Course Description


This course teaches much needed growth and competitive skills. I would be delighted to assist you develop or improve them.

I cannot think of a more important or timely set of skills that all lawyers competing in the 21C need to master!..have a look at the 10 minute introductory video to see what I cover. Its practical,useful and would enable you to introduce an Innovation Agenda from conception to completion.

Lean Innovation for Lawyers is a course designed and presented by solicitor and former international managing partner Duncan Hart LLB MBA. It teaches the substance of the topics set out in his recent book 'Lean Innovation for Lawyers' published by Managing Partner Magazine (London).

Duncan brings to the course examples and learnings from his experience as a managing partner of both small local and multi-national firms involved in developing innovation based initiatives in differing practice groups and countries. To that experience is added his wide ranging expertise as a management consultant, lecturer, author and strategist over the past 10 years in the UK, US and Australia as well as Asia.

The course assumes that you are a firm or individual anxious to explore, introduce and then exploit innovation opportunities in respect of the markets and clients you service or aspire to serve.

He divides the course into 3 sections:

  • Thinking (preparing the ground),
  • Analysis (identifying and qualifying appropriate opportunities) and
  • Action (testing your ideas,designing the service and managing and executing your agenda).

It is designed to be a practical guide to developing and delivering an innovation agenda within a firm or as a guide to developing a 'new law' practice. Numerous examples across multiple practice areas are referenced and described from firms around the world.

Duncan also brings to the course many insights and learnings from Silicon Valley and the methodologies and tools used by both new and established firms. The 'lean approach' in particular is central to the structure of the course which addresses the issue of not only finding appropriate opportunities but also developing and delivering those solutions quickly to market.

Internal organisational and 'political' issues peculiar to law firms are also covered with the roles of innovation teams and oversight committees receiving particular attention.

In all there are some 3 hours of videos divided into 15 to 20 minute segments. All the key diagrams, examples and flow charts contained in Duncan's book are provided for easy reference. It is not necessary however to buy the book to complete the course.

He is also available for SKYPE consultations arising from the course content or to assist you in your innovation project.

If you have any questions or concerns about the course please feel free to contact me at +61 414562267 or at or via my website at – my LinkedIn profile is at

Melbourne 2017

Barrister & Solicitor Consultant to Professional Service Firms

Duncan Hart LLB MBA

Duncan spent more than a decade as managing partner of a ten-partner legal practice and three years as Regional Managing Director of one of Australia’s largest law firms with over 160 partners. He has particular expertise in the strategic management issues facing firms, the markets in which they operate and the development of their human and intellectual capital. Duncan practised as a barrister and solicitor principally in the area of intellectual property for more than 25 years before opening his own consultancy in 2002. In his practice as a consultant he has advised all of the major professional groups as well as broader industry sectors and continues to holds a current practising certificate in Victoria. He is a regular traveler to SE Asia and China as well as the Middle East. He is a director of several companies involved in supporting the export of services to those regions and the commercialisation of their intellectual property. Duncan’s educational background includes Legal (LLB) and Master of Business Administration (MBA) degrees. He has lived and worked in both the US and UK providing management consulting and legal advice. He is based in Melbourne. He is the author of ‘The Strategic Law Firm’ and 'Lean Innovation for Lawyers' and editor of ‘Management of the Australian Law Firm’, and a regular speaker at conferences dealing with leadership, strategy and marketing issues. (On weekends however, he can be found sailing at the Royal Brighton Yacht Club on his aged wooden yacht, HAIKU or plotting his next excursion on the canals and waterways of Europe).

Course curriculum

  • 2

    Chapter 1 - Innovation 'Thinking' - Preparing the ground

    • Chapter 1.1 Innovation Thinking - What is innovation, pressures to innovate, putting supporting structures and processes in place, developing a strategic approach,some current examples

    • Chapter 1.2 Innovation Thinking - The board's role, introducing an Innovation Committee and creating an Innovation Agenda

    • PDF download - Multiple Example Innovations in UK.US and Australia

  • 3

    Chapter 2 - Innovation Analysis - How to decide where to focus your Innovation Agenda using business model analysis and the Innovation Target

    • Chapter 2 - Analysis - Introduction to the Analysis process - building a service the market needs

    • Chapter 2.1 Innovation Analysis - First - Understanding your own business model, the firm's current strategy, opportunities and capabilities

    • Chapter 2.2 Innovation Analysis - Then, Apply business model analysis to clients to uncover client needs, build a mix of initiatives and introducing the 'Innovation Target' to help focus your efforts

    • Chapter 2.4 Innovation Analysis - Looking wider to political, economic, social, technological environmental and legal trends

    • PDF download - Business Model Graphic Osterwalder

    • PDF download - Common Law Firm Business Model graphic

    • PDF download - Example Innovation Table with business model impacts (7 pages)

    • PDF download - Innovation Proposal Template (3 pages)

    • PDF download - Innovation Target graphic

    • PDF download - PESTEL trend examples

  • 4

    Chapter 3 - Innovation Action - Creating, testing and delivering innovation services

    • Chapter 3.1 - Innovation Action - Introducing the Lean Innovation approach and the stage-gate process to manage innovation initiatives

    • Chapter 3.2 - Innovation Action - The Stage Gate process in detail and qualifying and progressing initiatives in a 'lean' fashion

    • Chapter 3.3 - Innovation Action - Stage Gate 1 - the Initial Assessment and the role of Innovation Teams and the Innovation Committee preparing for Stage Gate 2

    • Chapter 3.4 - Stage Gate 2 - Identifying and testing key assumptions with current examples, the client discovery process

    • Chapter 3.5 - Innovation Action - Stage Gate 2 cont. preparing for Stage Gate 3

    • Chapter 3.6 - Innovation Action - Stage Gate 3 - Delivery and cost modelling, budget. timing and launch plan and considering competitor responses, preparing for Stage Gates 4 and 5

    • Chapter 3.7- Innovation Action - Stage Gates 4 and 5 - Launch process and budget, setting post launch metrics and evaluation process, pricing, post launch review including 'pivot' and 'crash and burn' options

    • PDF download - Stage Gate 1 graphic

    • PDF download - Stage Gate 2 graphic

    • PDF download - Stage Gate 3 graphic

    • PDF download - Stage Gate 3 graphic

    • PDF download - Stage Gate 4 and 5 graphic

    • PDF download - Post Launch Success Measures

    • PDF download - Major Gates Summary

    • PDF download - Multi - Stage Model

  • 5

    Chapter 4 - The Innovation Committee

    • Chapter 4 - The Innovation Committee - Role and responsibilities, composition, budget, managing a portfolio and educative role

    • PDF download - Support Options for Innovation Teams