16 February 2024

Diversity: The way we live now

No one can doubt that law firms are significantly more diverse than they were a generation ago.

They have collectively bought into the wealth of research which shows that more diverse and inclusive teams make better decisions and help to deliver better financial outcomes. They also acknowledge that the DEI engine is comprised of many moving parts: gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, age, and faith all play a part, as do background and education. In support of this, there is an increased focus on data gathering, pay reporting, and the setting of diversity demographic targets. Yet despite the pace of change continuing to accelerate, there is still a way to go. This really hit home when the much-lauded managing partner of a large UK law firm recently told me: “Ah yes, diversity – we’ve all ticked that box.” To spare blushes, that person is not identified, but the view that diversity is no more than a box to be ticked only serves to underline the scale of the challenge that persists.

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