• Aug 17

    Establishing and Maintaining a Wellness Program with Krista Hart

    ALA member Krista Hart discusses how and why she established a wellness program for staff and attorneys at her firm, Panitch Schwarze Belisario & Nadel. She also talks about how the program has had to adapt to the new normal of a remote workforce with many additional COVID-19-inflicted challenges.

    Look for Krista's "Tough Topics" column in the September 2020 issue of Legal Management. In the meantime, check out these existing ALA resources:

    Speaker Bio

    Krista Hart is a Firm Administrator who is dedicated to assisting the Panitch Schwarze Belisario & Nadel attorneys and staff with all their workplace needs. Motivated by the belief that employees are the No. 1 asset of a firm, Hart sees her role as crucial to maintaining Panitch Schwarze’s workplace culture. She currently serves as President-Elect of Association of Legal Administrators’ Philadelphia Chapter.

    • Aug 17

    The Value of Continuing Education with John Jakovenko, CLM, SPHR, MBA

    ALA member John Jakovenko, CLM, SPHR, MBA, chats about the importance of continuing education in the professional development of staff in a law firm or legal department. After all, the lawyers do CLE, don't they?

    Jakovenko is the instructor for ALA's HR-themed web-based courses, which delve deep over six weeks into the knowledge needed for success as a legal management professional. You can register now for HR2: Performance Management and Compensation, which begins on September 17, 2020.

    Speaker Bio

    John Jakovenko, CLM, SPHR, MBA, is the Firm Administrator at Sparks Law, LLC, in Alpharetta, Georgia. His career spans two decades and includes leadership roles in human resource departments in law firms in Los Angeles and Atlanta. He is also an adjunct professor at Kennesaw State University, teaching courses on human resources.

    • May 26

    Leadership During Uncertain Times with Brianna Leung

    GrowthPlay Consultant Brianna Leung returns to the podcast to discuss her recent Legal Management cover feature about change, which turned out to be a prescient topic as the COVID-19 pandemic alters our professional and personal lives.

    Read the article, "Leading Through Change," and take a short exam if you'd like to earn a continuing education credit. You can hear Leung's last appearance on the podcast here.

    Speaker Bio

    Brianna Leung is a Principal Consultant with GrowthPlay, where she leverages talent analytics to help legal professionals drive innovation and change within their organizations.

    • May 26

    Marketing and Managing Law Firm Expenses After COVID-19 with Ross Fishman, JD

    Ross Fishman, JD, expands on his recent Legal Management column about avoiding slashing all marketing costs due to the COVID-19-related business downturn ("The Top 5 Budget Items Law Firms Will Try to Slash in Response to COVID-19"). Instead, he advocates for hustling for new business, emphasizing busy practice areas and focusing your spend where it counts in order to stay competitive.

    Fishman's newest books can be found on Amazon: The Ultimate Law Firm Associate's Working-From-Home Marketing Checklist and The Ultimate Law Firm Partner’s Working-From-Home Marketing Checklist.

    Easter egg: See if you can count how many times the host's dog insists her squeaky toy is more important than this interview. Working from home!

    Speaker Bio

    Ross Fishman, JD, specializes in branding, websites and marketing training for law firms. A former litigator, marketing director and marketing partner, he has helped hundreds of firms dominate their markets. Fishman was the first inductee into the Legal Marketing Association’s “Hall of Fame.” He’s written seven marketing books, which are available on Amazon.

    • Apr 13

    Wellness Strategies During the Pandemic with Lance Breger

    Lance Breger joins us to talk about how to handle team-building, negative emotions and wellness as we deal with remote work and major stressors during the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Visit ALA's Coronavirus Response webpage for more resources.

    Speaker Bio

    Lance Breger is the Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Infinity Wellness Partners, where he helped create a WorkLIFE Wellness Program and Executive Coaching Program. His company partners with forward-thinking executives, organizations and industries around the world to spread holistic health throughout the corporate landscape to make wellness a priority in the workplace every day.

    • Apr 13

    Three Types of Operational Excellence with Rob Mattern

    Rob Mattern discusses information governance, outsourcing and back-office efficiency as they relate to his latest educational offerings for the ALA audience.

