Smart Collaboration | How Law Firms Can Increase Revenues, Grow Client Loyalty, and Improve Diversity

Dr. Heidi Gardner is the Co-founder of Gardner & Co, a research and advisory firm that helps clients across professional services, industry, government, and nonprofit drive change through smarter collaboration. In addition to this, Dr. Gardner is a Distinguished Fellow at Harvard Law School and a Faculty Chair of the school’s Accelerated Leadership Program and Sector Leadership Masterclass. She was previously a professor of Organizational Behavior and the Assistant Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School.

Dr. Gardner is also the author of multiple books and academic articles, including the best-seller, Smart Collaboration. She has worked on four continents and has served as a Fullbright Fellow, the Engagement Manager for McKinsey & Company, and more.


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Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • Dr. Heidi Gardner defines smart collaboration and explains why she started researching the subject
  • How Dr. Gardner collected and measured data for her research
  • One of the best examples of smart collaboration in the legal field: industry groups
  • Dr. Gardner shares the positive outcomes that lawyers and law firms can expect from smart collaboration
  • Why you should stop cross-selling to your clients — and what you can do instead
  • The key to cultivating an inclusive culture and retaining valuable employees
  • What are some of the barriers to entry for smart collaboration?
  • Dr. Gardner’s tips for becoming more collaborative in 2021 and beyond
  • Dr. Gardner explains the importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion

In this episode…

How can lawyers improve their collaboration skills, especially when working in different sectors of law? And, what are the benefits of working more collaboratively in 2021 and beyond? Ask Dr. Heidi Gardner, a renowned expert on smart collaboration.

Dr. Heidi Gardner has spent years researching smart collaboration and how it relates to lawyers. She discovered that by collaborating more intentionally and deliberately, lawyers and law firms can reap a number of rewards — from financial to cultural. With her advisory firm Gardner & Co, Dr. Gardner helps firms achieve success through smart collaboration, and now she’s here to share her tips with you.

On this jam-packed episode of The Lawyer’s Edge, Elise Holtzman sits down with Dr. Heidi Gardner, the Co-founder of Gardner & Co, to talk about everything you need to know about smart collaboration. They discuss Dr. Gardner’s tips for building an inclusive workplace culture, why firms should implement industry groups, and how to utilize smart collaboration to drive change and achieve success today. Stay tuned!

Resources Mentioned in this episode

Sponsor for this episode…

This episode is brought to you by The Lawyer’s Edge, a firm based in the New York metropolitan area founded by Elise Holtzman in 2008 to help lawyers become skilled business developers and leaders so that they can grow their practices, retain top talent, and step confidently into leadership roles.

The firm offers customized coaching, consulting, and training programs such as their signature business development program, Lawyers Making Rain.

Now more than ever, it’s not enough to just do good work and hope your law firm will thrive. And no matter how smart and hard-working you are, it can be time-consuming and overwhelming to figure it all out by yourself.

To learn more about how we help lawyers become rainmakers and leaders, visit or email us at

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