KM Legal, 2 (5), 2008

[Deutscher Titel: KM Legal, 2 (5), 2008 (Text übersetzen: Deutsch)]

KM Legal, Volume 2 Issue 5 2008

Editor’s letter
Kate Clifton


Training and development
As the professional support lawyer (PSL) role has matured and the number of PSLs has increased, more firms are considering or having to consider whether they need to put in place a PSL career development framework.

Case study: Nabarro
When Nabarro Nathanson last year became simply Nabarro and ‘Clarity Matters’ became its brand promise, at the same time, ‘knowledge anagement’ at the firm became simply ‘knowledge’. At a stroke Anna Marshall, the firm’s professional practice partner, managed to cut through the esoteric debate about how we can possibly manage knowledge and how we should clearly distinguish between knowledge and information. In the practical commercial world of the modern law firm, it doesn’t matter. “Knowledge” plain, simple, clear and uncluttered had arrived at Nabarro.

Case study: A client perspective on KM
When I presented at Ark Group’s KM Legal event in April, my main objective was to offer law firms an insight into a typical client’s perspective in knowledge management (KM). While many law firms – as knowledge-based organisations – might assume that there is a huge divide between the way they collate, store, manage and disseminate know-how across their organisations, and how an average enterprise business utilises its information and data, there are perhaps more similarities than you would think. In fact, many larger multi-national companies have the same business drivers for effective KM processes and systems, the same information challenges and, sometimes, additional factors that might not be relevant to a law firm.

Book review
As a member of Patti Anklam’s 2003 Gennova Emergent Learning Network from which Net Work emerged, this is undoubtedly a positively biased review. Hearing the author explain ?energy? in networks in organisations at a 2003 Advanced Thinkers Summit both introduced me to Patti Anklam’s Net Work wisdom and prompted my pursuit of the ideas.

Profile: Managing information
Amanda McKenzie’s career experience in information management is perhaps a little more unusual than the conventional route into library services, which more commonly, or traditionally, would start with a library sciences degree. After all, she actually trained for a legal career. Once she completed her LPC (or the Law Society Finals – LSF as it was called at the time), she started doing legal executive work. But the challenges and diversity of information services in the legal profession convinced her to move into information – joining the information team of a large law firm 15 years ago, followed by mid-tier UK law firm Olswang, where she has remained ever since.


Cover feature: Worth their weight in gold
Tim Castorina, managing professional support lawyer (PSL) at international firm Linklaters, discusses the characteristics that can make a PSL truly indispensable to their firm with Kate Clifton.

Thought leader
One of the hot topics of the moment (and, in all likelihood, the foreseeable future) is the impact of external investment into the profession as a result of the Legal Services Act. The knowledge strategist will recognise that any assessment of their firm for investment appraisal purposes will involve thorough due diligence of the KM function and a view being taken of its ‘value added’ contribution and potential.

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