Manager, Professional Development

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Title :

Manager, Professional Development

Location :

Washington, D.C.

Job Summary

Gibson Dunn is a leading global law firm, advising clients on significant transactions and disputes. Our exceptional teams craft and deploy creative legal strategies that are meticulously tailored to every matter, however complex or high-stakes. The firm’s work is distinguished by a unique combination of precision and vision.

Based in Washington, D.C., the Professional Development Manager will lead associate development efforts for four offices, including integration, coaching, mentor programs, and training.  This individual will possess exceptional communication skills, strong judgment and diplomacy, and great initiative, along with experience as an attorney at an elite law firm.  This role will have primary responsibility for the below activities for Gibson Dunn’s Washington, D.C. office and also for the Dallas, Denver and Houston offices.

This role reports to the Chief Professional Development Officer.

Responsibilities include:

  • Coaching: Provide confidential, individualized professional development coaching to associates to help with goal setting, professional challenges, and general brainstorming. Lead group coaching meetings with new associates.
  • New & Lateral Associate Integration: Manage fall and lateral associate on-boarding and integration processes for Washington, D.C. office (e.g., buddy and mentor pairings, orientations). Support new associates in all assigned offices with their integration, including through new joiner check-in calls.
  • Mentoring: Oversee the offices’ formal mentor programs, including: coordinating annual program launches; collaborating with local mentor chairs, practice leads, and Associates Committees; planning and coordinating periodic Mentor Program events; facilitating ongoing mentor group assignments; and creating resources to support mentor goals.
  • Associate Support: Conduct monthly associate check-in calls, assist expecting and new parents with on-ramping, off-ramping, and adjusting to parenthood through the Gibson Dunn Families Program, provide support to attorneys on flex-time schedules, and conduct informal check-ins with other associates.
  • Training: Identify training programs to address evolving associate needs and requests, and work with partners and internal colleagues to develop appropriate content. Work closely with office partners in the orchestration and refinement of annual programs, including general and local departmental training for new associates.
  • Local Office Support: Serve as the Professional Development point person for the offices, including supporting local Associates Committees, Partners-in-Charge, and other attorneys and staff with office programming, event design, coordination and support.
  • Themes/Trends Analysis: Conduct exit interviews with departing associate attorneys. Analyze and report on associate trends arising from exit interviews, Associates Committee meetings, associate check-ins, and industry research.
  • Academies: Assist with curriculum design and general planning of the New Lawyer and Mid-Level Academies.
  • Special Projects: Collaborate with the Chief Professional Development Officer, Global Associate Director of Professional Development, and other department members to implement long-term and/or special global projects. Play a key role in development, launch, maintenance and ongoing evaluation of various firm-wide associate engagement and retention efforts.
  • Management: Provide management, coaching and career development guidance to the East Coast-based Professional Development Coordinator and Professional Development Assistant.


  • Professional demeanor and excellent communication skills paired with a service-oriented attitude.
  • Strong organization skills with a focus on attention to detail, problem solving, and the ability to multitask.
  • Excellent writing, proofreading, and editing skills.  Must be able to tailor written work product to appropriate audience.
  • Demonstrated resourcefulness, creativity, and self-directed behavior.
  • Established project management skills, event planning, and program design experience.  Demonstrated ability to make continued progress on long-term projects.
  • Ability to interact effectively with colleagues at all levels of the Firm, including taking the initiative to meet and maintain positive relationships with attorneys and staff.
  • Integrity to handle sensitive and highly confidential information with utmost care.
  • Ability to identify potential legal issues and concerns and message appropriately to Firm management as necessary or required.
  • Comfort with public speaking.
  • Willingness to travel, as some travel will be required.


  • JD required.
  • 5+ years’ experience as an associate in a global law firm preferred, with a proven track record of involvement in recruiting, mentoring, training and associate programs.
  • Formal training as a coach a plus, but not required.
  • Strong skills in MS Word and PowerPoint.  Demonstrated proficiency in Excel.


Gibson Dunn will consider for employment qualified Applicants with Criminal Histories in a manner consistent with the requirements of local law.

Compensation & Benefits:

The annual compensation range for this position is $170-200k. The salary offered within this range will depend upon qualifications and other operational considerations.

Benefits offered for this position include health care; retirement benefits; paid days off, including sick time, and vacation time; parental leave; basic life insurance; Flexible Spending Accounts; as well as discretionary, performance-based bonuses.

Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP is committed to the principles of equal employment opportunity for all partners, employees and applicants and, in accordance with the applicable federal and state laws, does not discriminate on the basis of sex, race, creed, color, religion, matriculation or political affiliation, national origin, alienage or citizenship status, ancestry, age, marital status or partnership status, family responsibilities, disability, medical condition, personal appearance, genetic information, predisposing genetic characteristics, sexual orientation, military status, status as a victim of domestic violence, stalking and sex offenses, arrest or conviction record, or on any other basis prohibited by law.