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Thoughts on Digital Collaboration

Collaboration is the mantra of our new economy. Yet in the legal market, computer-based collaboration is limited. Here are some possible reasons. . .  At a recent meeting of large law firm knowledge management professionals, Michael Mills, Director of Professional Services &

GE – Online Auction and Best Practices

I have written before about GE using auctions to buy legal services. Corporate Legal Times reports GE recently used an online auction to choose its final firms.  Bidding Wars (Sept 2005) reports that GE used 500 firms last year. After a cut based on quality, and then one based on

Metrics – Agonizing or Essential

I recently commented on a Corporate Legal Times (July 2005) article on offshoring. An observation it makes about one of the challenges to offshoring – developing metrics – struck me as having broader applicability.  From Overhyped, Underused, Overrated: The Truth Abou

Doctors Mend Their Ways – Can Lawyers?

Yesterday the Wall Street Journal reported that “anesthesiologists pay less for malpractice insurance today, in constant dollars, than they did 20 years ago.” This is a result of a conscious effort – one with lessons for lawyers.  In the lead story, Once Seen as

Open Compliance and Ethics Group

Via the editorial in the June issue of Corporate Legal Times, I learned today about a fascinating organization called The Open Compliance and Ethics Group.  OECG is a not-for-profit consortium that, among other goals, seeks to “provide a flexible and practical best practice

The Legal Profession in 20 Years

It’s year-end. Forget about predictions for 2005. What will the legal profession look like in 20 years???  In Law Practice Today, an ABA online magazine, John Tredennick organizes a forum, Looking to the Future: What Changes Do You See Coming in the Next Twenty Years?, in w

First Comes the Selling, Then the Doing?

When it comes to selling, firms increasingly recognize that lawyers need coaching. We can only hope that when it comes to doing the work, law firms recognize the same is true.  Video Trains Lawyers Not to Be Boors in the National Law Journal reports that Pillsbury Winthrop has cr

In Support of Best Practices

My prior post discussed a recent article suggesting that the search for best practices may be fruitless. I believe that the problem is less in defining best practices and more in the mindset of lawyers.  [Since my prior post, the article, The Quest for the Best Law Department Man

Best Practices Questioned

I periodically blog on the topic of best practices so was intrigued to read “The Quest for the Best” in the Legal Times (11/15/04, subscription required). In it, management consultant Rees Morrison argues that the quest for best practices is akin to the search for the Holy

Technology is Not Enough

Consulting company McKinsey has found that information technology investment by itself has little effect on productivity. Management practices have a much bigger impact on productivity.  When IT lifts productivity in the The McKinsey Quarterly (2004, #4; free registration may be