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Global law firm Herbert Smith Freehills is launching People Forums to better connect the firm’s people with its leadership teams and play a greater role in helping shape business direction.

Four Forums will be established, one each in Asia, Australia, EMEA and the UK/US, with nominations open to everyone in the firm outside the partnership.

Applicants will be selected based on their passion for the firm’s culture and the perspective that they can contribute.

“Our people have told us that they want a closer connection with the firm’s leaders, and to do more to help shape the direction of our business,” said Herbert Smith Freehills’ CEO Justin D’Agostino.

“I have always believed that we can transform our business by engaging and empowering the talent present at every level of the firm, and the Forums will broaden the voices and ideas reaching our leadership teams.”

The Forums will feed back to the firm’s leaders on how best to implement global and regional priorities – and in turn, help create the best experience for people in the firm. At a regional level, the forums will:

  1. increase the range of perspectives and experiences considered by leadership by involving the broader business
  2. test ideas prior to implementation
  3. generate and share new ideas with the newly formed People & Culture Advisory Board and each regional Executive
  4. support and champion the implementation of initiatives.

Nominations will open shortly. “We want to create groups with innovative, wide-ranging perspectives that reflect the diversity of our business,” said Justin. “The People Forums will be places where all members can contribute openly and honestly – and where hierarchy isn't important.”

The Forums are a key initiative from the firm’s new People & Culture Advisory Board which was formed in June. The Board works with the firm’s Global Executive and Council to reinforce a culture of engagement, ambition and high performance by putting the firm’s people, and the experience that Herbert Smith Freehills creates for its clients, at the heart of its business.


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Lydia Lam

Lydia Lam, Head of Communications, UK, US & EMEA