INCLUSIVITY IN PRACTICE BY TOKYO 2020’s DEBUTANT … SKATE

Learnings for lawyers from the sensational summer of sport 2021.


Did you know, yesterday (21 June) was International Skateboarding Day?


In 2016 skate was given its invitation to join 1 of the 33 sports and 4 of the 339 events that will fill our screens between 23 July and 8 August followed by the even more mesmerising Paralympic games from 24 August to 5 September.


The journey to becoming an Olympic sport has not be straight forward, not least of which because of the cultural values of skate versus the institute that is the #IOC. The culture of skate continues to occupy values entrenched in being non-institutional, non-conformist and free.


The heart of the debate came from the answer to the question:

“does it [being part of the Olympics] push skating away from its core fundamentals”


Read more about the journey here: https://theberrics.com/today-skateboarding-became-an-olympic-sport-080316


The inclusion of skate into the Olympics drew out opposing opinions within the skate community which could very well have split the skate community (we’ve seen other sports split for lesser things), but they took a different approach.


You can read, learn and share the learnings for lawyers from this story in this blog:


The skate culture is counter-cultural even in dealing with differences.

The counter-cultural approach liberated skaters to celebrate each other without diminishing those who chose differently to their preference. They skated through potentially polarising differences and instead chose to share the excitement of those who chose to go the Olympic route even if they would have preferred skate to stay out of the remit of the Olympics.

No drama. No conflict. Just skate.

“Even if some skateboarders feel like this decision has been taken out of our hands, we have to acknowledge the fact we’ve been in charge of the trajectory of skating since its inception.”

Zane Foley writing for @TheBerrics (a skate park in L.A. and title of a digital skate magazine created by Steve Berra and Eric Kosten)

LEARNINGS FOR LAWYERS…

Skate has demonstrated 2 very powerful approaches that would significantly improve the experience lawyers and their stakeholders have of the law:


Law struggles to find a healthy response to differences and change. e.g. did you know that in-house lawyers are often seen as “not real lawyers” compared with private practice lawyers? The fact is, both do very different roles - one has a heavier weighting towards more specialist expertise and the other is about enabling clients to safely achieve their goals (even within these two career routes people shine in diverse and unique ways). Over the last decade we’ve seen an accelerated growth of alternative ways to be a lawyer, with different formats for freelance consultants as well as legal tech lawyers (lawyers creating the tech enabled legal solutions) amongst others. In an increasingly diverse profession, isn’t it time we shifted our mindset away from pointless insular competition and shifted our energies to combatting a common enemy?


Imagine if we refocused our energies to celebrate others (even when your opinions differ and social media’s not looking) and together, do what we can to put ourselves in a better position to improve the experience of law by its stakeholders (and that includes you too)?


Celebrate others even those whose opinions differ to yours


Speaking of doing what we can… when you’re in a structure that’s bigger than you and is doing something that’s not what you’re preference might be, instead of feeding internalised discontent, take charge, recognise your responsibility to do what you can with what you've got to influence how you want the future to be.


Do what you can with with you've got to influence how you want the future to be.


p.s. a final reminder from the world of skate from TeamGB’s skate prodigy, Sky Brown:


“it’s ok to fall sometimes... Just get back up and push harder.”


🔥 Inspired by sport, legal team and career development designed for lawyers by lawyers. Give yourself a head start (or a kickstart) by booking a complimentary call: https://bit.ly/3fW5vyi


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