Leadership in Law Firms: Optimized for Online

About the Program

PROGRAM DATES: September 27-October 1, 2021



Leadership in Law Firms: Optimized for Online

Leadership in Law Firms: Optimized for Online will empower senior leaders with the leadership concepts and tools they need to effectively drive strategy and lead teams in today’s ever-changing, global landscape. This fully live, online, five-day program explores core leadership topics using engaging case study discussions and workshops led by Harvard Law School Executive Education faculty.

Leadership in Law Firms: Optimized for Online provides the opportunity to connect with leaders from around the world and engage with Harvard faculty in real time on critical issues. Learn frameworks and strategies for balancing professional responsibilities, strategic planning, managing growth and change, and motivating people and teams.


Remarkably relevant to my current situation. Leadership in Law Firms: Optimized for Online was adjusted to be timely given the challenges of the pandemic.
– LLF:OO 2020 Participant

Leadership in Law Firms: Optimized for Online is a five-day program that will help you be a more effective law firm leader. The program aims to prepare you to:

  • Identify and apply personal leadership strategies to better balance your complex responsibilities as a leader within your firm.
  • Develop and lead your team more effectively.
  • Understand the importance of organizational strategy as a driver of strategic decision making.
  • Adapt to and navigate within the changing legal profession.

The Learning Model

Case studies on law firms and other professional service firms give participants exposure to real-world issues and help them work through possible approaches and solutions to the problems that professional service firm leaders confront. Participants practice making decisions about challenging real-life management problems in professional service settings.


The program is designed to sharpen the leadership skills of professionals who have executive responsibilities in law firms by exploring topics including:

  • Understanding yourself as a leader
  • Strategies for successfully managing and leading across your increasingly broad set of responsibilities
  • Leading change and leading in a crisis during challenging economic times
  • Applying principles of adaptive leadership to guide your firm to a “new normal”
  • Motivating professionals and having difficult conversations
  • Developing strategy and enhancing organizational alignment to strategy
  • Leading teams and managing team conflict
  • Developing your personal agenda for impact

Program Format

Leadership in Law Firms: Optimized for Online will take place on Harvard’s Zoom platform. There will be two program sessions each day between the hours of 10:00 a.m. ET and 4:00 p.m. ET. Accepted participants should reserve this window on their calendars until we circulate a finalized program schedule. Each session will be between 1-2 hours long, and we will schedule a break of at least 30 minutes between the two daily sessions.

In order to complete the program and earn a certificate of completion, participants are expected to attend every session. As with our on-campus programs, class size will be limited.

Building Community and Networks

Our highly interactive sessions will include frequent breakout group discussions and activities. These opportunities will help ensure that participants get to know each other and learn from each other’s thoughts, ideas and perspectives. Additionally, participants who complete the program will join our global Alumni Network, through which they will be invited to attend future residential and online programs offered by HLS Executive Education.

“I was impressed by the utilization of Zoom for Leadership in Law Firms: Optimized for Online. Class discussions, small group breakout sessions, and even informal conversations were facilitated smoothly and efficiently. It created a rich learning environment and I was able to easily interact and connect with faculty and other participants.”

Kristine McKinney
Chief Legal Talent and Inclusion Officer
Fish and Richardson

Who Should Attend?

Participants include leaders of law firms worldwide and the average LLF participant has 20+ years of professional experience, on average. Participants in this program should be currently active as senior law firm leaders, in roles such as Managing Partner, Chair of Firm, Senior Partner, Practice Group Head, or C-suite level executive (Chief Marketing Officer, Chief Financial Officer, etc.) at the time of attendance.

Participants should manage or oversee other lawyers and/or professionals in their current role. Those planning to transition into a senior firm leadership role should apply for the program once they are active in that role.

Visit the Admissions page for information on the process.

The Teaching Team

Our core faculty are members of the Harvard Law School faculty – distinguished academicians, educators, researchers, authors, and practitioners in their respective fields. Representing various disciplines, they are close to practice through relationships with law firm leaders and through personal involvement as consultants for top firms around the world.

Program Teaching Team

Scott Westfahl – Program Chair

Farayi Chipungu

Christopher Robichaud

Hillary Sale

David B. Wilkins

Learn more about the Leadership in Law Firms: Optimized for Online faculty→


Custom Programs

Need a more customized approach? We provide programming tailored to meet the specific needs of senior firm leaders. Learn more.


Harvard is authorized to offer distance education under the State Authorization Reciprocity Agreement (SARA), an agreement that allows institutions of higher education in Massachusetts to offer distance education to students residing in other states that participate in SARA. For information about SARA-related student complaint processes for distance education students, please see https://vpal.harvard.edu/nc-sara.