The irreversible shift in the legal industry and how to respond to it, will be addressed by Canadian NewLaw thought leader and author Mitch Kowalski when he meets with leading figures from the worlds of insurance, business and academia this month as part of an Australian tour hosted by legal services entrepreneur HBA Legal.

"Law firms are often so over-invested in their original model that they miss and even ignore the changing needs and desires of their clients," said Kowalski. "The key to long-term law firm success is balancing the need to fully exploit what currently works, with the need to explore new ideas.

"Design-thinking law firms are those that achieve that balance; these are firms that continually reassess if they're moving in the right direction by truly empathizing with clients."

Legal innovators Nathan Hepple and Brett Ablong, founders of the HBA Group (comprising HBA Legal, claims management business Paratus and LPO Pillion) are introducing Mr. Kowalski to audiences in NSW, Qld and WA in a series of design thinking workshops and seminars focussing on what Kowalski calls 'the great legal reformation'.

"On a practical level, Mitch considers how design thinking can play its part in delivering vastly superior legal services," Hepple explained. "We're training all our people in design thinking, and we want to share that with clients too. The secret's in partnership, success is dependent on clients and service providers opening their minds and shattering old paradigms."

HBA's seminars with Kowalski introduce the benefits of design thinking for legal services and unpack the main drivers of industry change and how these are changing the legal service delivery model.

"It's sink or swim time," said Hepple. "Clients have pressing commercial demands, and new start ups are doing amazing things in IT solutions. Gaining global insights from someone like Mitch keeps Australia at the head of the game. Let's be leaders in this space."

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