    Learn more from Rob through an upcoming webinar, The Getting to Zero Strategy, and his column in the March issue of Legal Management, "The Efficiency of the Attorney Experience in Your Firm’s Back Office."

    Speaker Bio

    Rob Mattern, MBA, is President and Founder of Mattern, LLC. Mattern has been widely published, including recently in the The Wall Street JournalLaw Technology News and Legal Management magazine. He is an editorial board member of Law Journal Newsletters’ Accounting Financial Planning for Law Firms.

    • Mar 27

    Cost Recovery for E-Discovery and Litigation with Rob Mattern and Nathan Curtis

    Rob Mattern and Nathan Curtis discuss Mattern, LLC's first-of-its-kind survey about law firm cost recovery for e-discovery and litigation support.

    Find the survey here. Learn more from Rob through an upcoming webinar, The Getting to Zero Strategy, and his column in the March issue of Legal Management, "The Efficiency of the Attorney Experience in Your Firm’s Back Office."

    Speaker Bios

    Rob Mattern, MBA, is President and Founder of Mattern, LLC. Mattern has been widely published, including recently in the The Wall Street Journal, Law Technology News and Legal Management magazine. He is an editorial board member of Law Journal Newsletters’ Accounting Financial Planning for Law Firms.

    Nathan Curtis, IGP, is a Consultant at Mattern, LLC, where he is focused on emerging technologies and their application in the legal environment, driving results through Mattern’s customized RFP process, and overseeing service, technology and policy implementations. He is also a Six Sigma Yellow Belt.

    • Mar 27

    Supporting Associates into Becoming Rainmakers with Stephanie Hanna

    Stephanie R. Hanna, Esq., the Founder of professional coaching firm The Other 85, discusses how to retain talented associates, teach them the ways of business and set them on a path toward rainmaker status.

    Stephanie is speaking at ALA's 2020 Annual Conference & Expo in Salt Lake City, Utah. Her Legal Industry/Business Management education session is titled Building Rainmakers: How to Help Set Up the Next Generation for Success. View the session description here.

    Speaker Bio

    Stephanie R. Hanna, Esq., is the Founder and Owner of The Other 85. She has been coaching law students and attorneys for the past decade — helping them navigate the profession, build their reputation and develop their careers. Having been a prosecutor, judicial staff attorney, solo practitioner, magistrate and law firm associate, Stephanie understands the dynamics at play in each environment.

    • Mar 23

    Coronavirus-Related IT and Remote Work Concerns with Michael Kemps

    We spoke with IT consultant Michael Kemps about managing the remote workplace and keeping IT systems afloat as law firms and legal departments revise work-from-home policies in the wake of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

    He's a featured source in the Legal Management article "Surviving COVID-19: Tips for Managing a Healthy Workforce and Keeping Your Clients Informed." You can find more resources on ALA's Coronavirus Response webpage.

    Speaker Bio

    Michael Kemps is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Innovative Computing Systems, Inc., where he cultivates relationships with clients and partners and, with his management team, provides leadership, strategic and ethical direction and oversight of company operations.

    • Mar 2

    Succession Planning for Administrative Managers with Cynthia Thomas

    Cynthia Thomas discusses how to protect your law firm's operations by succession planning not only for attorneys but also for administrators. She is speaking at ALA's 2020 Annual Conference & Expo in Salt Lake City, Utah. Her Human Resources Management education session is titled Don’t Let Institutional Knowledge Walk Out the Door: Succession Planning for Administrative Managers.

    View the session description here, and make sure you're registered for the May 3–6 event.

    Speaker Bio

    Cynthia Thomas is the Interim Operations Manager at A to Z Law and Owner of PLMC & Associates, a law firm management consulting company that provides best practices in human resources and staffing. She is the Associate Editor of the editorial board of Law Practice and the Co-Vice Chair of the ABA LP Lawyer Leadership and Management Committee. She often writes articles on and is invited to speak and conduct presentations focusing on law firm staffing of the future and lean staffing.

