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Ahead of the Curve

October 2022


The Professional Development Advisory Committee’s (PDAC) purpose in providing you this communication is to further its goal of periodically sharing topical information regarding the legal industry. Our hope is that one or more of the updates will provide a spark of insight to assist with your work on behalf of ALA as well as within your firm or legal department.


“What Law Governs the Metaverse?”

Source: Smita Verma, Blockchain Councill

In brief: “Metaverse is a term used to describe an ecosystem that combines virtual reality and mixed reality to offer real-time interactions between people. It comprises concepts such as blockchain technology, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, and AI to help users engross themselves in immersive experiences. The technology unlocks the potential of a simulated real-life environment where people can talk, work, and play using specialized glasses, headsets, controllers, and related resources.”

PDAC says: “While this is all still difficult for me to comprehend, it's fascinating (and a bit strange, if not scary).”

“Microsoft Hired 50,000 People During the Pandemic. Here's the No. 1 Lesson CEO Satya Nadella Learned About Remote Onboarding”

Source: Jessica Stillman, Inc.

In brief: “Three years deep into the work-from-home transformation, it's becoming increasingly clear that remote work is excellent for some things and lousy for others. If you're doing heads-down execution, study after study shows, remote work can't be beat. But if you're attempting creative collaboration or communicating culture and unwritten rules to new employers, remote work poses stiff challenges. How do you overcome these challenges?”

PDAC says: “This article is not from the typical legal industry reference source; however, it does emphasize the importance of communication when it comes to management and leadership. A good reminder for those lessons learned discussions.”

“Non-lawyer Licensing Movement Gains Steam with Oregon Approval”

Source: Karen Sloan, Reuters

In brief: “Oregon is the latest state to embrace regulatory changes allowing so-called legal paraprofessionals — non-lawyers who are specially trained to provide legal services in limited areas of the law. The Oregon Supreme Court on Wednesday gave final approval to a licensed paralegal program that the Oregon State Bar has been developing since 2017.”

PDAC says: “Licensed paralegals? Interesting article.”

“How Can You Be Sure Your Company Has Exceptional Leaders? A New Study Boils It All Down to 1 Skill”

Source: Marcel Schwantes, Inc.

In brief: “If you're waiting until a crisis strikes to help your employees rebound, you're already too late. Complex change is now a constant feature of our personal and professional lives — as infectious disease, global conflict, layoffs, and record inflation have indicated. As companies' growth potentially slows and budgets shrink, organizations will ask their people to do more with less under continually evolving and unpredictable contexts.”

PDAC says: “Remote work schedules and motivating staff remain an important issue for leaders.”