A message from our Co-Chief Executives
Co-CEOs Lee Ranson and Mark Wasserman reflect on the past, present and future of our responsible business strategy
We are committed to embedding responsible business practices throughout our global operations, working across four key areas of focus.
We empower our people by creating a values-led, diverse and inclusive culture with wellbeing at its heart and invest in everyone’s future through learning and development.
We make a positive impact on the communities in which we live and work through our pro bono, volunteer and charitable activities, using our talents and time for the benefit of others.
We are committed to protecting our planet by reducing our environmental impact and promoting the conservation of natural resources.
Governance & Ethics
We safeguard the highest levels of professional standards and integrity through our governance structures and commitment to ethical business practices.
Helping our clients, our people and our communities to thrive
How we keep our purpose and values at the heart of our responsible business strategy.
New initiatives and commitments
Key global projects launching.
Launch a global inclusion week program
Develop a global inclusion index target to measure our progress
Monitor our ‘Say Gap’ through a formal program to address any gender or ethnicity imbalances in our external spokespeople
Create a formal wellbeing principles program to guide our interactions with our clients, our people and our communities
Develop a globally aligned character statement of intent for supporting our communities
Increase our globally aligned pro bono projects and investments in access to justice
Form a five-year global charity partnership aligned with our purpose and values
Launch a global employee engagement platform where all of our people can participate in and act on social impact activities, access grants and charitable giving, and monitor their environmental impact
Develop further our greenhouse gas reduction plan to achieve Net Zero by 2050 or sooner
Host a Green Summit to engage, empower and educate our people
Explore opportunities to protect, preserve and promote biodiversity
Create alliances to collaborate and share ideas around climate change mitigation
Governance & Ethics
Develop a Global Ethical Code of Conduct, articulating the high-level principles that guide the behavior of our people globally
Align global policies where possible, addressing anti-money laundering, sanctions compliance and anti-bribery and corruption among others
Align and develop global risk training where possible, based on the themes included in the Ethical Code of Conduct
Our responsible business journey: key dates and milestones
Eversheds Sutherland goes live
February saw the launch of Eversheds Sutherland, created by the combination of Eversheds and Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP, a top 10 firm in the UK rankings and top 40 in the US. Reaction to the announcement by clients, our people and the media was overwhelmingly positive about the bright future ahead for the firm.
Celebrated International Women’s Day for the first time as Eversheds Sutherland
One month into the combination, we celebrated International Women’s Day with the publication of our ‘Be Bold For Change’ magazine profiling female colleagues from across the firm. We have celebrated International Women’s Day together each year since.
2020 strategy is launched
Our Co-CEOs launched the firm’s new strategy at the Partner Conference in London in June, with a vision to be a leading global law firm by 2020 with a focus on the quality of our clients, the work that we do and our people. Global coverage, smart growth, client experience, quality and innovation and, in particular, the need to protect and nurture our culture were announced as the key pillars of the strategy.
We established the Global Board and the Global Executive Management Team to oversee and implement the firm’s global strategy. A global conflicts process and protocols were established, along with a single conflicts system and Global Conflicts Committee. A global framework to support client engagements across multiple jurisdictions was rolled out and a Global Risk Committee was established to drive the firm’s governance, compliance and ethics agenda forward.
Launched ‘Making a Difference’ video to celebrate our pro bono, community and volunteering programs
One year into the combination we celebrated our fantastic pro bono and community work across the firm with our ‘Making a difference’ video. The video was debuted at the Partner Conference in New York and received a standing ovation!
Celebrated Global Running Day in support of WaterAid
In June, 822 people across the firm put on their Eversheds Sutherland apparel and ran/walked/biked/wheeled a total of 5,218km to raise vital funds for WaterAid, including our Co-CEOs who ran with the Moscow office team during a visit to Russia. Global Running Day is now a firm fixture in our calendar, raising money for WaterAid to help fund access to clean water, reliable toilets and good hygiene for living a dignified and healthy life.
Take a trip down memory lane with our video highlights.
Launched Development Plus
Development Plus is a global program designed to bring together our female talent in all locations, with the intention to provide support, networking opportunities, professional developmental interventions and group coaching with senior female leaders from across our business.
Purpose and values launched
Helping our people, our clients and our communities to thrive – in February we launched our global purpose and values and celebrated across all our worldwide offices. We asked our people across the world what our purpose and values meant to them and created a video of their thoughts, making a short film to bring it to life.
Global Amicus pro bono project launched
We are incredibly proud to partner with Amicus, the Florida International University (FIU) Law Clinic and the Florida Center for Capital Representation (FCCR) to monitor death penalty activity in Florida’s 11th and 4th circuits to better support capital defenders. This project involves more than 120 of our colleagues from the US, UK, Middle East, and Germany. In addition, our innovation and knowledge services professionals worked with partners at Fastcase and Georgia State University to develop a new technology tool to better search and analyze court records.
