S1.E7 Angela Dowd on developing an innovator’s mindset

Angela Dowd is the Director of Practice Innovation for the law firm of Burns & Levinson LLP in Boston, Massachusetts. In her current role with the firm, she is works with practice groups and administrative departments to increase efficiency and streamline business processes. She has also been active member of the International Legal Technology Association (ILTA) for many years, speaking at the annual conference. She is in her second term on the Board of Directors, currently serving as President. In addition, she has spoken at Association of Legal Administrators, Legal Marketing Association and the Law Firm Alliance conferences.

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In this episode I speak to the brilliant Angela Dowd. We really focus the conversation on how to develop a innovator’s mindset, and lessons learnt as Director of Practice Innovation at Burns & Levinson LLP, and as the President of the Board of Directors at ILTA.

Some of the highlights include: (numbers are time codes)

  • Angela’s “organic, rambling path” into legal: going from chemical engineering, HR, training, applications and innovation → 1.20
  • Symptomatic problem solving vs business problem solving → 4.17
  • Instead of suggesting solutions, focus on learning about the problem the user is trying to solve → 5.40
  • The challenges and benefits of working in a “firm of laterals” → 7.20
  • “Cross fertilization of innovative ideas” → 10.45
  • Make gain where you can, and tying innovation initiatives to business problems → 12.32
  • Resistance to change vs desire to change → 13.48
  • Reverse mentoring on as a tool to challenge your assumptions → 25.00
  • What’s on the horizon for the legal profession → 30.00
About the Author
Ab is the Host of the Fringe Legal podcast. He is a technologist, with an interest in LegalTech. Outside of the podcast, Ab is the VP, International Business at Litera. He is a Barrister (non-practicing), and was called to the Bar of England and Wales in 2015. Abhijat holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Forensic Science and Neuroscience from the University of Keele, UK.