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Can contracts use pictures instead of words? | Financial Times
Bruce Love OCTOBER 22 2019

* David Sibbet in "Visual Meeting"
* Dan Roam in "Blah Blah Blah: What To Do When Words Don’t Work" 
Both writers advocate the use of graphics and charts to better communicate ideas between people.

Visuals and plain language make an adversarial process more constructive.

Every contract the company writes represents a business relationship that a company would prefer to see fulfilled mutually.....unwieldy contracts stand in the way of harmony.....you spend  so much time building customer relationships that you don’t want a contractual negotiation to then dismantle that relationship brick by brick.....redraft contracts using as much plain English as possible......Making contracts more faithful to the relationships they represent is a popular goal with commercial contracts.....businesses should write contracts that specify mutual goals and governance structures to keep the parties’ expectations and interests aligned over the long term........especially for “highly complex relationships in which it is impossible to predict every ‘what if ’ scenario”.....a curious innovation gathering steam in the legal world: visual contracts that incorporate images alongside or even replace text. The underlying idea is that a picture paints a thousand words.....visual contracts can be used for simple and complex agreements.....there are growing libraries of contract terms that can be assembled as modules to build complete agreements. The goal is to provide businesses with best practice examples of the most frequent and least divergent contract clauses.....While there are many benefits to visual contracts, “simple is difficult”..... It is counterproductive for negotiators to codify every minute detail of a relationship when instead much can be ascribed to a spirit of agreement, more similar to a constitution or code of ethics.
aligned_interests  books  charts  Communicating_&_Connecting  comprehension  contingencies  contracts  deal-making  graphics  infographics  legal  negotiations  plain_English  visualization 
november 2019 by jerryking
How to Give People Advice They’ll Be Delighted to Take
Oct. 21, 2019 | The New York Times | By Anna Goldfarb.

Giving spectacular advice doesn’t necessarily mean people will take it. Advice is a gift, albeit one bundled with inherent power dynamics. That “I know your situation best and here’s what you should do” attitude is what can make advice-giving so fraught.
“Expertise is a tricky thing,” “To take advice from someone is to agree to be influenced by them.” Sometimes when people don’t take advice, they’re rejecting the idea of being controlled by the advice-giver more than anything.
Three  factors determine whether input will be taken to heart. 
(1) was the advice costly to attain and the task is difficult (think: lawyers interpreting a contract)?
(2) Is the advisor more experienced and expresses extreme confidence in the quality of the advice (doctors recommending a treatment, for example)?
(3) Emotion plays a role, too: Decision makers are more likely to disregard advice if they feel certain about what they’re going to do (staying with a dud boyfriend no matter what) or they’re angry (sending an ill-advised text while fuming).

**Make sure you’re actually being asked to give counsel.  ask, “Would you be willing to hear some of my ideas, or is now not a good time?”

** Be clear on the advice-seeker’s goals. identify the exact problem: “What do you want to know specifically that I can help you with?”  Repeat back what you heard to be sure you’ve grasped the heart of the issue. Ask what outcome the advice-seeker hopes to see so your ideas align with the person’s desires. Next, inquire about what has been done to address the problem so your suggestions won’t be redundant.

**Consider your qualifications. People often go to those close to them for advice, even if family members and friends aren’t always in the best position to effectively assist, Ask yourself: “Do I have the expertise, experience or knowledge needed to provide helpful advice in this situation?” If you do, fantastic! Advise away. If you don’t, rather than give potentially unhelpful advice, identify someone who is in a better position to help.

**Be friendly. Words have power. Words can heal.

**Share experience. People tend to resist when advice is preachy. Saying, “I’ve been there and here’s what I did,” makes people more receptive. Recommend books and tools that might provide additional insight: Don't not tell what to do, offer real resources beyond me.

**Look for physical signs of relief.  Examine facial cues and body language.

** Identify takeaways (and give an out).  It’s not realistic for people to act on every piece of advice given. After discussing a problem and suggesting how to handle it, ask what tidbit resonates the most. Then give permission to disregard any suggestions made that weren’t a good fit. 

** Agree on next steps.  What kind of continued support is needed (if any) and what efforts should be avoided (i.e. too overbearing)?
advice  contracts  howto  legal  power_dynamics 
november 2019 by jerryking
A.I. Is Doing Legal Work. But It Won’t Replace Lawyers, Yet. - The New York Times
By STEVE LOHR MARCH 19, 2017

An artificial intelligence technique called natural language processing has proved useful in scanning and predicting what documents will be relevant to a case, for example. Yet other lawyers’ tasks, like advising clients, writing legal briefs, negotiating and appearing in court, seem beyond the reach of computerization, for a while......Highly paid lawyers will spend their time on work on the upper rungs of the legal task ladder. Other legal services will be performed by nonlawyers — the legal equivalent of nurse practitioners — or by technology.

