Lindsay Llewellyn, associate general counsel at Lyft, has built the litigation team that has successfully enforced its class action waiver and arbitration agreement in multiple cases and negotiated the settlement of a class action in California that alleged Lyft misclassifies drivers as independent contractors.
Who’s the best leader you’ve seen in action and why?
Over the past two weeks, I’ve been fortunate to have had the opportunity to spend time with Sen. Kamala Harris and former senior adviser to President Barack Obama (and current Lyft board member) Valerie Jarrett. Both of these accomplished women are amazing leaders, and spending even a short time with both of them has inspired me to work harder, be better, and do more with the opportunities I’m presented with. I love that both women embody both confidence and humility. They recognize the importance of listening more than talking, and appreciate that you can always learn something new from those around you.
After the events that have rocked Silicon Valley this year, are you more or less hopeful about the prospects for women in the tech industry?
I’m more hopeful about the prospects for women in the tech industry. It was incredibly heartening to see women speaking up about their experiences working in tech result in improved accountability across the industry, especially as consumers increasingly put their money where their beliefs are. It’s exciting to see women and customers incentivizing tech companies to maintain female-friendly cultures in this way.
Do lawyers bear any special responsibility in addressing gender stereotyping and discrimination in tech?
It’s incumbent on everyone who works in tech (not just us lawyers!) to detect both conscious and unconscious bias, speak up in the face of injustice, and proactively advocate for change as it relates to gender stereotyping and discrimination.
If I could change one thing about working in tech, it would be …
The perception that lawyers are “naysayers.” This is something I work to change every day at Lyft by collaborating with stakeholders across the organization to accomplish their goals.
The No. 1 issue that keeps me and my clients up at night is …
Scaling my team quickly enough to keep up with the pace of Lyft’s explosive growth and many legal concerns so that we can deliver best-in-class legal counsel to clients across the entire organization.
What piece of advice do you have for young lawyers in tech?
Young litigators in tech should become comfortable with the notion that the best way to do their jobs is to work themselves out of them by proactively working to avoid litigation. The best way to do so in the fast-paced tech industry is to always remain conscientious of even the most minute details and how they affect the “big picture.” In short, don’t be “above” anything, because the details can make all the difference.