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Knowledge Management and the Smarter Lawyer

by Gretta Rusanow, Esq.

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“It is the first book I would give any person interested in the field!”
Larry Prusak, Babson College, author of  Working Knowledge

Knowledge management is the leveraging of your firm's collective wisdom to achieve your business objectives. It's identifying, capturing and using knowledge to full advantage. Knowledge management is more than data management and technology. It's more than case law, legislation and best practice documents.

Knowledge Management and the Smarter Lawyer provides key components and strategies specifically designed to help build and implement a knowledge management organization and create a corporate culture that supports it. This unique book will help you maximize the knowledge that drives your firm's business. Whether you are a large law firm, solo practitioner, in-house counsel or lawyer in the public sector, knowledge management is a business imperative.

Book #ALM14; softcover, one volume, 500 pages; published in 2003. ISBN: 978-1-58852-116-3

This title is available in digital format. Downloadable PDF included in your purchase.
Print editions must be returned within 30 days in resalable condition for refund. A refund will be granted if the PDF has not been downloaded.


  • Availability: Available
  • Brand: ALM Publishing
  • Product Type: Books
  • Edition: 0
  • Page Count: 500
  • ISBN: 9781588521163
  • Pub#/SKU#: ALM 14
  • Volume(s): 1

Author Image
  • Gretta Rusanow, Esq.

Gretta Rusanow, Esq., is the chief executive of Curve Consulting, with offices in Sydney and New York. She advises U.S., Australian and European law firms and corporations on knowledge management, e-business, legal management, and technology initiatives. Ms. Rusanow holds a BA LLB from the University of New South Wales. She can be contacted at grettarusanow@curveconsulting.com.

For more information about the author - visit www.curveconsulting.com


Contents
v Acknowledgments
vii Introduction

PART 1
Knowledge Management and the Business of Law


Chapter 1
Managing Knowledge Is About Working Smarter
• Defining Knowledge Management
• Why Knowledge Management Is Critical
• A Brief History of Knowledge Management in Law Firms
• The Opportunities for Knowledge Management
• Achieving Business Objectives Through Knowledge Management
• Defining Knowledge Management Objectives
• Defining Knowledge Management Initiatives
• The Scope of Knowledge Management
• The Value of Knowledge Management to Lawyers
• The Role of Management
• The Results of Knowledge Management

Chapter 2
How Does Our Firm Get Started?
Who Will Lead the Charge?
• Gain Management Support
• Form a Knowledge Management Team
• Management Sends a Clear Message
• Understand the Knowledge Needs of the Firm
• Draft a Knowledge Management Strategy (Chapter 8)
• Management Adopts the Knowledge Management Strategy
• Implementing Knowledge Management (Chapter 9)
• Take a Phased Approach to Implementation
• Apply Business Rigor to Every Phase and Every Initiative
• Write a Project Plan
• Draft a Business Case
• Run a Pilot
• Measure the Value of Every Initiative (Chapter 10)
• Leveraging Knowledge Management with Clients (Chapter 11)

PART II
Critical Elements of Knowledge Management

Chapter 3
Defining the Scope of Knowledge

• Knowledge, Information and Data
• Tacit and Explicit Knowledge
• Knowledge for the Practice of Law
• Knowledge for the Business of Law
• Define the Broad Categories of Knowledge
• Knowledge About the Law
• Knowledge About the Firm and Its Practice Areas
• Knowledge About Clients
• Knowledge About the Commercial Market and Specific Industries
• Knowledge About Staff Skills and Expertise
• Methodology and Processes
• Past Projects and Lessons Learned
• Knowledge About Third Parties
• Knowledge About the Firm's Market Position
• Knowledge About the Firm's Revenue, Costs and Profitability
• The Value of Knowledge
• The Owners of Knowledge
• Define the Scope of Knowledge Your Firm Should Manage

Chapter 4
Defining the Scope of Knowledge Management
Defining Knowledge Management
• A Word About “Create”
• Knowledge Management Applied
• Defining Knowledge Management Initiatives
• The Knowledge Analysis Model
• Firm or Practice Group Knowledge Management?
• Law Firm Knowledge Management-Some Illustrations
• Managing Explicit Knowledge
• Managing Tacit Knowledge
• Addressing Cultural and Organizational Barriers
• From Simple to Complex
• Define the Scope of Knowledge Management at Your Firm

Chapter 5
Developing the Knowledge Management Organization
The Role of the Knowledge Management Organization
• Should the Knowledge Management Organization Be Decentralized or Centralized?
• The Head of Knowledge Management
• Who Should Lead Your Knowledge Management Organization?
• To Whom Does the Head of Knowledge Management Report?
• Composition of the Knowledge Management Organization
• Size of the Knowledge Management Organization
• Reporting Relationship Between Knowledge Management Staff and the Head of Knowledge Management
• The Knowledge Management Organization in the Context of the Wider Firm
• The Knowledge Management Committee
• The Practice Group Knowledge Management Partner
• Career Path and Compensation Model for Knowledge Management Staff
• Develop Your Knowledge Management Organization

