Sidley is dedicated to cultivating a culture of career-long learning while making considerable investments in the future of our associates. In support of this commitment, we launched Built to Lead, the firm’s new associate development program. This leadership and executive development model is uniquely designed to help our associates become world-class lawyers with greater business acumen and boardroom prowess. No matter where their careers may lead — whether ascending to partnership at Sidley, moving to an in-house or public service role, or pursuing another path — our associates will leave the program better prepared to succeed as the next generation of legal, business, and civic leaders.
Elite Professional Development
As part of the program, Sidley associates have the opportunity to participate in a number of professional development and enrichment initiatives beginning in their fourth year of practice, including:
- External executive education programs at top global business schools, such as Columbia Business School and Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management
- Two internal executive leadership academies focused on business, client, and professional skills
- Hands-on group service projects with select nonprofit legal and community organizations — including bar associations, veterans organizations, hospitals, food pantries, shelters, or faith-based service organizations — plus civic leadership training
- Individual coaching with external career and business development coaches
The Built to Lead initiative is an expansion of Sidley’s award-winning professional development program, which has been recognized as “Learning Elite” by Chief Learning Officer magazine every year since 2011. We are the first law firm to achieve this distinction, and the law firm with the most honors.
A New Approach to Associate Development
The Built to Lead model recognizes the increasing levels of responsibility that associates take on at each stage of their careers. The program provides new career milestones, including promotions with enhanced titles at the start of an associate’s fourth and seventh year of practice — Managing Associate and Senior Managing Associate, respectively — as well as development opportunities tailored to complement the specific skills that an associate needs to build long-term professional success.