    • Mar 2

    Adding Apps to Your Toolkit with Anna Cates Williams, JD, MBA

    Anna Cates Williams, JD, MBA, shares her thoughts about improving efficiency by increasing your app use. She is speaking at ALA's 2020 Annual Conference & Expo in Salt Lake City, Utah. Her Operations Management education session is titled Apps and Social Media: A Firm Administrator’s Toolkit.

    View the session description here, and make sure you're registered for the May 3–6 event. As she mentions in the podcast, you can reach out to Anna with questions via LinkedIn.

    Speaker Bio

    Anna Cates Williams, JD, MBA, is the Executive Director of Walker Lambe, PLLC, a boutique estate planning firm in Durham, North Carolina. She drives marketing, operations and financial initiatives for the firm. Williams has a diverse work history in law firm marketing and operations. She began practicing law with a healthcare start-up in Nashville, Tennessee, where she worked within the legal procurement team, negotiating alternative billing strategies as the client. She later moved into business development and management with a leading legal staffing and recruiting organization, where she partnered with large firm marketing and practice development teams delivering e-discovery and managed services solutions.

    • Dec 9

    Resolving to Balance the Scales in 2020 with Brianna Leung

    Brianna Leung of GrowthPlay talks about New Year's resolutions for the busy professional. She wrote “Resolve to Balance the Scales in 2020,” the Business Partner Perspective column for the January issue of Legal Management. That issue will be published January 10.

    Speaker Bio

    Brianna Leung is a Principal Consultant with GrowthPlay, where she leverages talent analytics to help legal professionals drive innovation and change within their organizations.

    • Dec 2

    The Changing Role of Law Firm Leadership with Jennifer Hill

    Staffing expert and recruiting consultant Jennifer Hill talks about the conclusions she reached and action items she detailed in her white paper for ALA, “The Changing Role of Law Firm Leadership.”

    You can also read her previous white paper, “The Changing Role of the Legal Secretary,” and register for her webinars, like Is the Legal Secretary Becoming Extinct? and Creating an Empowered Environment. All of ALA’s free white papers can be found here.

    Speaker Bio

    Jennifer Hill is President of JHill’s Staffing Services, a Division of Marcum Search LLC. She began recruiting in 2003 and has recruited for top-tier law firms and corporations throughout the United States. Hill also hosts a weekly radio show on LA Talk Radio, “Get Yourself the Job,” for more than 30,000 listeners a month; she interviews experts and authors from around the world about landing one's dream job.
    • Oct 15

    The State of ALA with Oliver Yandle, JD, CAE

    ALA Executive Director Oliver Yandle joins the podcast to talk about how conferences are going and discuss what your Association has planned for the future.

    Here are reference links for some of the things Oliver talked about:

    Speaker Bio

    Oliver Yandle, JD, CAE, is Executive Director of the Association of Legal Administrators (ALA), the largest international organization providing support to people in the legal management profession. Before joining ALA in July 2012, he served as the Executive Vice President of the Commercial Law League and the Executive Director of the International Association of Defense Counsel. He also was an adjunct instructor of legal analysis and writing at the Washington College of Law at American University.

    • Jul 1

    C4: The Legal Industry Conference with Dan Lear

    Dan Lear, a speaker and facilitator for September's C4: The Legal Industry™ Conference, discusses the event, design thinking and the legal industry challenges attendees will tackle.

    The conference will occur September 18–20 in Boston, Massachusetts. The registration deadline for the early bird rate is August 5. Sign up now

    Dan Lear is a lawyer, blogger and legal industry gadfly. As a technology-focused business lawyer, Lear advised companies from start-ups to the Fortune 100. He has spoken at marquee legal technology events including ILTACON, LegalTech, ReInvent Law New York, ABA TechShow, CodeX FutureLaw at Stanford Law School, and many others. From 2014 to 2018, Lear worked as the Director of Industry Relations at the online legal marketplace, Avvo, where he spoke frequently to lawyers, bar associations and other legal groups. Find him at rightbrainlaw.co or @rightbrainlaw on Twitter.
    • Jun 12

    The 2019 Large Firm Principal Administrators Retreat with Three of the Planners

    A few of the conference's planners — Kim Cannon, David Miceli and Teresa Walker — go over the details of the 2019 Large Firm Principal Administrators Retreat, including some important changes to the format. This year, the annual event will focus less on classroom-style instruction and more on idea exchange among attendees.