Corporate clients often are no longer willing to pay high hourly rates to law firms for junior lawyers to do routine work. Those tasks are already being automated and outsourced, both by the firms themselves and by outside suppliers like Axiom, Thomson Reuters, Elevate and the Big Four accounting firms.....So major law firms, sensing the long-term risk, are undertaking initiatives to understand the emerging technology and adapt and exploit it.

Dentons, a global law firm with more than 7,000 lawyers, established an innovation and venture arm, Nextlaw Labs, in 2015. Besides monitoring the latest technology, the unit has invested in seven legal technology start-ups.

“Our industry is being disrupted, and we should do some of that ourselves, not just be a victim of it,” John Fernandez, chief innovation officer of Dentons, said.....Artificial intelligence has stirred great interest, but law firms today are using it mainly in “search-and-find type tasks” in electronic discovery, due diligence and contract review,
artificial_intelligence  automation  contracts  corporate_investors  Dentons  e-discovery  IBM_Watson  law  lawtech  lawyers  legal  NLP  start_ups  Steve_Lohr  technology 
march 2017 by jerryking
How Ubernomics can transform Canada’s legal diseconomy - The Globe and Mail
MICHAEL MOTALA
Contributed to The Globe and Mail
Published Friday, Jul. 10, 2015

Technologists from other industries hope Ubernomics is a generalizable business model. This month, the MaRS Discovery District launched LegalX, an industry cluster aimed at promoting local entrepreneurship, driving industry efficiency and pioneering new business models. One of its first startups is a service called LawScout. Like Uber, it offers a simple digital platform aimed at connecting small businesses with local lawyers on a fixed-rate basis. Beagle, another product launched at the event, performs rapid contract analysis using a sophisticated algorithm, while providing a platform for social media-inspired collaboration among decision-making teams....Ubernomics is not a panacea for the legal sector. Rather than disrupt it, it will transform. Big firms are here to stay if they embrace innovation. Digital technologies promise more efficient work flows and higher productivity. The shortcomings of the consensus-driven decision-making structure, exemplified by the fall of Heenan Blaikie, suggests more strategic thinking, stronger leadership and a heavier investment in R&D is needed to make legal work more efficient and cost effective......We live in an absurd legal diseconomy. There is an ever-widening gap between supply and unmet demand. Following the Ontario government's tuition deregulation in 1998, University of Toronto law led the charge, raising tuition by 320 per cent under dean Ron Daniels. Other law schools followed suit and continue to do so. This year, U of T law is unashamed to charge incoming students more than $30,000 a year. Not to be left out, the Law Society of Upper Canada recently doubled its licensing fees. The legal academy is aggravating the access to justice crisis by imposing ever-higher rents on the most vulnerable entrants to the profession. A false and parasitic empiricism has evidently burrowed itself in the minds of our country's greatest legal thinkers.

Ubernomics is not a panacea for the legal sector. Rather than disrupt it, it will transform. Big firms are here to stay if they embrace innovation. Digital technologies promise more efficient work flows and higher productivity. The shortcomings of the consensus-driven decision-making structure, exemplified by the fall of Heenan Blaikie, suggests more strategic thinking, stronger leadership and a heavier investment in R&D is needed to make legal work more efficient and cost effective.........
Businesses like fixed-cost projections. The billable-hour model introduces a lot of uncertainty into the equation. Software such as LawScout is unlikely to undermine the legal industry’s biggest players, but it signals that an economic culture shift lies ahead.
arbitrage  billing  contracts  digital_disruption  disruption  fees_&_commissions  invoicing  law  law_firms  law_schools  lawtech  legal  sharing_economy  start_ups  Uber  unmet_demand  uToronto 
july 2015 by jerryking
Bay Street law firm launches legal ‘incubator’ in Halifax
Jul. 02 2014 | The Globe and Mail | JEFF GRAY - LAW REPORTER

Torys says its new Torys Legal Services Centre, due to open this fall, will act for the Bay Street firm’s established corporate clients, performing high-volume, recurring legal work such as reviewing contracts or performing due diligence on corporate deals.
Bay_Street  contracts  cost-cutting  Halifax  law_firms  legal  Torys  product_launches 
july 2014 by jerryking
Canada urged to defend lead in mining business
January 30, 2013 | Globe & Mail pg. B2 | by Pav Jordan.

A new report on the mining sector is urging Canada to streamline worker immigration procedures and boost tax incentives to encourage exploration in remote areas.
The report by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce warns that the country must not sit on its laurels if it wants to hold its lead in global mining, pointing at areas from the equipment supplies sector to bank financing and legal services and infrastructure as places where government and companies can work together to sharpen the nation’s edge.
The Canadian mining industry is among the world’s biggest, contributing $35.6­ billion to gross domestic product in 2011. That same year mining exports were valued at $102 ­billion, more than 20% of the national total. The Toronto Stock Exchange is the global capital for mining equity and British Columbia has the largest concentration of mining exploration firms anywhere.
mining  competitiveness_of_nations  Canada  Canadian  tax_codes  TMX  capital_markets  geology  engineering  legal  epicenters  hyper-concentrations 
january 2013 by jerryking
Risk? Bring it on, Canadian miners say - The Globe and Mail
DOUGLAS MASON

Special to The Globe and Mail

Published Thursday, Nov. 22 2012

There are few business sectors where Canada can claim global dominance, but as a centre for mining development, it is an industry leader....No other place has the same concentration and depth of services and financial market sophistication to support mining finance and development.

