We asked solicitor and co-founder Colin Secomb from Lewis Denley about creating a good company culture for dads.
Creating the right working culture and promoting best working practice is important for any business to retain their top talent. Therefore, it’s healthy to create an open, honest and transparent culture which can lead to the retention of staff, attract future talent and allow a firm to grow their business and take it to the next level.
The legal sector can sometimes be perceived as traditional and outdated, Lewis Denley is a far cry from this perception. Co-managing partners Natasha Lewis and I are ambitious leaders who have full empathy for the career aspirations of their employees, especially those with children. I’m a father myself, so I fully understand the pressures that come with being a working dad. Which is not always easy in a fast-paced law firm with tight deadlines and cases needing urgent attention.
But, with equality now high on the agenda, this has opened up a level playing field for both working dads [and mums], so flexible working requests should be treated the same.
When it comes to business planning and career development, working dads at Lewis Denley feel open enough to have a frank conversation around planning families, thoughts around how and when they want to get to partner status and planning time off for parental leave. Something that is refreshing to hear from an employee’s perspective and is encouraged top down.
It also makes them appreciate how flexible and hybrid working affords them a more balanced pace around their work and home life. Something I encourage working fathers in the firm to actively request and act on.
In common with their female counterparts, dads shouldn’t have any concerns about the impact taking parental leave or playing a bigger role in childcare might have on their current role or future career prospects.
The pandemic was a wake-up call for many working fathers, who for the first time truly appreciated the struggles of juggling work and family life – as well as the joys of spending more time with their children. So, it’s no surprise they look for employers who will support their needs to carry on this role.
We founded Lewis Denley nearly six years ago and both understand the importance of recruitment, especially around recruiting the right person. Culture is everything – not only as employers – but also for the success of the business. We are great believers that without the right people, you will simply not grow year on year and continue to attract the right talent.
We also share the same mindset when it comes to employees’ wellbeing. We understand the mental health issues the legal sector faces and how life as a solicitor, or in a legal firm can be stressful. We want to create an open and honest culture which allows working dads to speak freely about how they might be feeling and to speak up if they’re struggling.