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One of Jenner & Block’s core values is to create and maintain an unrivaled environment for superior talent. This means ensuring that all of our people feel respected, included and able to fully contribute.We have a variety of programs, policies and support structures designed to support this goal. A common focus and theme is helping our lawyers develop relationships that cross levels, backgrounds and offices. By building networks and establishing relationships, we help everyone succeed.
Training and Development
Our comprehensive in-house training and development programs are designed to support our lawyers in becoming the best lawyers they can be. They are led by a full-time partner who serves as the firm’s Chief Talent Officer. In addition, the firm expects all of our partners to mentor and train associates – everyone is responsible for developing talent, this is a defining element of our culture.
When new lawyers join the firm, they participate in diversity training as part of their orientation process. Our Mentoring Program also provides important support during the first few years of an lawyer’s career. We assign mentor and mentee pairs across differences to further our goal of creating an inclusive environment.
With input from our Associates Committee, the Diversity & Inclusion Committee and the Associate Board of the Diversity & Inclusion Committee, we continue to develop programs that enhance our formal mentoring program. As an example, we have instituted a “buddy” program for lateral associates. This allows mid and senior associates arriving to the firm to have a designated associate to turn to as he/she adjusts to life at a new firm. In 2017, we also launched a “Just Lunch” program to encourage partners to meet associates outside of their practice groups for an informal supplement to our mentoring program.
Each year, the firm hosts a large lateral associate and partner orientation program. Each program is uniquely tailored to help new associates, lateral associates, law clerks, lateral partners and newly promoted partners integrate into the culture and practice at Jenner & Block.
Other important support structures for promoting an inclusive environment are the firm’s seven affinity groups:
These groups provide a forum for lawyers to share experiences and resources, provide role models, informal mentoring, and give feedback to the firm on diversity-related matters. The affinity groups work with the Diversity & Inclusion Committee, the Associate Board and the Hiring Committee to develop programs and initiatives designed to increase the diversity of the firm’s lawyers and provide support for diverse lawyers.
Read what members of these affinity groups have to say about their experience In Their Words.
Jenner & Block communicates about its diverse workforce and inclusive environment through firm-sponsored publications. Equal Time, the firm’s diversity newsletter, includes stories about the accomplishments of Jenner & Block diverse lawyers; legal view points from diverse lawyers and/or clients; and the pro bono and community service the firm provides on matters relating to women, minorities or LGBT communities. Equal Time issues include Focus on Diversity (lawyers of color); Women in Focus (women lawyers); and LGBT Community Service (openly gay lawyers).
In addition, the firm has a Diversity page on its intranet that keeps everyone up to date on current initiatives and upcoming diversity-related events and activities that the firm is hosting or sponsoring.