Chapter 6
Creating a Knowledge Management Culture
The Time-Based Billing Model
• Other Major Cultural Barriers
• Why the Law Firm Culture Is Conducive to Knowledge Management
• The Target Knowledge Management Culture
• Addressing Cultural Barriers
• Illustrating How to Address Cultural Barriers
• Knowledge Management Must Reflect the Culture of the Firm
• Create Your Firm's Knowledge Management Culture

Chapter 7
Knowledge Management Technology
Keys to the Knowledge Management System
• Define the Scope of Knowledge
• Define the Components of Your Knowledge Management System
• Leverage What You Have
• Apply Business Rigor to Implementing Knowledge Management Technology
• Make Sure Your Systems Integrate
• Your Knowledge Management System Should Be Easy to Use
• Store Content Only Once
• Apply Standards to the Capture of Content (Or Avoiding “Garbage In/Garbage Out”)
• Categorize Knowledge According to a Firm Taxonomy
• Attach an Appropriate Level of Security to Knowledge
• Provide Easy Access to Knowledge
• Make the Technology Source Invisible to the User
• Present Knowledge in Multiple Views
• Facilitate Knowledge Sharing Across Practice Groups and Offices
• Facilitate Knowledge Sharing with Your Clients
• The Evolution of the Knowledge Management System
• Create Your Knowledge Management System

PART III
How to Approach Knowledge Management

Chapter 8
The Knowledge Management Strategy
What Is the Knowledge Management Strategy?
• Why Your Firm Needs a Knowledge Management Strategy
• Elements of the Knowledge Management Strategy
• Scope
• Organization
• Culture
• Technology
• How to Develop Your Knowledge Management Strategy
• Get Management to Adopt Your Knowledge Management Strategy
• Develop Your Firm's Knowledge Management Strategy

Chapter 9
Implementing Knowledge Management
Who Will Lead Implementation?
• Turn Your Knowledge Management Strategy into Specific Initiatives
• Define the Value and Complexity of Each Initiative
• Prioritize Implementation of Initiatives
• Take a Phased Approach to Implementation
• Take a Parallel Approach to Implementation
• Firm-Wide Initiatives
• Practice Group Initiatives
• Other Elements of Implementation
• Common Implementation Issues
• Implement Knowledge Management at Your Firm

Chapter 10
The Value of Knowledge Management
Knowledge Management Is a Business Imperative
• Lower Costs, More Revenue, Greater Profitability
• Align Your Knowledge Management Strategy with Your Business Strategy
• Define the Measurements of Value of Knowledge Management
• Measure the Value of Knowledge Management
• Demonstrate the Value of Knowledge Management
• Knowledge Management as a Profit Center
• Ensure That Knowledge Management Brings Value to Your Firm

Chapter 11
Knowledge Management and Your Clients
Knowledge Management and Business Development Strategy
• Knowledge Management as a Market Differentiator
• Client Access to Client Related Knowledge
• Client Access to Law Firm Knowledge Management
• Client Tailored Knowledge Management
• Development of Market Products Based on Knowledge Management
• Knowledge Management-Based Products--The Threshold Issues
• Knowledge Management and E-Business
• Succeeding at E-Business
• Ensure Knowledge Management Supports Business Development at Your Firm
• Ensure Your Firm Leverages Its Knowledge Management Efforts with Clients

PART IV
Knowledge Management for Other Shapes and Sizes

Chapter 12
Knowledge Management and the Law Department
Getting Started
• What Is Your Organization's Approach to Knowledge Management?
• Gain High Level Law Department Management Support
• Form a Knowledge Management Team
• Management Sends a Clear Message
• Understand the Knowledge Needs of the Department
• Draft a Knowledge Management Strategy
• The Scope of Knowledge
• The Scope of Knowledge Management
• Knowledge Management Organization
• Knowledge Management Culture
• Knowledge Management Technology
• Implementing Knowledge Management
• Measure and Demonstrate the Value of Every Initiative
• Introduce Knowledge Management into Your Law Department

Chapter 13
Knowledge Management and the Solo Practitioner
Why Knowledge Management Is Important to a Solo Practitioner
• Understand What Your Business Objectives Are and How Knowledge Management Can Support Those Objectives
• Understand What You Do and How You Use Knowledge to Do It
• Define the Categories of Knowledge You Use (the Scope of Knowledge)
• Examine How Best to Manage That Knowledge (the Scope of Knowledge Management)
• Examine How Best to Facilitate Knowledge Management
• Develop a Knowledge Management Strategy
• Implement Knowledge Management
• Knowledge Management and Your Clients
• Introduce Knowledge Management into Your Practice

Glossary
Index
About the Author