Linda Johnston, Executive Director for People & Development, King & Wood Mallesons

No one wants their organisation to become a headline about employee fatigue and unsafe work practices, but that’s exactly what happened to Linda Johnston, Executive Director for People & Development at global law firm King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) in late 2018.

In the spotlight for employee fatigue – how law firm King & Wood Mallesons are shifting the culture on leadership and wellbeing

In the wake of the Australian Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry, and the immense workload that flowed from this, KWM faced an investigation by Worksafe Victoria, following an employee complaint.

“It was the perfect storm for KWM, and many other law firms… the Royal Commission meant we had really tight deadlines that we had to deliver on – the demands in terms of volume of work to be processed in a short space of time were quite frankly, unprecedented.

“After the Worksafe notice arrived in August 2018, the firm had to go through a number of steps to satisfy the regulator’s concerns about hours worked at the firm. We were advised to get our shop in order basically, and… it was a real gift.  It really gave us permission to take a good look at ourselves, and galvanize the partnership around what was happening.”

Linda Johnston, Executive Director for People & Development, King & Wood Mallesons

Listen to Linda’s conversation with Karen Gillespie, co-author of the GLWS

What led to this situation and how KWM have responded makes for a fascinating case study, and one from which lessons abound for other professional services firms – and, indeed, any organisation working to embed a wellbeing strategy and create a sustainable high-performance culture.

We’re thrilled that GLWS is making a contribution to King & Wood Mallesons, and helping organisations, large and small, implement workplace wellbeing strategies that support everyone to live and work at their best.

“There are absolutely lots and lots of things in the system that we can look at, and you can be very strategic about how you do that, but fundamentally behaviour changes individual by individual. And so, you have to do the work individual by individual in order to affect that change”

Linda Johnston, Executive Director for People & Development, King & Wood Mallesons