The work of creating inclusive workplaces in the legal industry doesn’t stop for a pandemic. In fact, according to Kutak Rock partners Winnie Hawkins and Stuart Hindmarsh, it’s even more critical now. The two recently authored an article titled “Creating Inclusive Legal Industry Workplaces in COVID-19,” which was published in Law Practice Today.
Ms. Hawkins and Mr. Hindmarch cite the definitions of diversity and inclusion as they’re presented in Dolly Chugh’s book, The Person You Mean to Be. They also provide several examples of common workplace issues, followed by possible solutions that can be implemented by different levels of leadership.
Their top tip for inclusiveness during COVID-19 is to “seek the pathways that have long needed adjustment and use the pandemic as the opportunity to revamp those pathways. If the workplace or a particular group has not been inclusive in its recruiting, hiring, evaluation, opportunity, promotion, compensation, succession, or voice,” they said, “use this time of disruption to introduce ideas that create inclusive pathways during COVID-19 and beyond.”
Ms. Hawkins is a partner in the firm’s tax credits group in Omaha. She is co-chair of Kutak Rock’s National Inclusiveness and Diversity Committee and the immediate past chair of the firm’s Professional Development Committee. Stuart Hindmarsh is a partner in the firm’s corporate group in Fayetteville. He also is co-chair of Kutak Rock’s National Inclusiveness and Diversity Committee.