    The retreat is happening in Nashville, Tennessee, August 1-3, and eligible legal management professionals are encouraged to register now! Sign up by June 27 to get the discounted early bird rate.

    Speaker Bios

    Kim Cannon is the Chief Operations Officer at Bass Berry & Sims PLC in Nashville, Tennessee. She serves as Chair of the 2019 Large Firm Retreat Planning Committee. Kim is also a member of the Middle Tennessee Chapter of ALA.

    David Miceli is the Executive Director of Balch & Bingham, LLP, in Birmingham, Alabama. He serves as the Chair of the Large Firm Administrators Caucus Steering Committee and thus functions as a liaison to the 2019 Large Firm Retreat Planning Committee. David is also a member of the Birmingham Chapter of ALA.

    Teresa Walker is the Senior Adviser and Chief Operating Officer, Emeritus, at Waller Lansden Dortch & Davis, LLP, in Nashville Tennessee. She has been a leading member of the Large Firm Administrators Caucus for many years. Teresa is also a Past President of ALA, Vice Chair of the Professional Development Advisory Committee and a member of the Middle Tennessee Chapter of ALA.

    • Jun 12

    Discussing "No Stone Unturned" with Nadean Stone, CLM, MBA

    ALA member Nadean Stone, CLM, MBA, describes what it’s like to publish her first book, titled No Stone Unturned: A Remarkable Journey to Identity. She talks about translating painful experiences into a memoir and how her professional background and network of legal management professionals inspire her to keep fighting for justice.

    Speaker Bio

    Nadean Stone, CLM, MBA, is the author of No Stone Unturned: A Remarkable Journey to Identity as well as a legal management consultant. She is a member of the South Florida Chapter of ALA and divides her time between South Florida and Vermont.
    • Sep 10

    Early Career Legal Managers with Sarah Antonello, Danita Jones and Suzy Klepac

    ALA members and Administrators Sarah Antonello, Danita Jones and Suzy Klepac have conceived a new way to support early career legal managers: the First Five Community. A part of ALA's Online Community, this members-only forum will provide a space for asking questions, sharing solutions and networking.

    As mentioned in the episode, the Legal Management article about the Capital Chapter president can be found here.

    Speaker Bios

    Sarah Antonello is the Office Administrator of Husch Blackwell LLP in Omaha, Nebraska. She is a member of the Nebraska Chapter.

    Danita Jones is the Legal Administrator at Chubbuck Duncan & Robey, PC, in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. She is the Treasurer of the Oklahoma City Chapter.

    Suzy Klepac is the Office Administrator at Kirk & Chaney in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. She is the President-Elect of the Oklahoma City Chapter.

    • Sep 4

    Transitioning to a Paperless Law Office with Lori Hughes

    Lori Hughes, a panelist for a session at September's Intellectual Property Conference for Legal Management Professionals, talks about how she transitioned her own office to a paperless, cloud-based storage system.

    Speaker Bio

    Lori Hughes is a member of the ALA Board of Directors as the Region 5 Director and has been an ALA member since 2002. Hughes has been with Miller Nash Graham & Dunn LLP in Portland, Oregon, for 26 years and is the Lead Operations and Information Security Officer. She managed the firm’s “less-paper” initiative and move to its first electronic records system — updated to a cloud solution for records in the past two years — and continues to manage the Records Department as part of her current responsibilities. 

    • Aug 10

    Partner Compensation with Tim Corcoran

    Tim Corcoran talks with us about why law firms might need to change how they handle partner compensation. You can hear more from him on this topic at the 2018 Advanced Financial Administration workshop and the 2018 Regional Legal Management Conferences in both Chicago and Austin.