Celebrated International Men’s Day
In November we supported International Men’s Day #BalanceForBetter campaign with a focus on highlighting the need for a gender balanced world, the importance of all genders working together to achieve gender equality, and to shine a light on men’s health and wellbeing. International Men’s Day is now part of our global annual calendar of significant dates to mark.
Strategy 2023 launched
Powered by our purpose. Guided by our vision. Driven by change – building on the ambition to be a leading global law firm by 2020, our 2023 vision puts our purpose and values at its heart with the commitment to being a responsible business being a key part of the new strategy.
First Step Up to the Plate global charity appeal
In December 56 of our offices walked, ran or wheeled 10k to raise much needed funds for local foodbanks. Everyone was invited to ‘Step up to the plate’ and donate £10/$10/€10 or the equivalent, raising over $80,000 globally which was distributed in time for the holiday season.
First global Diversity & Inclusion brochure launched
Making a world of difference – our global approach to diversity & inclusion was launched, setting out the six pillars of our strategy which guide our strategic planning focusing on local priorities, embracing intersectionality and leveraging difference to ensure that everyone has a platform to thrive.
First global Corporate Responsibility and Pro Bono report launched
Deeply engrained in our culture is a recognition that we have a responsibility to use our skills and resources for the greater good of the communities in which we live and work. Marking the continued success of our global corporate responsibility and pro bono commitments, we published our first report to showcase our initiatives and some of the many individuals who support these important activities.
Responsible Business strategy launched
We brought together a team to assess our global responsible business activities, set goals for the future, and implement and measure success moving forward. To make this strategy transparent and keep up to date on the the firm’s progress, our Responsible Business microsite went live and was launched to the business by our Co-CEOs.
Joined the UN Global Compact as a participant
We became a participant in the UN Global Compact as a public pledge of our commitment to being a responsible business, supporting the ten principles and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the Compact. Each year we have an obligation to report on our progress to the Compact, ensuring both accountability and transparency.
Committed to Net Zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050
As part of our environmental sustainability strategy, we committed to reducing our avoidable greenhouse gas emissions at pace and to being Net Zero by 2050 or sooner. The business is taking a science-based approach to reduction targets, in line with best practice.
First Global Engagement Survey launched
In January we invited everyone in the firm to share their views about working at Eversheds Sutherland in our first global engagement survey. We had a very high response rate with 70% of people taking part. Putting our purpose at the heart of our responsible business strategy is already resonating with our people, with 80% saying they believe the firm is purpose-led and 79% of people believe the firm is inclusive.
Global charity commitment to be launched
We are seeking a new, global charity partner to support across the firm and will be inviting our colleagues to vote on a short-list of organizations. This charity will be in addition to our existing and long-standing charitable partnerships within the business.
Global employee engagement and action platform to be launched
We will invest in a platform which will allow everyone to support our responsible business strategy through a range of activities such as individual giving, campaigns, challenges and requests for donations from the firm.
Launching the ‘Say Gap’ program
To address gender and ethnicity disparity in our external spokespeople for media relations and social media, we are launching our data-driven ‘say gap’ program. This aims to ensure we actively seek out and promote more voices from across the firm and that those voices are as diverse as the firm is and aspires to be.
Global Inclusion Week to be launched
We want to celebrate inclusion and difference across the firm by having a week of events and celebrations, embracing what inclusion means to each of us and engaging everyone in the conversation.
Global Ethical Code of Conduct to be launched
We will develop and launch a Global Ethical Code of Conduct which sets out the high-level principles that guide the behavior of all our people globally, rooted in our purpose and our values.
First Communication on Progress to the UN to be submitted
In May we will be required to submit our first Communication on Progress (CoP) to the UN Global Compact. This is an annual requirement for all participants in the Compact and we will set out our targets and achievements from the previous 12 months.
Global Inclusion Target to be launched
We will measure our progress in creating a more inclusive culture and community through an Inclusion Target. Building on the data from the 2021 Global Engagement Survey, we will ask our people each year about how inclusive the firm is and will set a target to increase this year-on-year.
Global ‘Green Team’ to be launched
We will launch a global Green Team to support the embedding of our sustainability strategy across the firm. This will be a voluntary, global team of colleagues who are actively engaged in advancing our environmental strategy.
Global Risk and Ethics Training Rollout
We will launch a global training program of aligned risk and ethics topics based on the themes of our new Ethical Code of Conduct and new common policies such as anti-corruption and anti-money laundering.
Global wellbeing principles to be launched
We will work with our clients and our people to explore adjustments, however small, to working practices to enhance the experience for all, being mindful towards one another at all times.
Meet the team
Meet the individuals helping us achieve our goals.
Governance & Ethics
Underpinning all we do
We are proud to be a participant in the UN Global Compact and to support the ten principles and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the Compact. This is a public pledge of our commitment to being a responsible business and will help us to evaluate our progress through annual reporting to the UN.
Responsible Business is everyone’s business
For the greatest global impact, we all need to work together and play our part to achieve our goals. Everyone has the ability to positively contribute to this agenda and we welcome your thoughts, feedback and involvement. Please get in touch with any comments or questions.