What lawyer wouldn’t want to earn higher margins, inspire greater client loyalty, attract and retain the best talent, and gain a competitive edge? According to Dr. Heidi Gardner, a former McKinsey consultant and Harvard Business School professor, now lecturing at Harvard Law School, the key to all these benefits is what she calls “Smart Collaboration.” Based on over a decade of research, her new book, “Smart Collaboration,” reveals these significant tangible benefits for lawyers, their firms or companies, and their clients.
The caveat? Not all teamwork is “smart.” Says Gardner, “Lawyers need to execute it efficiently, recognize the investment period required to develop the skills, and … stick with it long enough until those rewards kick in — there is a lag period and too many people give up before the ROI turns positive.”
I had a chance to speak with Gardner in depth about her research. Here’s what I learned.