In Episode 25, we talk to New York Times Senior Economics Correspondent Neil Irwin about his book, How to Win in a Winner-Take-All World: The Definitive Guide to Adapting and Succeeding in High-Performance Careers.

To write the book, Neil interviewed successful employees with companies in various industries–from Microsoft to a company running popular New York City eateries.  He wanted to understand what made these people successful in the modern economy–an economy driven by automation, “gig” jobs and dominated by “winner take all” companies (companies that dominate an industry like Google, Facebook and Walmart).

Neil figured out that successful professionals are often “glue people.” People who can communicate across varying job types and roles. Glue people are effective communicators because they are flexible, held varying types of positions in their career and understand the economics of their company.

What does this have to do with legal tech and legal innovation? Quite a bit.

The legal industry is not immune to economic changes affecting other industries. Technology and automation are changing the way lawyers work. To be a successful lawyer nowadays, it takes exposure and skills outside traditional lawyering (like understanding project management and being tech savvy–or, being a “unicorn lawyer”).

In his book,  Neil ultimately concludes that for people adopting the right mindset, economic changes impacting the modern career path are positive. Those that are flexible, willing to make the effort to stay ahead of industry trends and who also understand what really drives business to their organizations are poised to succeed.

Learn more about Neil.

Things We Talk About in This Episode

Glue People

Eric Schmidt’s take on Glue People

Vilfredo Pareto

Pareto Optimal

Laszlo Bock 

Episode Credits

Editing and Production: Grant Blackstock

Theme Music: Home Base (Instrumental Version) by TA2MI

 

Like what you heard or read? Sign up below for alerts about new episodes.