We’re at a point in the evolution of the legal industry where, despite all the teleconferencing, remote presence, and digital collaboration tools on hand, it’s more important than ever for people to come together in person.
Why? Because no technology has yet been able to quite replace the creative power of a group of people knitting their neurons together in the same place, at the same time, in pursuit of common goals.
That’s certainly one good macro reason. Here are three others that matter more than ever in 2019.
To make connections and feel connected
Making new connections or renewing old ones is part of the point of conferences, but we can lose sight of how important it is to nurture another connection: The one between each of us and the energy and inspiration that can arise from their professional community.
It’s become glaringly clear there’s change afoot in the legal industry, especially on the corporate side at large enterprises. Legal Ops growth, legal tech adoption, and co-innovation between provers, users, and other members of the legal ecosystem are all snowballing.
Yet this entire ‘Legal Rising‘ movement didn’t first catch fire in a webchat. The seeds were planted and their growth were nurtured thanks to organizations like CLOC and events like CLOC Institute. Where people met, face to face, to exchange thoughts and learnings, and discovered they weren’t alone in their ambitions to create transformation.
Whether you’re a Legal Ops professional, a lawyer, or a doctor or an accountant or an engineer, a conference exposes you to the breadth and depth and energy of the community of which you’re a member. It may be easy to become blasé about one’s profession, or at least about junkets and events. But attending something on the scale of a 2019 ACC Annual Meeting can be the opportunity to rekindle a very special spark, and catch hold of new opportunities that only happen in a big room full of like-minded people.
To cut to the lead in what’s cutting-edge
A good conference is rich with opportunities to grow knowledge of your profession, business practices, and everything that’s impacting them. Education is more than ever a cornerstone of ACC Annual, and we’re happy to contribute Mitratech’s session, Lessons learned from the Fortune 500: User Learnings from Implementing e-Billing and Matter Management. It’ll drill down into the insights and challenges over 125 major legal departments encountered as they implemented the Legal Operations discipline.
Outside the education and training tracks, there are brains to pick among fellow attendees, of course. Yet it’s also fruitful to not just do a cursory swag-jag through the exhibitors’ hall. The best of them are dying to answer your questions and provide expert advice. We’re no exception, naturally. Legal tech will be a buzzpoint in Phoenix, just as it should be, with sessions covering everything from AI to blockchain, and new legal tech products and services are constantly making their debuts at these events. Even if you’re not a buyer, it’s good to understand what’s out there, and how tech will impact the practice of law.
Carpe diem? Carpe cras!
Make no mistake, the surge toward a sea-change in how corporate legal departments operate is beginning to look like an inevitability. If you intend to catch this wave, or at least stay abreast of where this so-called “transformation” currently stands or is headed (very rapidly) in the next few years? ACC Annual and other legal conferences are the best places to do that.
Those new approaches extend beyond legal technology or operational improvements. Sustainability, mindfulness, neuroscience, ethical hacking – they’re all on the agenda at legal conferences today, contributing to changes in the business of law. Change management will require us to understand what’s driving change in the first place. Soon, it may not be enough to just stay current. Carpe cras may be more important: seizing tomorrow before changes sweep past and leave stragglers too far behind.
We rest our case. See you in Phoenix!