Tap to select a day

STAGES

Fri 17 May
- 11:00

COFFEE BREAK

Fri 17 May
- 13:15

LUNCH

Fri 17 May
- 15:45

COFFEE BREAK

Fri 17 May
- 17:30

NETWORKING DRINKS

Fri 17 May
- 09:00

MAIN PLENARY

Opening Remarks and Chairperson Introduction

Kizzy Augustin

Partner @ Russell-Cooke Solicitors

Fri 17 May
- 09:15

MAIN PLENARY

Panel: A War On Attrition

According to the Solicitors' Regulation Authority (SRA), in 2017 in the UK, women represented 66.6% of new admissions to the roll, and yet, in the same year, just 33% of partners were women. This decreases to 29% at the largest firms. The statistics for other protected characteristics are just as stark: just 21% of lawyers were Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) in the same year; 3% identified as LGB; 2% were trans; and 2% of lawyers at the largest firms were disabled.

What is happening to prevent all of these talented people from pursuing a career in law? How can lateral recruitment be improved to ensure that it isn't exacerbating the issue? What is preventing so many women in the profession from reaching the pinnacle of their careers? And what can be done about it?

In this session, a group of experts will set out the challenge that this conference is seeking to address, and offer solutions and ideas for how to ensure that progress is made in all aspects of diversity in law. These statistics are a damning indictment of the state of the industry and must be remedied; are you ready to change the rules?

 

Fri 17 May
- 09:45

MAIN PLENARY

Presentation: What is the problem we're actually trying to solve? And How Will We Get There?

Jenifer Swallow

General counsel @ TransferWise

In this session, Jenifer will evaluate the problems outlined in the opening address, and set out a plan for how we can solve them. This session well help you to think about how you tailor your content throughout the day to meet both your personal and company objectives.

 

Fri 17 May
- 10:00

MAIN PLENARY

Keynote speech: How I Got Here

Gina Miller

Founder @ SCMDirect and the True and Fair Foundation

In this opening session, our keynote speaker will open up about their professional story, and the trials and tribulations they have experienced along the way. This session will set the tone for a day of challenging, provocative and, ultimately, solutions-focused conversation, by highlighting the power of the individual in bringing about real, meaningful change within their own industry.

 

Fri 17 May
- 10:30

MAIN PLENARY

Panel: All for One

In order to stamp out inequality, those with the power to change things must stand up and become advocates for the cause. In the case of gender disparity in the legal sector, it is not enough for the direct beneficiaries of the mission (women in this case) to be its sole supporters. No, for progress to flourish, everyone—regardless of their own personal interest—must gather behind the goal.

In this session, a panel of male advocates proactively fighting for progress on gender equality in the legal sector will explain what diversity means to them, and why they have dedicated their energy to challenging the status quo.

 

Fri 17 May
- 11:30

MAIN PLENARY

The Future of Law

How will a push towards automation impact efforts to diversify the workforce? This panel will bring together leaders of law practices to look at how new technologies will effect business practices over the coming years, and what challenges these could pose for attempts to reach a more equal footing for women working in law.

 

Fri 17 May
- 12:00

MAIN PLENARY

Interview series: Intersectionality and the Law

Katherine Ramo

Associate @ CMS

Stephanie Dominy

Commercial Lawyer, member of The Legal Pod and founder @ Dominy Legal

Yasmin Sheikh

Founder @ Diverse Matters

Clare Fielding

In this series of one-on-one interviews, we will hear from people who have experience navigating different aspects of intersectionality at work in the legal industry. What is the multiplier effect in terms of professional disadvantage when we consider other protected characteristics, such as disability, race and sexuality? This session will provide an essential grounding to the day's discussions. What are the benefits of a truly diverse workforce? How can companies do more both to protect their employees from discrimination and to allow them to flourish professionally without compromising their authenticity? And what important lessons can we learn from individuals who have direct experience dealing with these issues?

 

Fri 17 May
- 12:55

MAIN PLENARY

How to Turn Words into Actions

Tracey Dovaston

MD, Head of Litigation Investigations & Regulatory Enforcement EME @ Barclays

Talk is cheap, especially when it comes to making progress on diversity metrics. So how do you turn good intentions into good results? What is the secret to effective implementation of new business strategy? And what are some practical steps to take to make sure that your words become actions with the potential to bring about positive change?

