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GLASS HOUSES? - In-house legal department leaders have been among the most vocal advocates for diversity in the legal profession, in some instances aggressively pushing their outside counsel to make improvements in that regard. But how many law department leaders have been applying that level of scrutiny and accountability to their own diversity efforts? According to a new survey, not nearly as many as one might hope. As Law.com’s Hugo Guzman reports, the study, by Major, Lindsey & Africa and the Association of Corporate Counsel, found that only 29% of legal departments surveyed track internal diversity. Of those doing so, just under half have plans to improve diversity in their departments. Greg Richter, vice president for Retained Search and Advisory Services at Major Lindsey, said he had expected those numbers to be far higher. “Especially given the client space and conversations we’re having, I would think the vast majority of companies and law departments have a plan to increase diversity,” Richter said. “That’s the beauty of the anonymized data. People will be honest, and give you the hard truth.” Richter did note, however, that diversity comes up more often than such statistics would indicate when Major Lindsey is called upon to assist and advise with new hiring.
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