Month: March 2017

More Tea, Vicar? Times Change But Technology Changes Faster. Ready?

“More tea, vicar? “Any moment now…” “Just a moment…” “Nearly there…” The sorts of things we say to fill the awkward silences. Law is going to get seriously funky over the coming years. A wild ride. It’s going to get awkward to just “get by”. If your technology portfolio isn’t ready – or your team isn’t ready to roll with technology – well, that’s like trying to watch a buffering movie. It’s, well, #awkward. There was a palpable chill around the legal industry as the dust settled on the news that a major bank has invested in legal technology...

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On #LegalLeadership: Nancy May Speaks Of “Hunting” Diversity

Nancy May, CEO of the BoardBench Companies, is a leading authority on Boardroom candidacy and governance. In this article, she invites us to take a look at how you can go about finding “diverse directors.” Keep in mind that, if you don’t know what you value, setting clear objectives and finding practical solutions will always make the process much harder.

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Customers First, Investors Last – What were they thinking? Board Expert Nancy May Speaks

What we believe is real, and will eventually be proven again as real to the Street, is that customers, and employees are the two key drivers of corporate success. When I say “again” I’m referring to Peter Drucker’s famous quote from decades ago: “the purpose of a business is to create and keep customers.” So many seem to have forgotten this, or have never even heard of it.

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CEO Perspective On #FearlessLaw: LegalSifter’s Kevin Miller Talks To High Performance Counsel

The infusion of natural language processing and machine learning into the legal profession will allow lawyers to serve more customers in the same hour than they ever thought possible. As the technology improves, so will the quality of legal services, while the cost and speed will drop. More customers – business and consumers – will have affordable access to legal support. Lawyers who build A.I.-enabled service products will benefit professionally and economically in ways they did not know were possible.

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“Show Me The Money” – Nancy May Discusses The Role Of Corporate Advisory Boards

Nancy May: CEO, BoardBench Companies Tell me, simply: What’s the purpose of being in business? We shopped this question around to board members and executives, and heard many different (sometimes long-winded) answers. “Maximize value for stakeholders ― Have a flexible business strategy/model to stay relevant ― Make and sell goods or services ― Get and keep customers ― Derive monetary and psychic satisfaction, and a host of other interesting opinions. However, if you put all their responses into a big pot, lit a fire under it (one I like to call scrutiny), skimmed off all the fat, political correctness,...

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Nancy May: Executive Compensation – Careful What You Wish For

One can sense change in the air as sentiments on CEO and executive compensation becomes an even bigger front-and-center issue during proxy season this year.  Global economic uncertainty certainly has not helped perceptions of some high-profile pay packages. Pay for performance?  “What performance?” many are asking these days, especially pension funds and other groups where average-wage workers predominant. In the US, the Dodd-Frank Act required boards to provide greater transparency, and by giving shareholders a nonbinding say-on-pay vote, offered boards a more precise touchstone as to what shareholders are thinking.  Prior to this year, smaller companies (with a public float...

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It’s Monday Morning (On Saturday Night) Again. Who Owns Your Future?

It’s that Monday morning feeling that starts on Saturday night for a lot of lawyers I’ve spoken to. It doesn’t have the decency to wait until Sunday night any more. The angst about the new week starts on Saturday. There’s a reason. Law used to be a “safe option” – that is, law was the kind of degree you took and becoming a lawyer was the career you selected because it was a job for life. Law had a reputation for producing a great income and paying back student loans was never a great issue. Rather rapidly, I suggest that view...

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A Moment For Generational Leadership In The Legal Industry

“A true leader has the confidence to stand alone, the courage to make tough decisions, and the compassion to listen to the needs of others. He does not set out to be a leader, but becomes one by the equality of his actions and the integrity of his intent.” [Douglas MacArthur] I’m often asked if the sons and daughters of family and friends should pursue a career in law these days. It’s not an easy answer. In part, it depends on what we, the current incumbents and custodians of this sector, do with the opportunity for change that is...

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Nancy May: Directorship – Handling the Risks in Serving

I continue to smile at the unbridled enthusiasm of professionals who jump to say “Yes, I want to do that” when engaged in a conversation about board service.  It’s actually quite encouraging, considering the personal, professional, financial, and reputational liabilities these people may have to put on the line. Although the topic has been bantered around by current and prospective directors, there is a certain lack of depth in discussions about the exposures from joining a board that I find simply fascinating. Some directors have told me that, with the combination of the law of averages, consistently favorable Delaware Chancery...

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