    Speaker Bio

    Timothy B. Corcoran is a Principal with the Corcoran Consulting Group and a Past President of the Legal Marketing Association. In his practice, he advises law firm leaders, in-house counsel and legal service providers on how to profit during a time of great change. This includes assisting law firm leaders with business strategy, primarily in the areas of operational excellence and business growth, and assisting in-house counsel with managing preferred provider programs. 



    • May 21

    An Audio Overview of the 2018 Annual Conference & Expo

    Wondering what you missed at ALA’s 2018 Annual Conference & Expo? This audio exploration will help you get a partial experience — from speakers like John Quiñones and Vernice Armour to valuable education sessions.

    Interested in attending a future conference? Visit alanet.org/events to learn about our fall conferences, including Regionals and the specialty events, as well as information about the 2019 Annual Conference as it’s announced.

    • Apr 2

    Business Continuity Plans with Kathy Scourby

    Kathy Scourby of KNS Consulting joins us to talk disaster preparedness and business continuity plans. She'll be a presenter at ALA's Annual Conference & Expo in May 2018, and you can find her insights in the April 2018 issue of Legal Management.

    Speaker Bio

    Kathryn Scourby is the Principal of KNS Consulting, LLC. She works with professional service firms to achieve their goals in the areas of business continuity, disaster preparedness, risk management and compliance. Scourby trains management professionals and all levels of staff at private service firms and facilitates tabletop exercises in these focus areas. Additionally, she served on ALA's Board of Directors (2004–2008), was a trustee for the Foundation of the Association of Legal Administrators (2010–2013), and currently serves on ALA's International Relations Committee.

    • Feb 20

    Information Assets Management with James Price

    Information, data and knowledge are important business assets, but most firms aren't managing them in a way that reflects their true value. That's why ALA is conducting a survey in partnership with Experience Matters (James's company) and the University of South Australia: to find industry benchmarks and recommendation for information assets management.

    Speaker Bio

    James Price is the Managing Director of Experience Matters. He has more than 30 years' experience in the information industry in a career that has included working for a global hardware manufacturer, a software developer and a systems integrator. During his career James realized that, in and of itself, hardware and software adds no value — it’s the information that the infrastructure delivers that’s valuable. So he formed Experience Matters, a firm that advises on how to manage vital data, information and knowledge as a business asset. He formed Experience Matters to address the problem that, while Information Assets are vitally important to organisations, by and large they are very poorly managed, usually with significant commercial implications. James is internationally recognized as an author of peer-reviewed papers and a presenter to business and academic conferences.

    • Jan 8

    The Climate for Retirement Plan Sponsors with Norma Sharara

    Mercer Principal Norma Sharara — who works closely with the ABA Retirement Funds Program, an ALA VIP sponsor — describes the current tax and regulatory picture for retirement plans.

    Speaker Bio

    Norma Sharara is a Principal in Mercer’s Washington Resource Group, focusing on tax-qualified and non-qualified retirement plans, including ERISA fiduciary rules, state-run retirement initiatives and federal retirement policy. Sharara has more than 25 years of experience with retirement plan issues. Before joining Mercer in 2015, she practiced law in Washington, D.C., and has been a frequent speaker and author on retirement plan topics.

    The ABA Retirement Funds Program has been supplying retirement plans exclusively to the legal community for over 50 years. Mercer Trust Company is the ABA Retirement Funds Program’s investment fiduciary, investment manager, and trustee and custodian. Mercer has responsibility for development of the investment policy for the program, subject to acceptance by the ABA Retirement Funds; for implementation of the policy; and for monitoring of the platform of fund investments.

    • Dec 18

    Office Remodels and Renovations with Christina Floyd and Karen Leastman

    As law firms continue to grow and merge, the question of office space and configuration is critical to legal management professionals tasked with operations. That's why First American Equipment Finance's Karen Leastman and Christina Floyd have joined us to talk about financing office renovations. You can hear them in full at their 2018 Annual Conference & Expo presentation.

    Speaker Bios

    Christina Floyd is the Vice President of First American Legal Finance and is a Certified Lease and Finance Professional (CLFP). She has almost a decade of equipment leasing knowledge and dedicated experience working with the legal industry. She holds a bachelor's degree in communications and an MBA from St. John Fisher College. Additionally, Floyd successfully completed the Legal Management Finance Specialist Certificate Program through ALA. In her tenure, Floyd has been instrumental in growing First American's legal business to more than 200 firms. 

