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Law Firm Management Workshop - Half Day Education Event
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The July Chapter Meeting will be a half-day of education consisting of a keynote speaker at 8:30am and two breakout sessions following. Breakfast included.

When: Wednesday, July 17, 2019
8:00 AM - 12:30 PM
Where: Twelve Hotel - Atlantic Station
361 17th St NW
Atlanta, Georgia  30363
United States
Contact: Jennifer Brinkley
(888) 533-9937

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AALA Educational Half Day - Law Firm Management Workshop 

Agenda at a Glance

8:00 – 8:30AM:

Registration & Breakfast

8:30 – 10:00AM Keynote:

What Now?  What’s Next?  Trends in the Legal Market; Implications for Law Firms,

Alan Olson, Altman Weil

10:15 – 11:15AM

1. Identifying and Responding to Workplace Impairment,

Ryan West, Equalifyed

2. Law Firm Succession Planning:  What Law Firm Managers Need to Know,

Alan Olson, Altman Weil

11:30AM – 12:30PM:

1. The Non-Verbal Effect – Applications of Body Language in the Workplace,

Ryan West, Equalifyed

2. Solving Remote Workplace Challenges,

Sul Ah Kim – Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete LLP

*Lunch will not be served.


Session Information

Keynote: What Now? What’s Next? Trends in the Legal Market; Implications for Law Firms

presented by Alan Olson, Altman Weil

The legal services market has been undergoing nothing less than a revolution, sustained over the last three decades.  This revolution has included: consolidation, mergers and the growth to “mega-size” of some law firms;  other firms experiencing more cautious growth and success;  still other firms that have been static, have dwindled and gone out of business, or have rebounded, by merging, or on their own.  In-house legal departments have charted differing paths:  toward growth in lieu of outside legal spending; toward continued emphasis on managing outside counsel and/or toward consolidation of outside counsel.  Virtual law firms are growing in number and size, while the majority of firms are still invested in “bricks and mortar.” Artificial Intelligence is becoming a huge topic on its own,  with incalculable potential connections to legal practice, and laden with emerging opportunities—and threats.  In this presentation, Altman Weil Principal Alan R. Olson will focus on the trends observed during more than three decades of law firm consulting, with emphasis on the most significant current trends, and where these trends appear to be going.  The presentation perspective will focus on the implications for law firms, in particular, for law firm leaders and professional managers.  In addition, the presentation will cover an array of potential responses/solutions, from incremental responses and strategies, to “thinking outside the box” strategies for law firms,  followed by Q and A.


Identifying and Responding to Workplace Impairment

presented by Ryan West, Equalifyed


This presentation enhances the practical application skills of supervisors and managers for identifying and responding to employee impairment.  Participants will learn about the “four rules” for responding to suspected employee impairment, what “reasonable suspicion” really means, the most commonly used drugs of abuse and their signs of impairment, adulteration of urine specimens, and common barriers that prevent managers from reporting suspected impairment even when they know they should.  The final portion of this presentation focuses on the employee confrontation, offering proven tips and techniques that boost supervisor competency and comfort levels when informing an employee they will be drug tested.  At the end of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Discuss the 4 rules for responding to suspected workplace impairment
  • Identify personal barriers that inhibit the reporting process
  • Discuss the most common drugs of abuse and their signs of impairment
  • Describe an effective, non-confrontational conversation with an employee suspected of impairment.


Law Firm Succession Planning:  What Law Firm Managers Need to Know

presented by Alan Olson, Altman Weil


As the unprecedentedly large generation of baby boomer lawyers are approaching, or have moved into, phasing down their legal careers and retiring, most U.S. law firms are facing significant challenges with succession planning in general, and transitions in particular.  Moreover, many law firms are avoiding these issues, which—as time marches on—usually makes planning and key transitions more difficult to address successfully.  In this presentation, Altman Weil Principal and succession planning thought leader Alan R. Olson will apply his more than 30 years of law firm consulting experience to the critical topic of succession planning in law firms, with focus on what law firm leaders and professional managers need to know.   The presentation will include the following, and an opportunity for Q and A:

  • Concise summary of why succession planning is critical for law firms in 2019
  • Challenges/issues that can hinder succession planning, delay or prevent getting started
  • How can a law firm gauge the magnitude of its succession planning needs, and potential problems?
  • How can a law firm get succession planning started, or re-started?
  • What should your succession planning include?
  • What are key compensation considerations?
  • How to implement a succession planning program
  • Keys to success and pitfalls to avoid


