Freshfields introduces mentor scheme to increase women partners
23 July 2010
Ever keen to up its diversity points, Freshfields
has introduced a pilot mentoring scheme for senior female associates to try to swell its ranks of women partners. Or at least do some serious window dressing.
Six female senior associates from departments across the firm will take part in the pilot, as part of the snappily titled "Strategic Excellence Leadership Programme". It should be rolled out more widely if the scheme proves a success.
Billed as focussing on career development and how to be a role model and influencer - presumably not in the Kate Moss mould - the pilot will include two one day workshops and regular sessions with a senior partner mentor. Senior associates will also take part in monthly hour long coaching sessions with consultancy firm Aspire, which specialises in women's development, according to the Lawyer
||Some window dressing yesterday
Currently only 12.5% of Freshfields' global partnership is made up of women. To be fair, the firm is not alone in this - a Legal Week survey earlier this year revealed that the women make up an average of only 15% across the Magic Circle. And it's an issue the firms are taking seriously - in January RollOnFriday reported
on a new initiative at Allen & Overy
allowing all lawyers to work part time: partners could apply to take up to 52 extra days off a year. And Linklaters
also introduced a coaching scheme for all
staff members last year.
But whether twelve hours of
coaching a year will really help Freshfields address the gender imbalance remains to be seen.