Linklaters asks staff to cure work/life balance problems in 72hr 'jam'
16 October 2015
has asked its staff how it can improve work/life balance in a 72 hour online debate called "The Jam
Fee-earners and support staff were invited to participate in the online forum which ran, just like a real jam, from 5am on Tuesday until 5am this morning. Only instead of producing beautiful music and substance addictions, the firm hopes the debate will generate "good ideas and solutions
" to the fundamental question that has perplexed philosophers for centuries: how to be a successful lawyer and have a social life.
Partner Fiona Hobbs said that the firm was committed to implementing ideas even if they "completely turn things on their head
", so long as they are reasonable, practical and "affordable for our business
". Which, given that the partners expect to earn around £1.4 million, means almost nothing.
||"I suggest gold-plated helper robo-"
Linklaters set up the initiative after feedback from its staff. Like the other Magic Circle firms
, except Slaughter and May
, Linklaters scores absymally for work/life balance
in the RollOnFriday Firm of the Year survey every year. In 2015, associates' comments included, "You literally get flogged to death and you are expected to cancel absolutely anything and everything at a moment’s notice
", and "I'm pretty sure I will be walking down the aisle wearing a conference headset
". However, only staff with a deathwish will have been as forthcoming when dey been jammin' since the brainstorm was not anonymous.
Hobbs said that while some people may "sneer
" at the firm's attempt
to use crowdsourcing to address work/life balance issues, it was genuinely hoping to identify some fresh solutions. Although finishing at 6pm every day probably won't be one of them, given that even the firm's press
release emphasised that Linklaters operates in an "often challenging
" environment which "does not suit everybody