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Fringe Legal #34: Innovation management for law firm

Fringe Legal #34: Innovation management for law firm

Happy Sunday/Monday (depending on your time zone). No lengthy commentary this week, just three items to highlight.

Innovation Management For Law Firms


I sat down with Floor Blindenbach to speak about the state of innovation management in the legal profession. I came across the whitepaper on the topic at the SKILLS event held a few weeks ago. Some key points:

Innovation as a process

It's [innovation] not only a process, but it's also even like a value chain, which starts with idea generation, development and then implementation, and then scale. You need to be good at all these steps to create results. Suppose you're just extraordinary at creating ideas, so for instance, if you have a firm that is super-duper in doing hackathons, you get hundreds of ideas, but if you don't know how to develop them and implement them, what is it worth to create all these ideas?

Defining innovation

I have a pretty broad definition, as long as you embark on an idea that the firm has not done before... So this can be a new process, can be a technology, can be a new practice group, or it can be an improvement. However, it needs to be something that has a direct or an indirect benefit to the client.

Testing assumptions

We know that testing your assumptions is really important, but explicating the assumptions you're making is really difficult. For an outsider, it's really easy. For me, if I train the team, I hear all the assumptions they're making, but for them, they are the truth.

You can listen to the episode here with a transcript or watch the conversation on YouTube.

#GreatExpectations for the #GreatReset


Jae Um has penned a series of essays on how and why the legal profession has changed in the past decade. It provides a retrospective, current market analysis, and highlights trends to watch for the next five years.

The essays are collated together into a 5-part series available on Legal Evolution. If you are not familiar with Jae's work, expect long-form content, lots of data, analysis, and plentiful insights.

Start with part 1 here (others are linked in the article).

Jae is also doing a three hour AMA (ask me anything) on Feb 18th at 3pm New York, 8pm London, 7am Sydney (19th). It's a text-based AMA, so feel free to submit questions early or visit after it's finished to read all responses. Find more here.

Change vs. transformation


In issue #23, I wrote about the difference between change and transformation. I visited the metaphor frequently and thought a visual might help with a broader understanding.

Join the conversation on LinkedIn, and let me know your view.

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