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Agile working, flexible working or whatever one wants to call it, is a growing phenomenon. What these euphemisms for ‘sometimes working from home’ indicate is that there is an appetite for lawyers to not be permanently stuck in the air conditioned boxes where they would otherwise spend a large part of their adult lives.
More and more law firms are offering their lawyers, mostly junior lawyers it seems at the moment, the opportunity to work remotely. Some also allow support staff to work from home. How many days a week or per month this is allowed varies. Firms are no doubt testing the waters before allowing their lawyers totally off the leash and out of the gates.
Why is this happening and why now?
Throughout history there have been lawyers who one day were sitting at their desks in the firm’s office, proofreading a contract for the tenth time that week when a thought popped into their heads: ‘Hey, I could just do this kind of thing at home. It would be a lot more convenient and it would make no difference at all to the work I’m doing for the client.’
Yet, it’s only really in the last few years that law firms have been embracing this seemingly obvious fact. Why? The first reason that is trotted out is that it’s all due to ‘Millennials’. Personally I’m not a big fan of typecasting hundreds of millions of people around the world by the year they were born.
Perhaps a better way of looking at generational change is that as technology, society and the economy changes so do opportunities for new types of behaviour and those changes tend to come in waves. Technology now allows us to conduct nearly our entire professional lives from our sofas, if that is what we want. From their sofa a lawyer can:
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Richard helps law firms with important strategic decisions. He
advises on areas such as merger, practice development and geographical
expansion. He also provides assistance to law firms in relation to
organisational and operational issues.
Richard has spent over 16 years working in the legal sector focused
on the UK and global legal markets. He previously worked at Jomati as a
strategy consultant and authored the Jomati Report series between 2009
Prior to that, Richard worked at US-based, Hildebrandt International,
and also held senior, legal sector editorial roles in London and Paris.
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