How does Canada do this? According to Kevan Cowan, president of TSX Markets, Canadians have a long history of participating in early-stage mining investments and a “whole ecosystem” has developed to support the industry.

“We have a tremendous network of industry players. Our legal services are the best expertise in this sector worldwide, together with a huge pool of geologists, engineers and mining entrepreneurs, as well as sophisticated capital markets for mining finance. We are a world ahead of our competitors.”
Canada  Canadian  mining  risk-taking  TSX  entrepreneurship  DRC  Banro  early-stage  ecosystems  capital_markets  geology  engineering  legal  TMX  epicenters  hyper-concentrations 
december 2012 by jerryking
THE GALLEON TRIAL U.S. Attorney Sends a Message to Wall Street
MAY 12, 2011 | NYT | BY BENJAMIN WEISER AND PETER LATTMAN. In
21 months as United States attorney, Preet Bharara has had a major
impact on corporate crime.
Every few days during the trial of Raj Rajaratnam, the Galleon Group’s
co-founder, Preet Bharara, the United States attorney for the Southern
District of New York, would quietly enter the courtroom and take a seat
in the last row of the gallery.

From that unassuming vantage point, Mr. Bharara watched his colleagues
try to persuade a jury to convict the former hedge fund titan of
securities fraud and conspiracy.

The consistent presence of Mr. Bharara at the largest insider trading
case in a generation — and the office’s resounding victory on Wednesday —
signaled that the chief federal prosecutor in Manhattan was back as the
sheriff of Wall Street.
legal  legal_system  profile  Preet_Bharara  insider_trading  prosecutors  hedge_funds  Raj_Rajaratnam  Wall_Street 
may 2011 by jerryking
A Lawyer's Advice on Business Partnerships
September 10, 2010 | BusinessWeek | By Karen E. Klein
partnerships  legal  howto 
september 2010 by jerryking
What Any Goldman Settlement Might Entail - DealBook/White Collar Watch Blog - NYTimes.com
May 6, 2010 | NYT | by Peter J. Henning who's working on a
book, “The Prosecution and Defense of Public Corruption: The Law &
Legal Strategies,” by Oxford Univ. Press. What might it take for GS to
resolve its various lawsuits & inquiries? Threats? 3-fold: (1) SEC's
lawsuit; (2) a slew of private shareholder suits that largely piggyback
the S.E.C. claims; (3) a DoJ investigation. The SEC’s fraud case
presents the most immediate threat to GS, DoJ investigation could have
the greatest impact if it develops into a full-blown threat of
prosecution, while the private suits are of less importance as they pose
little if any threat to the GS’s continuing operations. For the SEC:
($=monetary penalties), appt. of an outside monitor to oversee GS’s
compliance with the terms of the settlement, require GS to appoint a
different person as chair; For the DoJ --difficult for GS to negotiate
some type of resolution; For Private Litigants there's whether the GS
board breached its fiduciary duty.
anticipating  books  corruption  Department_of_Justice  financial_penalties  Goldman_Sachs  legal  legal_strategies  SEC  think_threes  white-collar  white-collar_crime 
may 2010 by jerryking
The Path to Growth - WSJ.com
MARCH 3, 2007 | Wall Street Journal | By NORMAN T. SHEEHAN
& GANESH VAIDYANATHAN. Even the most successful business models
erode over time making adaptability the key to thriving under tough
conditions. To avoid getting stuck in a rut, companies must constantly
adapt business models to threats and opportunities. While most managers
consider a host of conventional approaches, there's another way to
approach the problem: Look at value-creation strategies. Here are three
such strategies:
* Industrial efficiency, which creates value by producing
standardized offerings at low cost. Manufacturers and fast-food
restaurants rely on this approach.
* Network services, which creates value by connecting clients to
other people or other parts of the network. Telcos, delivery services
and Internet middlemen such as eBay use this method.
* Knowledge intensive, which creates value by applying customized
expertise to clients' problems. Law firms and medical practices are
prime examples.
business_models  delivery_networks  eBay  efficiencies  expertise  growth  industrial-strength  inequality_of_information  industry_expertise  knowledge_intensive  law_firms  legal  low-cost  middlemen  networks  orchestration  strategies  taxonomy  value_creation 
february 2010 by jerryking
Court Opening Prompts Question About Whether Gender Matters - WSJ.com
MAY 14, 2009 | Wall Street Journal | by JENNIFER S. FORSYTH.

Should minority (i.e. racial, gender, disabled) U.S. Supreme Court
justices see themselves as needing to represent the views of particular
groups, or as acting as an umpire who remains neutral about who wins and
loses?
U.S._Supreme_Court  nominees  disadvantages  law  legal  gender_gap  gender_relations  judges 
may 2009 by jerryking

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