    Karen Leastman is the Vice President of First American Equipment Finance and has more than a decade of equipment-leasing knowledge and dedicated experience working with the law firm industry. Since joining First American in 2003, Leastman has been a key contributor in building First American's law firm division, which now serves more than 200 law firms across the United States, including AmLaw 100 and 200 firms. As a Certified Lease and Finance Professional (CLFP), she's a leader in the equipment leasing industry.


    • Dec 6

    Succession Planning with Michael Moore

    Michael Moore, a speaker at ALA's 2018 Annual Conference & Expo, talks with us about law-firm succession planning.

    Speaker Bio

    Michael Moore, JD, is the Founder of Moore's Law, LLC, and helps both lawyers and law firms create professional success. Moore specializes in individual marketing, client development, and leadership coaching and advises law firms on strategic planning, growth initiatives and resource optimization. A frequent speaker at ALA events across the country, his current topics have included mentoring, leadership, financial management and strategic planning.

    • Oct 15

    Web Video with Corey Saban

    Corey Saban, a 2018 Annual Conference speaker, answers some of our questions about the promotional and engagement powers of web video.

    Speaker Bio

    Corey Saban is a Cofounder and Vice President of TheLaw.TV, a platform that helps lawyers effectively reach prospective clients and communicate their stories through video. He started his media career as a TV journalist, interviewing respectable and recognizable figures and scoring Emmy nominations and AP Awards along the way. An accomplished speaker and 15-year news veteran, Saban is now on the other side of the industry, consulting for law firms on media and content strategies.

    • May 5

    The Latest in Hiring and Background Screening with Kevin Prendergast

    Get the answers to your questions about background screening in today's law firm - domestically and internationally.

    Kevin P. Prendergast is the President & General Counsel at Research Associates, Inc., a corporate investigative firm serving clients since 1953.  RAI serves the investigative needs for professional service firms and works with law firms throughout the world for pre-employment background investigations, due diligence in transactional work and litigation support investigations.

    Kevin oversees the compliance program at RAI and works with clients and their counsel in developing legally compliant background screening programs.  Mr. Prendergast graduated from the Cleveland Marshall College of Law and has been licensed to practice law in Ohio since 1987.  He is a member of the American Bar Association, Ohio State Bar Association and the Society for Human Resource Management. 

    • Mar 27

    Get Your Firm On Board with Workflow Technology with Eric Wangler of BigHand

    Eric Wangler is president of the North American business unit for BigHand. With over 15 years of experience in the legal industry, Eric previously served as vice president of Ricoh’s legal vertical segment. Since joining BigHand, Eric has grown the North American business and the BigHand customer base significantly. In addition, Eric led the acquisition of Esquire Innovations (Now BigHand Office) in Temecula, California, a leading provider of Microsoft Office integrated practice management software, services and applications for the legal market. The acquisition has enabled BigHand to broaden its suite of product offerings and continue its mission of providing innovative workflow efficiency software that streamlines processes and empowers attorneys and law firm support staff to deliver their best work wherever and whenever needed. 

    Check out Eric's article in the upcoming April issue of Legal Management magazine, at legalmanagement.org.

    • Mar 20

    Administering a Retirement Plan in a Changing Environment with Ginger Brennan

    Ginger Brennan is here with us today to talk about how to administer your firm’s retirement plan in a changing environment. She will also be a speaker on this topic at ALA's Annual Conference & Expo, April 2-5 in Denver, Colorado.

    Speaker Bio

    Ginger Brennan, FINRA Series 6, 7, 24, 26, 63, and Certified Employee Benefits Specialist, is the Senior Vice President and National Director of Sales for the ABA Retirement Funds Program. Brennan is responsible for setting and driving the sales strategy for the program and oversees all of the sales efforts and training for the entire program sales team across the United States. A veteran to retirement plan sales, Brennan brings more than 30 years of experience in sales and sales management.