Pitch Perfect is a speed pitching programme to help women lawyers develop and practice their pitching skills and contacts with female general counsel. It was established in collaboration with the Women's General Counsel Group in Canada. Participants from the firm benefitted from increased exposure to clients, and relationship building, while the women General Counsels had the opportiunity to learn more about the firm itself, to network with other women GCs and to sharpen their skills in assessing law firm/lawyer capabilities. Although this programme is in its early stages, the judges were impressed with an innovative programme that had already showed clear business benefits, with an increase in business wins related to the programme.
From left: Jon Culshaw, Sarah Landry Maltais (McCarthy Tétrault) and Sacha Romanovitch
Last year Mayer Brown launched a six year apprenticeship programme to provide a direct route to qualification as a solicitor for those put off by full-time study. It combines study for an LLB with the Legal Practice Course and Professional Skills Course at the same time as working in different parts of the business. The programme is run in partnership with the University of Law and Aspiring Solicitors. The judges welcomed the initiative, but felt that it was too early to see real results and would have liked more information about the impact of the programme so far.