July 5, 2017
For the longest time, the legal profession seemed immune to change — particularly in Asia. But the long overdue modernisation of the industry is now proceeding apace, creating a host of challenges and opportunities that are shaping the future of legal services. In recognition of the rapidly evolving landscape, In-House Community hosted its inaugural Legal Inno’Tech Forum in association with Axiom in June. The event, which was also co-hosted by Blackberry and Navigant, brought together legal decision-makers and innovators to discuss these disruptive changes and share ideas on how to avoid being left behind. Kirsty Dougan, head of Asia at Axiom, knows a thing or two about that. Welcoming the attendees, she shared her experience of pioneering a new, disruptive legal services model in Asia in 2010 — when she was told repeatedly that Asia wasn’t ready and that Axiom’s model couldn’t work. Such attitudes were not surprising from an industry that had not changed much in more than a century. Today, preservation is all about innovation. The forum’s opening speaker, Mitch Kowalski, a Fastcase 50 Global Legal Innovator and author of Avoiding Extinction: Reimagining Legal Services for the 21st Century, explained that tomorrow’s leading legal service providers will be those that take an enterprise approach to legal services — those who see law as a team sport. “The current legal services delivery model is at the end of its natural lifecycle,” said Kowalski. “And the only people who don’t know it are members of the legal profession.” That observation paved the way for the second session, which comprised a selection of the few legal professionals in Asia who...
June 1, 2017
Dentons, already the world's largest law firm, has expanded its Southeast Asia presence with the addition of a new office in Yangon ...
May 24, 2017
By Patrick Dransfield One of the biggest challenges facing teams of lawyers was identified more than 50 years ago by Chris Argyris: “Smart people don’t learn…because they have too much invested in proving what they know and avoiding being seen as not knowing.” Recently in Hong Kong, 20 general counsel from top local and multinational companies took part in the In-House Community’s first Bohm Dialogue, co-hosted by Axiom and the Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre. Bill Proudfit, our facilitator, has over 30 years in knowledge management and first broke down the natural comfort zone of our assembled delegates by instigating a “knowledge cafe” where individuals were formed into pre-determined small groups that broke down commonalities based on gender and geography. The groups then changed multiple times as the individuals were encouraged to listen and to share: ‘‘What are the achievable changes I can expect to make in my department or in my company in the next 12 months?” The net result of the knowledge cafe was that everyone in the room knew each other and had shared their thoughts with everyone else in an intimate setting. Bill then guided the assembled through the Bohm Dialogue stage: participants were seated in a circle and encouraged to listen intently. As determined by the rules of the dialogue outlined by David Bohm, only one person can speak at any time and that person holds an object as the “speaking object”. Bill shared with the assembled at the close that “knowledge can only be volunteered; it cannot be conscripted”. The Bohm Dialogue channels very old emotional intelligence, based on listening and speaking without...