Thursday, March 12, 2020
American Lawyer, Should Law Schools Do More to Develop Business-Ready Attorneys?:
While many law firms are bulking up their professional development offerings to better prepare associates earlier in their careers, some experts point out that it’s even more cost-effective for law schools to bear the brunt of the training.
This is the idea behind the “T-shaped lawyer,” a theory developed by Indiana University Maurer School of Law professor William Henderson. In his mind, attorneys need to not only have the deep legal expertise learned in law school (the long, vertical part of the letter T), but also professional, business and technology skills (the shorter, horizontal part of the T) to be coveted by many Am Law 200 firms.
“The T-shaped lawyer is important because they can do work that is not highly specialized, such as data processing, business operations principles—these lawyers are good at formulating solutions that deal with a client’s needs for less,” he says. “Many Am Law 200 firms want this type of attorney.”
For more on T-shaped lawyers, see:
- The Institute for the Future of Law Practice (Feb. 11, 2018)
- Confusing Conversations About Clients (May 6, 2018)
- Two Types of Legal Innovation: Type 0 Substantive Law, Type 1 Service Delivery (Oct. 28, 2018)
- An Update on IFLP (Jan. 6, 2019)
- Dropping the Rock: Three Examples (Sept. 1, 2019)
- IFLP Data Download (Sept. 29, 2019)
- Toward Evidence-Based Legal Education Reform: First, Let’s Experiment (Oct. 13, 2019)
- The Delta Model: Simple, Accurate, Versatile (Nov. 10, 2019)