My consulting projects rarely address the heterogeneity of law firm lawyers. Other people passionately, tirelessly, and creatively push for diversity. So, I will merely note here five steps new to me but probably commonly known to some readers.
Set your primary firms a goal of more hours worked by diverse attorneys as a percentage of total hours during the coming 12 months. Perhaps 10 percent would be a starting expectation. More aggressively, set goals by level of partner, associate and paralegal.
Consider a “diversity deduction” from fees of a firm that fails to improve its diversity showing. This would certainly put teeth in the message and could fund other efforts, including bonuses for successful firms.
Set up a program where diverse lawyers at your department “mentor” a minority lawyer at a law firm.
Favor secondments of minority lawyers to your law department.
Require firms to designate a Minority Emphasis Partner to push this initiative from the their side and report periodically on their firm’s efforts and results.