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Talent Advisory Board's Research Shows Emotional Intelligence Vital for Diversity and Inclusion

September 24, 2014

Fenwick & West managing partner Kate Fritz was featured in a Talent Advisory Board (TAB) press release regarding a study it conducted heralding emotional intelligence (EQ) as a key factor in enabling Silicon Valley law firms to successfully promote diverse and under-represented minorities to senior levels.

Diverse Silicon Valley Attorneys Drive Innovation Through Emotional Intelligence was the fifth annual research study conducted by TAB, an independent diversity and inclusion research firm.

Fenwick, a co-sponsor of the study, helped select the five Silicon Valley tech company in-house legal departments represented, which were chosen for collectively surpassing industry benchmarks for attorney diversity vis a vis gender, sexual orientation and race. The companies were Hewlett-Packard, Intuit, SolarCity, ZELTIQ and Zynga.

Said Fritz, “We are so privileged to work with our clients on this list because we can learn so much from their success in cultivating a more diverse and inclusive in-house legal team. By sharing best practices, we can work together to increase diversity for the greater good of our respective businesses and the legal profession.”

The research found that successful women and minorities in senior positions scored high in self-awareness, motivation, empathy and other EQ qualities essential to serving business clients, working with colleagues and managing other attorneys effectively.

Citing the tangible benefits such practices produce, Fritz added, “Our experience is that greater diversity among both the in-house team and outside counsel increases collaboration and enables us to form even stronger relationships and ultimately deliver better counsel and results.”