Five years ago, a committed group of law firm leaders and law firm service providers embarked on a journey to reimagine the legal profession with a futurist’s view.
While many innovation journeys begin with an examination of the current state of a business, team, product or service in order to determine how to make what exists better, this innovation journey was different.
I think many law firms historically acquired their clients first and their markets second. Somewhere early in a firm’s genesis, one of its lawyers landed a client and performed the assigned tasks well; impressed, that client hired the lawyer again and recommended the lawyer to a similar client, which also retained the lawyer, and more followed.
HP’s legal department recently announced that it will withhold up to 10 percent of fees from law firms that do not meet its diversity standards, to draw attention to law’s lagging performance in advancing diversity.
Innovation has been the buzzword in the legal sector for several years. These days, there is a seminar or conference on innovation or IT disruption in the legal sector every week. Fueled by these repeated messages, many law firms start building apps, giving models away for free or embark on using software for such tasks as due diligence.
Born and raised in Austria, Roland Vogl fell in love with California almost from the moment he arrived in 1999 as a student at Stanford Law School. In particular, he was drawn to the entrepreneurial ethos of Stanford's home base of Silicon Valley.
"The idea of being in Silicon Valley and being immersed in the gung-ho spirit where people solve problems—not so much by policy and lawmaking but by building new systems—really appealed to me," says Vogl, a 2017 Legal Rebels Trailblazer.
The website Lawyerist focuses on getting attorneys information they want. Determining what that is isn't hard, says founder Sam Glover, because readers frequently tell him through the site's discussion forum or on social media.