Publication Date: March 09, 2015
Source: Harvard Business School北京快3
北京快3It was October 2013, and global law firm Clifford Chance was coming under fire for the second time in less than a year for reputedly failing to provide a supportive work environment for its female associates. A memo entitled "Speaking Effectively" was just issued to the U.S. offices of the firm and immediately sparked controversy, as some female associates claimed that the gender-specific advice in the memo was condescending and sexist. This controversy came close on the heels of a memo released in November 2012, in which a third-year associate gave her resignation and explained why she was leaving the firm by detailing her unsustainable schedule as both a corporate lawyer and a mother to young children. Both memos were leaked on the internet, prompting bloggers, media outlets, and the public to chime in with their own opinions as to whether the firm was sexist. How should Clifford Chance have responded to these allegations? Was the firm sexist, or were things being taken out of context and blown out of proportion? If the firm determined that it needed to take heed and create a more inclusive culture that better met the needs of its female associates, where should it begin? Finally, how were the lessons learned in this case applicable to corporate America in 2014, where only 5.2% of Fortune 500 CEOs and 16.9% of board members in the United States were women?