The Future of Canadian Law Firms Requires Inclusion

This post was originally published on the CBA Legal Futures Initiative website, and is authored by Omar Ha-Redeye, a lawyer with Fleet Street Law, a part-time professor at Ryerson University and Centennial College, and a blogger here at SLAW.

One aspect of the future which hasn’t received as much attention is the significant demographic shift occurring in Canada.

Darrel Bricker and John Ibbitson, authors of The Big Shift, The Seismic Change in Canadian Politics, Business, and Culture and What It Means for Our Future, spoke at the CBA Legal Conference in Saskatoon recently on how the entire face of Canada is changing. Due to high immigration rates and population growth, the power bases of Canada are shifting west away from Quebec and the Maritimes and is much more diverse than in previous generations.

Dr. Arin Reeves, another plenary speaker and author of The Next IQ: The Next Level of Intelligence for 21st Century Leaders, spoke about how the business leadership of the future will need to properly leverage this diversity through inclusive practices.

Law firms are still struggling with understanding the nature of inclusiveness, and how to transform their organizations to attract the best talent. Law firms still focus on recruitment and expect diverse candidates to fit their culture, rather than the other way around.

Diversity is yet another opportunity for transformation within the legal profession. Are you ready for the future population changes coming to Canada?


  1. Well said, Omar. This is another imperative for our profession. A great opportunity exists at this time to ensure that the legal profession of the future better reflects the diversity of this country today but also for tomorrow. We’re not ready for this, for the most part, but there are pockets of progress that leave me optimistic. For example, I recently learned of the grabLaw initiative , collaborative approach undertaken by a group of large firms in Grand Rapids, Michigan to increase diversity in their local bar and their firms. While it’s early for results to be seen, I’m encouraged by the fact that this effort is bar-supported, focused on enhancing diversity and led by law firm managing partners.