When The Careerist’s Vivia Chen highlighted a study in one of her columns that found male clients are more inclined to steer business to male partners, as opposed to female partners, it caught the attention—in a big way—of Robbie Kaplan and Sharon Nelles.

In this episode, Kaplan, a former Paul Weiss litigation partner and founder of law firm Kaplan & Company, and Nelles, a litigation partner at Sullivan & Cromwell, talk about the “why” of the situation, how they’ve confronted those obstacles, and what both men and women can do to improve business development.

Chen’s interview with Kaplan and Nelles is the first in an occasional series focused on the struggles and successes of women and minority lawyers. Over the next few months, she’ll talk to women lawyers about their challenges working in Big Law and beyond. She’ll cover topics such as diversity quotas, business origination and appearance bias. Stay tuned!

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