Exploring female lawyers' competence in Ghanaian law firms: clients' perspective



Quartey SH, Akuffo-Kwapong B & Etone D (2021) Exploring female lawyers' competence in Ghanaian law firms: clients' perspective. International Journal of the Legal Profession.

This paper aims to explore how clients perceive the competence of female lawyers in Ghanaian law firms. As an exploratory qualitative study, thematic analytic approach was used to analyse the interview data gathered from 15 clients of law firms. The findings reveal that clients consider the gender of lawyers when making hiring decisions and determining competence. The findings also suggest that clients consider legal expertise, professionalism, knowledgeability, gender attributes, and social interaction as critical determinants of female lawyers’ competence in law firms. We suggest that managers of law firms should understand and consider the role of clients in competence development. Managers of law firms could also manage gender-based competence biases of clients and improve practice management by implementing effective gender policies and client - lawyer relationship management strategies. The wider implication for the gender schema theory is that gender schemas of clients affect competency measurement and assessment. The current competence-based theorisations in management science could consider client perspective.

Competence; clients’ perception; female lawyers; law firms; Ghana

Output Status: Forthcoming/Available Online

International Journal of the Legal Profession

StatusIn Press
Publication date online07/01/2021
Date accepted by journal09/12/2020

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Dr Damian Etone

Dr Damian Etone

Senior Lecturer, Law

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