 

Fri 17 May
- 14:15

MAIN PLENARY

Panel: Building the Career You Want

Melanie Carter

Head of the Public & Regulatory Law Department @ Bates Wells Braithwaite

Mary Bonsor

Co-Founder @ F-lex

Annabel Dumbell

Managing Director, Litigation and Dispute Management @ Accenture Legal Group

Long gone are the days when you qualify, start a job and stay there happily until retirement. Not only are the expectations of employees changing in terms of how they see their careers evolving, but, in a context of frequent disruption by new technology, it is no longer realistic to believe that you won't have to change course at some point, and many of us will be working well into our older years. So how should we be thinking about our careers in the legal profession? How have others demonstrated that agility and flexibility are the keys to success? And what can be learned from their experiences?

 

Fri 17 May
- 14:45

MAIN PLENARY

Presentation: One Hundred Years of Women in Law

The First 100 Years is a ground-breaking history project, supported by the Law Society, Bar Council and CILEx, charting the journey of women in law since 1919. The project is powered by Spark21, a charity founded to celebrate, inform and inspire future generation of women in the profession. In this session, the project's director, Dana Denis-Smith will discuss the initiative, its objectives and what this milestone means for greater efforts towards diversity in the legal sector.

 

Fri 17 May
- 15:15

MAIN PLENARY

Pride and Prejudice – Why Women Need to be at the Heart of Law

Dame Justine Thornton DBE

High Court Judge @ Queen's Bench Division (QBD)

Fri 17 May
- 16:15

MAIN PLENARY

Presentation series: POWER HOUR

Grace Ononiwu OBE

Chief Crown Prosecutor for the West Midlands @ Crown Prosecution Service

Philippa Hann

Equity Partner @ Clarke Willmott

Dr Charlotte Proudman

Barrister @ Goldsmiths Chambers

Three inspirational women will one by one take to the stage to impart one piece of wisdom they've learned from their career, and why this lesson has propelled them forward.

 

Fri 17 May
- 17:15

MAIN PLENARY

Closing remarks and Call for Action

To close the day, we will invite delegates to share their commitments to lead change in their own networks over the next year. What have you learned today? How will you ensure that you are a proactive change-maker? And what do you want to see more of next year?

 

Fri 17 May
- 10:30

STREAM I: Starting Out

Presentation: Finding Your Tribe

Alisa Grafton

Partner @ Cheesewrights

For anyone beginning a career in any industry, establishing an effective and supportive network is often the most pressing, and challenging, aspect to confront. This is especially so if you are a woman working in law, where senior female role models and mentors are in shorter supply. But how do you actually go about this? What are the tried and tested methods for cross-industry networking? And, once contact is established, how and when should you seek the advice of others? In this session, we'll explore not only the importance of having a healthy support network, but also practical steps that you can take to ensure that you are networking in an effective way.

 

Fri 17 May
- 11:30

STREAM I: Starting Out

Presentation: Getting the Most from your Mentor

In this presentation we'll hear from a mentor and their mentee on how they successfully established and built a fruitful relationship, and any tips they have picked up along the way. You will leave the session confident about how to make the most out of the time you spend with your mentor, and ready to maximise this important relationship.

 

Fri 17 May
- 12:05

STREAM I: Starting Out

Presentation: Beyond the Obvious: Understanding Your Options and Capitalising on Varied Work Experience

Daniela Rada

Legal Contracts Manager @ Fitch Learning

We’ve all seen it. That straightforward legal career path: 3 years law degree, 1 year LPC, 2 years training, qualification and then the marathon to partnership. But one size does not fit all. Whether you are an aspiring lawyer or an NQ looking for the next challenge, this session will help you to evaluate and use your work experience to shape your path to success.

Key presentation takeaways:

  • Embrace the diversity of your background and use it to your advantage.
  • Keep an open mind, know your options and experiment.
  • Focus on your goal. There is always a way!

