With the reckoning on systemic racism that our country has experienced in the last year, there has been a renewed focus on diversity in the legal industry. This has long been a persistent challenge in our profession. To ensure this latest push for diversity is more successful than past efforts, it is crucial for law firms and legal departments to acknowledge and avoid past mistakes. When it comes to diversity and inclusion strategy, these are five common mistakes that are made and that continue to be obstacles to achieving true diversity and inclusion in the legal profession.

1. Failure to Recognize the Power of Why

The first mistake is the failure to recognize the power of why. D&I initiatives often begin enthusiastically and are undertaken with the best of intentions. However, before a firm or legal department begins to hire diverse talent, they should ask a powerful, yet simple, question. Why? Specifically, why is diversity and inclusion important to your company? Your why is going to impact your how.