Tuesday, February 08, 2005


Inclusion or Illusion: Is Your Law Firm REALLY Committed to Diversity?

Jason M., an Asian-American law student, graduated from a top law school and was eager to start his law career. Throughout his job search he focused on firms that communicated a commitment to creating a diverse and inclusive workforce. Within 6 months of accepting the firm’s offer, Jason quickly realized that the firm’s commitment to diversity and inclusion was little more than an illusion.

Martizia F., an African-American woman, spent the majority of her academic and professional career in predominately white male work environments. She was looking for a law firm that had a decent representation of women and attorneys of color and a commitment to increasing its level of diversity. She was excited to receive an offer from a firm that seemed to meet her criteria. In the 3-month time frame between accepting the offer and starting work, five of the seven women in the mid-size firm had resigned—the remaining two were working with recruiters. Martizia learned that the women left for firms that were more open and committed to creating a work environment where the desire to create diversity went beyond mere lip service.

These examples aren’t unusual. Firms are under pressure to recruit talented women and minorities. However, many firms lack the requisite systems and skills to retain, promote, and support a diverse workforce. Deciding where you’ll work is a critically important decision. What should a lawyer look for when trying to determine a firm’s commitment to diversity and inclusion? Following are some key signs that reveal a firm’s true commitment to diversity.
To read more, click here http://www.wetfeet.com/asp/article.asp?aid=614&atype=Diversity

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