Today’s headline from UK’s The Lawyer summed it nicely, ‘Reed Smith launches women’s career forum and sacks female blogger.’

Reed Smith fired Denise Howell, a leading blogger, IP lawyer, and mother last week. The firm has been getting crucified in Internet discussion since then. Comments include:

Read between the lines of what Denise posted on her blog about being a mother and a lawyer in a large law firm.

…[F]irms still have a long way to go before being “flexible and creative” transcends the realm of sound bite and recruiting/retention pitch, and enters that of core value.

Reed Smith’s response to the firing’s negative reaction, per the The Lawyer article:

  • Reed Smith spokesperson: ‘Her departure had nothing to do with blogging or being a mother.’
  • Firm’s launch of its Women’s Career Advancement Workshop in the UK.
  • Reed Smith chairman Greg Jordan: ‘Reed Smith is committed to the advancement of our women lawyers.’

The best way for Reed Smith to repair this damage to its reputation is to launch a blog. Ironic.

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