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ARTICLE

Planning Ahead

Preparing now for what’s next

COVID-19 has precipitated a torrent of disruption in all industries. In legal, we saw an accelerated shift to the digital practice of law — particularly in virtual disputes — and the growth of data-driven decisions and services. BLG is preparing now to be a trusted legal partner in the next normal. Our digital transformation program facilitated a swift transition for our teams to remote working, and we have begun modelling and planning for various scenarios of how our future may unfold.

The Plan Ahead Initiative

BLG is leveraging its strategic planning expertise to get ahead of the next wave of disruption and to ensure that we continue to provide exceptional client service in the next normal. With this objective in mind, the firm launched our innovative, multi-pronged Plan Ahead Initiative.

Step 1: Developing scenarios 

Our innovative approach began with open brainstorming sessions with our Innovation Thought Leadership Committee (ITLC). Led by partner Jason Howg, the sessions focused on the art of the plausible: what might the world look like in late 2021? It considered multiple dimensions, e.g., social-political, economic, and technological. To plan for an uncertain future and to push the boundaries of our thinking, the ITLC developed a set of discrete scenarios.

Step 2: Starting with empathy 

The next step in our approach was to conduct an empathy exercise to consider what clients would be thinking, feeling and doing in each scenario, and how BLG might best respond with practice and client innovation. The ITLC considered a range of innovative tools, including legal technology, new services and pricing.

Step 3: Developing strategic recommendations 

Using their insights and ideas as a jumping-off point, teams of professionals led by our Group Heads, debated and incorporated the ITLC’s recommendations, developed their own, and chose the strongest strategies to move forward in the process.

Step 4: Getting executive buy-in 

BLG’s national firm leadership came together in a strategic planning session to review the scenarios and the Group Heads’ recommendations. They also reviewed the insights and observations of John Godber, our Client Innovation Partner; key emerging trends around workforce and culture and service delivery; and digital transformation. Leadership was asked to answer a key question: what do we do now to set the firm and its clients up for success in each scenario? They also considered: which scenario should we be planning for?

A key feature of our Plan Ahead Initiative was that it involved various levels of firm leadership at each stage of the process. In total, the Plan Ahead Initiative engaged the insights of over 60 BLG members.

The outcome

The result of our Plan Ahead Initiative is a set of strategic priorities we will be implementing to position BLG for success in the next normal. We are confident that the results of our Plan Ahead Initiative will benefit clients as the legal industry emerges from this crisis.

BLG can help you engage in your own plan-ahead process. For this and other ways we can prepare your business for the next normal, please contact Lisa Chamandy, John Godber or Mary-Ann Stallings.

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