Recap: #LegalTechChat Twitter Chat with Lex Mundi's Gordon Vala-Webb
Following a successful Twitter chat with NetDocuments and Artificial Lawyer last month, Diligen's fifth #LegalTechChat Twitter Chat focused on Legal Innovation: "Is ‘legal innovation’ an oxymoron? Making the case for change". Our host of the chat, Senior Advisor for Lex Mundi Gordon Vala-Webb (@BuildSmarterOrg), led the discussion with legal professionals across the world.
Here's a snippet from our favourite responses. If you're interested in joining the next #LegalTechChat, follow us at @diligensoftware for updates.
Q1: Is it easier to innovate within a law firm network environment than if you are a firm on your own?
@LexMundi is a “high-touch” network with more of the best #lawyers (21,000+), in 100 countries, with 160 members. It is a “many flowers bloom” approach: smart people, in multiple markets, innovating & - crucially . . . #LegalTechChat— Gordon Vala-Webb (@BuildSmarterOrg) June 13, 2019
I think the most important thing is having a mindset that values innovation and is open to change. I suppose the likelihood of finding thought leaders that can inspire along those lines is more likely in a larger group - but it is not a prerequisite.— mbaltusavich (@mbaltusavich) June 13, 2019
I think answer depends on how closely firms in network work together and what the problem is they are jointly trying to solve. Then it comes down to resources + cooperation. And scale + multiple perspectives as pros vs. potentially high coordination cost as con. #LegalTechChat— ronfriedmann (@ronfriedmann) June 13, 2019
Q2: Everyone talks about being innovative – how can you tell if you really are?
First, all organizations are already at least a bit innovative (if only incrementally) #LegalTechChat— Gordon Vala-Webb (@BuildSmarterOrg) June 13, 2019
And there are lots and lots of “#innovation models” you could use to tell if you are (Google search gives 0.5 million results – 94,000 of which are pdfs https://t.co/i3ZmJZ5AGD #LegalTechChat— Gordon Vala-Webb (@BuildSmarterOrg) June 13, 2019
Innovation is relative to your market. Most things have been done by someone else somewhere. Doing something that most (80%?) of those around you haven't done is #innovative— Gordon Vala-Webb (@BuildSmarterOrg) June 13, 2019
You’ve had to iterate or pivot bc something didn’t quite work out. Aka: you’ve made a “mistake”. Without mistakes there can be no innovation.— Helgi Maki (@HelgiMaki) June 13, 2019
Q3: Are the biggest innovation barriers inside or outside of organizations?
The trick (1) is that there is a lot of “noise” and it can be hard to hear the “signal” (2) and, as Yogi Berra said, “It's tough to make predictions, especially about the future” #LegalTechChat— Gordon Vala-Webb (@BuildSmarterOrg) June 13, 2019
The only barriers are inside. The outside world (clients, competitors, new science / tech etc.) is trying to tell your organization something if you listen to it. #LegalTechChat— Gordon Vala-Webb (@BuildSmarterOrg) June 13, 2019
Agreed - the market will drive (or not) the change (absent the occasional brilliant, strategic, leader #legaltechchat— Gordon Vala-Webb (@BuildSmarterOrg) June 13, 2019
Biggest barriers are inside especially fear of perceived failure. What will people think? We need to ask instead what will people learn? Let’s value learning more than fear.— Helgi Maki (@HelgiMaki) June 13, 2019
Inside, hands down. It is very difficult to change the direction of a car when you are a passenger.— mbaltusavich (@mbaltusavich) June 13, 2019
Q4: What is the rate of change going to be over the next 2 to 3 years? Do we need transformation or is steady improvement ok?
We are about to hit an inflection point in the change curve; so, to be where the market will be, firms / departments need to do more. here are the signs I see: https://t.co/pWGoVw77z8 #LegalTechChat— Gordon Vala-Webb (@BuildSmarterOrg) June 13, 2019
Exponential change rarely looks exponential in the present, but it's happening whether we realize it or not. #LegalTechChat— Blue J Legal (@BlueJLegal) June 13, 2019
@ronfriedmann the good news is that steady improvement can result in real transformation. Just not instantly. #LegalTechChat— Laura van Wyngaarden (@lauravanwyn) June 13, 2019
Revolution v evolution? They are the same thing. first Industrial revolution took about 60 years. Innovation is just not standing still. #LegalTechChat— Crispin Passmore (@CrispinPassmore) June 13, 2019
Q5: Are there countries or regions where firms and legal departments are more innovative? Why the difference?
As has been mentioned - I did a recent post “The Geography of Legal Innovation: firms, people, tech” using three data sets: @DanLinna’s Innovation Index; @EricJYChin’s work with @StanfordLaw w ‘s Codex TechIndex; & @LinkedIn job title search https://t.co/JrvsIaCXF9 #LegalTechChat— Gordon Vala-Webb (@BuildSmarterOrg) June 13, 2019
A5: Besides Singapore, I really couldn't say as I've focused most of my efforts in the US, UK, Canada and some out of India. Basically, English-speaking countries. As such, I look forward to the commentary from others. #LegalTechChat— Nick Rishwain (@NickJRishwain) June 13, 2019
We need more data on this. I know @InnoJustice and others are doing great work outside of the UK & Australia. I would love to see more analysis on regional legal innovation #LegalTechChat— Julie Sobowale (@nslegal) June 13, 2019
Q6: Which firms are innovating? How? Tag them in your response.
Example: @BurnessPaullLLP (@LexMundi member firm Scotland) using @nalytics for big data https://t.co/1XQK2hqQzv #LegalTechChat— Gordon Vala-Webb (@BuildSmarterOrg) June 13, 2019
We have a lot of firms that have been innovating by moving their documents (and thus workflows) to the cloud in recent months! Our most recent customer is a #LATAM firm, Aguilar Castillo Love; and @GrayReedLaw was just implemented recently!— NetDocuments (@netdocuments) June 13, 2019
Our client roster, for starters. 😉 #LegalTechChat— Blue J Legal (@BlueJLegal) June 13, 2019
A great deal of the innovation I am familiar with comes from solos and small firms. #LegalTechChat— Nick Rishwain, JD (@expertsdotcomvp) June 13, 2019
@Thorntons_Law - use of data science in modelling outcomes and pricing in conjunction with @DataLabScotland perhaps? Or using @amiqus to remove lots of the pain of AML? I would also argue every #boring document automation and case man project is potent when adopted successfully— Sarah Blair (@SazBlair) June 13, 2019