Career Management and Professional Development in Law Departments

In today’s corporate law departments, it is not enough to hire good practitioners – excellent legal work is simply the ante to get into the game. Lawyers also must be leaders and good business partners.  It is critically important for General Counsel to maximize the department’s human resources by putting the right people in the right seats, recognizing and rewarding individual contributions and eliciting the highest performance from each member of the team.

Altman Weil experts work with law departments to develop systems and structures designed to attract, motivate, retain and develop lawyer talent, including:

Compensation Practices – The right compensation system can be a tool to attract the right talent, drive desired behaviors and align individual performance with organizational goals.  Altman Weil consultants will work with your department to develop a system that is internally fair, externally competitive and clearly understood by all.  We also can help you convincingly communicate your department’s compensation needs to your HR department.

Career Ladders – Structuring career ladders that include management opportunities as well as roles for specialty practitioners is critical for lawyer morale and retention.  Altman Weil consultants will help you develop and integrate a career progression plan and titling system that recognizes and rewards the spectrum of lawyer contributions.

Performance Management and Evaluation – Establishing performance goals and objectives and providing candid, constructive feedback is essential to a high performing law department.  We will help you develop performance profiles and standards for the lawyers in your department; design feedback systems, including 360? reviews, to capture manager, client and colleague input; and, provide you with the tools to manage – and maximize – lawyer performance.

Professional Development – All members of your law department should have development plans in place designed to improve their skills and performance. Altman Weil consultants will help you select and develop the best tools, including mentoring programs, individual developmental coaching, and rotation programs, as well as other more traditional training.

Leadership Development – Leadership talent is essential to organizational success as a service provider and as a corporate business partner. Our experts will work with you to develop a practical leadership program that provides both academic and real-world training opportunities. 

Coaching – Coaching has become a key benefit for today’s high potential performers in corporate law departments.  Altman Weil’s Certified Master Coaches can work one-on-one with key department lawyers to enhance their leadership competencies or with emerging leaders to develop their skills, confidence and judgment. 

How You Benefit

By investing time, energy and resources in lawyer development, your law department will realize a return in enhanced morale, performance and retention, improved client service and satisfaction, and, ultimately, the cost-effective provision of high quality legal services.

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