The Lab invests money and time in legal talent projects developed by innovative and forward-thinking individuals in the legal profession who want to improve the lives of lawyers and the industry as a whole. Two examples of these types of projects are detailed below.
If you have developed or know of a project that is talent related and will likely improve the legal profession or the lives of lawyers, please contact Caren Ulrich Stacy at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information about the Lab’s investment options.
Two amazing Arizona lawyers, Alison Christian and Beth Fitch, started Ladder Down in 2013 to help women lawyers leverage their skills and experience to become rainmakers and leaders in their firms.
This grassroots movement began because two women sought to improve the lives of junior women coming up through the ranks by asking more senior women to put the “ladder down” and support their colleagues’ efforts to achieve success (as defined by each woman individually). 24 women lawyers graduated from the first program in December 2013. The results were astonishing. Over the one-year course, the participating women experienced measurable improvements in their careers, including: promotions to partnership, new clients, expanded networks, robust referral networks, substantial raises, firm transitions, and a universal increase in community involvement. Participants negotiated their salaries (some for the first time), developed business plans, and gained speaking and publishing opportunities. They landed positions on boards, fought for origination credit, and learned to state their accomplishments often and proudly. In addition to these “external” changes, they saw internal changes, including: increased confidence at networking events, a newfound ability to resolve conflict, a commitment to prioritizing business development, and a better understanding of themselves.
The Lab is helping the founders of Ladder Down take this grassroots movement national – including developing a website, logo, and business structure – so other cities and groups can start and benefit from similar programs.
Former Law Firm Leaders Cohort
Several former law firm and legal department leaders – chairs, managing partners, and general counsels – are working together to “give back” and improve the profession after their years of service as the leaders of major legal organizations.
The Lab’s Founder is working directly with a former AmLaw 50 chairman to start the group, identify specific projects for the group to tackle, and facilitate the effort to produce results that improve the profession.