 

Fri 17 May
- 12:40

STREAM I: Starting Out

Starting Strong: Wellbeing for Junior Lawyers

Eloise Skinner

Solicitor @ Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP.

Succeeding at work is one thing, but it often comes at the cost of personal wellbeing. Packed with practical tips and guidance, this session will cover the big questions facing junior lawyers. Is it possible to navigate a work-life balance in today’s workplaces? How can junior lawyers build a sustainable, long-term career in the legal profession? And how can finding meaning and purpose as you start out as a junior lawyer have a positive impact on your future career?

 

Fri 17 May
- 14:15

STREAM I: Starting Out

How to Stand Out From the Crowd

Felicia Gerdin

Contracts & Business Operations Manager @ The Economist Group

Anyone who has ever worked in the legal sector knows that intelligence and success are not in short supply here. But with such an oversupply of talented and impressive people flowing into this sector each and every year, how do you ensure that you still catch the attention of influential people? How do you identify skills and competencies that will give you the edge when it comes to recruitment? And then how do you make sure that you remain top of the pile?

 

Fri 17 May
- 14:45

STREAM I: Starting Out

How To Babyproof Your Career

Caroline Flanagan

Coach and Founder @ Baby Proof Your Life

In the words of Benjamin Franklin, "Fail to prepare, prepare to fail”. Here lies a powerful message for all who aspire to having the career and the family: Don't leave the biggest and most rewarding challenge of your life to chance. Prepare for it.

If you are a career woman that knows you want a family in the future, a regular career plan just won’t cut it. What you need is a long-term strategy that anticipates the emotional and practical challenges you’ll face when the time comes. That strategy is to babyproof your career; anticipate the challenges working parents face and master the career tools and life skills you’ll need to make it work. If you truly want a shot at having it all, now is the time to act.

 

Fri 17 May
- 15:15

STREAM I: Starting Out

How to Talk to Senior Leadership About Diversity

In a healthy organisation, the flow of new ideas comes from both the top down and the bottom up. With every new entrant to an organisation comes the potential for a new idea to revolutionise the way that the company addresses a certain issue. But challenging entrenched hierarchies can often be tough. In this session, we will hear how to broach the subject of diversity with those with the power to effect change, and how to ensure that your message is heard.

 

Fri 17 May
- 16:15

STREAM I: Starting Out

Striking the Balance

Sally Penni

Law is one of the toughest sectors for achieving a healthy work/life balance, particularly in the first few years. This session will be about sharing hints and tips for how to get on top of your workload without compromising on your precious personal time, and give you reason to be optimistic about the future of your career!

 

Fri 17 May
- 10:30

STREAM II: Well on Your Way

Presentation: You're Not Lucky, You're Brilliant: Overcoming Imposter Syndrome and the Luck Myth

Georgina Wolfe

Barrister @ 5 Essex Court

No matter how senior we are, almost all of us will experience Imposter Syndrome in our careers. Georgina will look into the research of what causes the syndrome to unlock practical solutions to overcome it – with some words of wisdom from high-profile sufferers such as Michelle Obama, Mishal Husain and Lady Hale. Georgina will also examine our own tendency to attribute success to luck to look at why the luck myth betrays the next generation. You are not lucky: you’re brilliant!

 

Fri 17 May
- 11:30

STREAM II: Well on Your Way

Eyes On the Prize: Staying Focused on Your Objectives

Susie Ramroop

Mindset Coach @ Make Life Simple

Success in the legal profession is a long game. It takes years to qualify and even longer to earn your stripes to ascend to partnership. It is unsurprising, then, that your motivation, energy and general enthusiasm can wane during those years in between. This session will give you hints and tips for weathering those mid-career years and retaining your drive and momentum to succeed.

 

Fri 17 May
- 12:05

STREAM II: Well on Your Way

Group Think: The Retention Challenge

Thekla Fallas

Selina S Sagayam

Head of Transactional Practice Development @ Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher

The effluence of women from the Law between admission to the Bar and partnership level suggests that something is going horribly wrong in those crucial middle years. We know that women make good lawyers, that law is a profession in which the accumulation of experience improves your judgement and, ultimately, your ability to deliver in your role. And yet, something is happening to deter a large percentage of women from sticking with this vocation and reaching for those senior positions.

