Dentons aims for ‘talent titan’ label

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Dentons aims for ‘talent titan’ label

Joe Andrew and Elliott Portnoy and Jay Commolly

Dentons has launched a new talent program for its staff, having perceived a need to rethink how talent is developed within professional services and law firms.

NextTalent, announced at the 2019 Dentons partner meeting, will utilise the firm’s focus on innovation alongside its Nextlaw Labs to “enable every lawyer and professional in the firm to develop and unlock human potential in the digital era”, while supporting its staff’s career goals.

NextTalent will leverage insight from neuroscience, behavioural economics, and new technology that is powering the fourth industrial revolution using a ‘skunkworks’ mindset, according to Dentons.

The skunkworks strategy will see the firm gather best practices across the firm in order to share knowledge, experiment and test solutions worldwide, it was explained.

Supporting individual development, the application of behavioural research, the leveraging of leading programs and the bringing in of new support and development opportunities are just some of the ways NextTalent is different to other talent programs, Dentons outlined.

“Leadership, team development, mindfulness, emotional intelligence and resilience” are at NextTalent’s core, a statement said.


For the firm’s global chairman, Joe Andrew, “the fourth industrial revolution is connecting digitization, neuroscience, and human behavioural insights”.

He said NextTalent recognises that “to assist people to meet their professional aspirations it is more important to develop our talent than it is the tools our talent uses”.

Global CEO Elliott Portnoy added that “development of talent across the firm is critical to our success”.

“NextTalent will be a personalised and data-driven approach which will help us become the ‘talent titan’ in the same way we have been recognized as a ‘technology titan’,” he considered.

Mr Portnoy noted Dentons has already implemented a number of leading talent development approaches, with NextTalent building on these, to enable “leading practices to be shared across the firm, and developing additional, innovative, talent-enriching solutions to enable people to reach professional goals in a leading firm”.

Meanwhile, the firm’s global chief talent officer Jay Connolly said that “by leveraging Dentons’ scale, we are able to accelerate our ability to develop talent in a tailored way, in a profession which is increasingly characterised as both stressful and challenging”.

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