Agile is a methodology which seeks to break work down into smaller pieces to be delivered iteratively, the premise being that establishing a flow of work will release value to clients faster. I have recently come across the term ‘Law-gile’ in a couple of conversations. Law-gile, it follows, is the application of Agile practices to the delivery of law and legal services.
At this year’s Legal Geek conference, I enjoyed Nikki Shaver’s brilliantly witty commentary on ‘Turning Your Law Firm Agile’. The session focused on the legal profession’s penchant to put ‘legal’ in front of everything: legal tech, legal project management, legal operations, legal spend management. Her well-made point was that, by making everything specialised or niche, the legal profession is not shedding its image of being inaccessible and may not be attracting the best talent in these areas. I have shamelessly titled this article ‘Law-gile’ to catch your attention. However, with Nikki’s talk ringing in my ears, I am going to talk about Agile methodology and how it can benefit legal teams. No further references to Law-gile from here on out!
I like the word agility. For me its connotations are flexibility, speed, efficiency, and the ability to be nimble and change direction.