If we want to find a solution, we must first listen to the problems driving these decisions. In this session, a chair will lead a "group think" in which audience members will be invited to talk anonymously about the problems and issues that are facing them at this critical juncture in their career. We will compile the responses into a set of recommendations, which will be delivered to a group of senior law professionals later in the day to consider as they discuss the talent retention problem of women working in Law. We will also publish the results of this on our blog as a set of recommendations, to be considered by those who wish to address the attrition problem within their organisations after the event.

 

Fri 17 May
- 14:15

STREAM II: Well on Your Way

How to Get Ahead Without Playing Golf

Claire Larbey

General Counsel @ Trowers & Hamlins

We've all heard the stories of junior male associates being invited along for a golf weekend with the senior partners and coming back thick as thieves. But what if you don't like golf and, crucially, still want to build relationship with the people that count. In this session, we'll hear strategic networking tips from someone who has had great success in navigating their way to the top, without having to make it to the eighteenth hole.

 

Fri 17 May
- 14:45

STREAM II: Well on Your Way

Panel Q & A: Dealing with Challenging Situations

Catherine Brown

Founder @ Skilful Conversation

Mansplaining. Condescension. Comments about your physical appearance. Comments about your plans to have a family. Questions about your appointment to a case. Challenges from more junior members of staff. Frequently being interrupted. Someone making a point you've already made. Someone taking credit for your work. Aggression. Sexual harrassment. Challenges to your leadership.

The list goes on...

How do you deal with these awkward situations at work? Ask a panel of experienced and successful women under Chatham House Rules for their advice dealing with challenges that threaten to throw you off course, and how to come back fighting.

 

Fri 17 May
- 16:15

STREAM II: Well on Your Way

Presentation: The Non-Fatal Break: Taking Time Off and How To Come Back

Rachael Williams

Ombudsman @ Financial Ombudsman Service

Despite having qualified almost thirty years ago, Rachael Williams has noticed that one aspect of employees' experience that has changed very little is the issue of taking a career break to raise a family. This is especially true for women, who often struggle with confidence or doubt themselves upon re-entering such a high-octane profession after having taken a career break. In this session, Rachael, one of the Back to Law Ambassadors for the Law Society's Recharger programme, will, using a combination of personal and collected experience, provide much reason for optimism for those who are wondering how to balance this complicated task without having to compromise on success in their career.

 

Fri 17 May
- 10:30

STREAM III: A View From the Top

Leading Change

Mamta Gera

CEO @ The New Leadership UK

We often talk about effective leadership and what this means to a business. But how does this translate into spearheading diversity and inclusion (D and I) practices in your organisation? How can you be an agent of change at your firm? How important is it to have visible executive sponsors on D and I boards? What are the tried and tested techniques to ensure that as leaders, you're in tune with the demands and needs of your workforce? And why does this matter? This session will explore how to lead progress from the top down, and how the simple gesture of being a visible advocate can make a world of difference to efforts towards equality in the workplace.

 

Fri 17 May
- 11:30

STREAM III: A View From the Top

Becoming a Menopause-Friendly Company

Lauren Chiren

Founder @ Women of a Certain Stage

We need to talk about the menopause. More women are entering (and staying) in the workplace than ever before as the working age continues to rise. As it stands, more than 70% of menopausal women are in the workforce, and women over 50 are the fastest-growing group of workers in the UK. And yet, menopause and its impact is still widely considered an issue relegated to one-on-one conversations between employees and their managers. We know that it is an challenge that will face a large percentage of the workforce over the coming years, and we know that this has the potential to have a negative impact on company performance both on a personal and a wider team level. So why don't we talk about it more? In this session, Lauren Chiren will share personal experiences and explain best practice for dealing with this issue in your organisation, to the benefit of your staff and, therefore, those all important end-of-year results.

 

Fri 17 May
- 12:05

STREAM III: A View From the Top

What Does Effective Management Look Like?

