poised to assume a leadership role as our campus faculty senate president.

The conference this week was on developing leadership in lawyers.  It is part of a series of conferences/symposia that a group of law faculty interested in this topic have been convening for a number of years now.  Articles emanating from prior event proceedings are published here and here.   The authors of many of the articles in those law review books have also authored stand-alone books and other works on leadership in the legal profession published elsewhere.

This week's conference treatments of the topic spanned a wide range, addressing (for instance) the places and methods for training lawyers to be leaders, since lawyers hold a disproportionately high number of leadership positions in the public sector.  I enjoyed it all, but I was particularly inspired by the workshop on integrating well-being into leadership curricula, the roundtable discussions on what is already being done and what law practice needs, and the student/alumni panel on the importance and effectiveness of law school courses on leadership.  There were lots of good ideas shared in these sessions and throughout the conference, and many seeds were sowed for action and further discussion.  I hope to roll some of those ideas out on the BLPB over time.

Btw, the UT Law Institute for Professional Leadership has a blog.  I plan to author some posts for the blog that I will certainly highlight here.  But if you are interested in this topic more broadly, you may want to sign up to follow the blog by email (an option available on the blog site).  Also, feel free to contact me or the Institute's director, Doug Blaze, for more information.

Joan Heminway, Lawyering | Permalink


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