The Non-Verbal Effect – Applications of Body Language in the Workplace

presented by Ryan West, Equalifyed


It is well known that when an individual’s body language contrasts with their speech, the listener is hard-wired to trust their body language. All too often, communication conflict occurs not because individuals are ill-intentioned, but because their true message gets lost in translation. Body language is the foundation for effective communication, yet only a few individuals naturally harness its power. This presentation provides quick tips and techniques that attendees can immediately apply their own communication signals and more accurately “decode” the signals of others. The bottom-line results? Increased confidence and improved relationships.  At the end of this presentation, participants will be able to:


·       Describe the 5 channels of body language

·       Discuss the importance of “attitude” priming and “body language” priming

·       Identify guarded and disengaged body language displays

·       Demonstrate warm and competent body language displays


Solving Remote Workplace Challenges

presented by Sul Ah Kim, Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete LLP


Remote working, telecommuting, flexible working – thanks to the wonders of technology, we’re finding new ways to get the job done.  In fact, as many as 43% of Americans spend at least some time working remotely. Certainly, that percentage will only increase with time. As our workforce becomes more dispersed, law firms must reconcile numerous FLSA, ADA, privacy, safety and other compliance issues when managing remote employees.  In this session, participants will confront these issues and discuss specific solutions for this growing legal concern.



About Our Speakers:


Alan Olson

Altman Weil


Alan R. Olson is a principal of Altman Weil, Inc., serving clients from the firm's Midwest office in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. For over twenty-five years, he has advised law firms across the country on strategic planning and practice management.

Mr. Olson's broad experience with law firms also encompasses projects involving law firm compensation systems, law firm mergers, professional services marketing, organization effectiveness and implementation strategies. He is a thought-leader in the emerging discipline of succession planning for law firms, including leadership and management transitions, practice transitions, compensation systems and key client retention strategies.

Prior to joining Altman Weil, Mr. Olson was a practicing lawyer and held executive positions for two prominent corporations. As a national manager and corporate vice president, he was responsible for divisions and products that spanned at least twelve different industries.

Mr. Olson is a frequent lecturer at national and regional programs for groups such as the American Bar Association, Association of Legal Administrators and many other legal organizations. He has spoken at and facilitated numerous educational panels, seminars and law firm retreats. He has authored articles for legal publications including ABA Law Practice, Of Counsel, Law Firm Partnership and Benefits Report, among others.

He is an active member of the American Bar Association, including past-chair of the ABA Law Practice Management Section’s Curriculum and Training Committee. He is a member of the Wisconsin Bar and Beta Gamma Sigma.

Mr. Olson graduated with distinction from the University of Wisconsin in Madison. He received his Juris Doctor from the University of Wisconsin Law School and his M.B.A., with honors, from the University of Wisconsin in Milwaukee.



Ryan West
Owner and Executive Director


Ryan has spent the past twelve years applying his expertise of nonverbal communication and personality theories to the workplace, focusing on leadership development, team building, and customer service. Ryan firmly believes that Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is the highway upon which all top-performing teams operate; communication is the vehicle, and a positive attitude the fuel. Fortunately, anyone can increase their EQ through learning and practice, and there are many simple techniques that can boost one’s EQ immediately.

Ryan is certified to professionally practice the Myers-Briggs® Personality Inventory through Executive Strategies International, Inc., and maintains his Certified Forensic Interviewer® credential through the Center for Interviewing Standards and Assessment, specializing in body language interpretation. Ryan also continues work in the addictions field for Greenbriar Treatment Center, serving as the Manager of Corporate Trainings & Business Development. He received his bachelor’s degree in criminology with a double minor in sociology and economics, and his master’s degree in psychology with an industrial-organizational concentration.



Sul Ah Kim

Constangy, Brooks, Smith & Prophete LLP


Sul represents employers in a wide variety of labor and employment matters. Sul counsels and defends employers, especially Korea-based international companies, in actions brought under state common law and federal law, including Title VII, the ADA, ADEA, FLSA, FMLA and NLRA. Sul advises clients on a range of human resources issues, employment policies and practices, employment agreements and separation agreements. Sul enjoys public speaking and training managers and executives on labor and employment matters.



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