We all know what bad management looks like. At some point in our careers, we've either seen or experienced micromanagement, bullying, a resistance to change and overly rigid hierarchies that inhibit the freeflow of ideas. No one sets out to be an ineffective manager, but being the sort of leader that gets the most out of your team is a choice, and it takes work. This session will focus on how to foster an effective management style, while giving you the lessons and advice you need to succeed in your role as a leader.

 

Fri 17 May
- 12:40

STREAM III: A View From the Top

The Career Progression Report: Updates for 2018

Hosted by InterLaw Diversity Forum

 

Fri 17 May
- 14:15

STREAM III: A View From the Top

How to Be a Good Mentor

In this exclusive preview session, led by the InterLaw Diversity Forum, results will be shared from the updated Career Progression in the Legal Sector report, which was first published in 2010. The goal of the report was to identify the barriers facing these diverse groups and to provide recommendations to address and ultimately solve these issues. The report told us that lawyers from protected classes under the Equalities Act and from disadvantaged backgrounds were working harder and earning less than their straight, white, elite-educated male counterparts. In fact, the more “boxes” they ticked (i.e. intersectionality/multiple identities) with regards to diversity and social mobility, the more pronounced this disadvantage became. We recommended in this report that law firms needed to change their cultures to become more meritocratic by: (i) adopting targets; (ii) changing culture; (iii) training their leaders; and (iv) addressing social mobility.

 

Fri 17 May
- 14:45

STREAM III: A View From the Top

The Talent Retention Problem: Looking for Solutions

Thekla Fellas

Selina S Sagayam

Head of Transactional Practice Development @ Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher

In this session, the chair of our Group Think on the mid-level track earlier in the day will deliver the results of the conversation to those with the power to change things. What can be done on a senior-leadership level to listen to these concerns and address them? If we recognise the problems, we can begin to find solutions, ensuring that we don't lose valuable talent through a failure to listen.

 

Fri 17 May
- 16:15

STREAM III: A View From the Top

"Don't Pull the Ladder Up Behind You" and Other Tips to Help the Next Generation

Caroline Colliston

Partner, Corporate Tax and Member of the Diversity Steering Group @ DWF LLP

This session will round off the senior leadership track by looking at the ways in which we, as managers, can ensure that we're holding the door open behind us to support the younger generation.

 

Fri 17 May
- 11:30

WORKSHOP I: Fostering an Inclusive Workplace

Future Leaders

Some people are born leaders, and some are not. And yet, being an effective leader is often the thing that catapults people towards the senior positions within their chosen career. So how do you teach people leadership? What are the innate qualities that make people good leaders? And how do you ensure that these skills are being nurtured in people from the very beginning of their career? This session will explore ways in which to manage talent development, and how you can help to instill important habits in your employees that will propel them to a future in leadership, should they want to pursue it.

 

Fri 17 May
- 12:05

WORKSHOP I: Fostering an Inclusive Workplace

How to Talk About Gender in 2019

Supported by Pink News

 

Fri 17 May
- 12:40

WORKSHOP I: Fostering an Inclusive Workplace

The Human Touch: How to Future-Proof Your Workforce

Digital transformation continues to modify the way that we communicate with one another, forcing businesses in each and every sector to adjust their strategies and procedures to keep pace. In the legal sector this is especially true, where automation has already replaced a number of jobs that were once occupied by humans, increasing efficiency and lowering costs.

But can artifical intelligence really replicate the level of empathy required to be a successful lawyer; a business that essentially navigates complex (and often emotional) human interactions? This session will focus on the essential qualities that separate humans from machines: empathy; judgement; courage; and trust. How can these be leveraged to the benefit of your employees, and, as a result, your year-end results? How can applying basic human psychology to team development translate into efficiency gains for companies trying to remain competitive? And, on a personal level, how can we hone and apply those skills to ensure that we are adding real value to our organisations?

 

Fri 17 May
- 14:15

WORKSHOP I: Fostering an Inclusive Workplace

Your Financial Wellbeing; the Moments that Matter

This session will look at the key stages in your life and your career that can have an impact on your overall financial well-being. The session will provide you with financial food for thought and aims to arm you with a list of questions and points to consider when you first (or next!) meet with a financial adviser. From financial independence to insurance and pensions considerations, this session aims to provide you with a little time to focus on and consider your financial wellbeing.

 

Fri 17 May
- 15:15

WORKSHOP I: Fostering an Inclusive Workplace

Sexual Harrassment at Work: How to Report it and Knowing Your Rights

Elisabeth Sullivan

As awareness of sexual harrassment in the workplace continues to increase in the wake of #MeToo, stories still abound of women experiencing sexual abuse at work and failing to report it for fear of professional consequences. This session will act as a guide for anyone looking to understand their rights, and how to help anyone facing the difficulty of sexual harrassment at work.

 

Fri 17 May
- 11:30

WORKSHOP II: The Skills to Succeed

The Six Key Traits of Emotional Intelligence and their Role in your Success

Chris Pether

Founder @ PeopleSmart

The six key traits of emotional intelligence and their role in your success


More and more people are recognising the value that Emotional Intelligence (EI) plays in business. Optimising your EI skillset is essential for anyone wanting to succeed in business, as well as in their personal and social life.


This fun, participatory and practical workshop will introduce you to the six important traits of EI, and how they can be used to your professional and personal advantage.


You will see how varying levels of EI play out in your day-to-day interactions in a law firm, in your own practice and in the wider world. Using real-life examples and exercises, you will leave the session with clarity around the benefits of optimising these skills at work, and guidelines about how to implement them in your professional (and personal) life.

 

Fri 17 May
- 11:30

WORKSHOP II: The Skills to Succeed

Mental Health: Prevention is Better Than Cure

Culturally, we are starting to embrace mental health and its impact on employees as part of "the norm" when it comes to managerial strategy and talent retention. But what can you, as an individual, do to promote a healthier, safer work environment that enables people of all walks of life to flourish and deliver their best possible outcomes? What are the key tenets of a mentally healthy workplace? And how do you convince those with the power to change things that this is an important cause to get behind?

 

Fri 17 May
- 12:05

WORKSHOP II: The Skills to Succeed

Top 1% Secrets of Time Management

Nis Arend

Founder @ The Top 1% Club

Introducing a refreshing taster session on time management: one of the most crucial topics in business today. To achieve all your goals and become everything you are capable of becoming in life and in business, you must master the management of your time. Research has shown that a sense of control is key to feelings of happiness, confidence and wellbeing, which is only possible when you practice excellent time management skills. Join this session to discover the golden nuggets that have helped the top 1% at the top of their game. This session is guaranteed to be different to any time management training you have previously attended.

 

Fri 17 May
- 12:40

WORKSHOP II: The Skills to Succeed

She Believed That She Could So She Did: Confidence-Building and Being Your Own Cheerleader

"Whether you think you can, or you think you can't—you're right" - Henry Ford

Self belief is something that is often in short supply, but is the single biggest contributor to success. As women in the world, we're given many reasons to doubt ourselves, from being pitted against each other based on our physical appearance to having our intelligence routinely questioned by male counterparts. This can have a really wearing effect on our self confidence, which can soon turn into a chronic problem that is complicated to resolve. But don't worry, help is at hand! During this session, we'll hear from a psychologist who can give you ideas and strategies to help to keep your self esteem and confidence in check, enabling you to reach your true potential.

 

Fri 17 May
- 14:15

WORKSHOP II: The Skills to Succeed

Your Financial Wellbeing; the Moments that Matter

This session will look at the key stages in your life and your career that can have an impact on your overall financial well-being. The session will provide you with financial food for thought and aims to arm you with a list of questions and points to consider when you first (or next!) meet with a financial adviser. From financial independence to insurance and pensions considerations, this session aims to provide you with a little time to focus on and consider your financial wellbeing.

 

Fri 17 May
- 14:45

WORKSHOP II: The Skills to Succeed

How to Use Your Body Language and Voice to Create Influence and Visibility

Sylvia Cohen

Director @ Sylvia Cohen Communication

David Roylance

Voice & Presentation Coaching @ David Roylance

In this session, participants will work with communication coaches Sylvia and David on their presentation style and how they can communicate more effectively at work. Be prepared to be stripped back to basics, only to re-emerge stronger and more effective in the way you communicate!