Innovation Part 1: What it Is and What it Isn’t

03.20.19 | Posted By: Susan Duncan
With so much buzz about the need for innovation in the legal profession, it can be overwhelming and also very misleading. Many misconstrue that innovation in law firms is all about technology.  It isn’t.  Some of the most fundamental innovation that is occurring has to do with how work is done, why, by whom and Read More

Practice Groups Part 2: Practice Group Leader as Strategist

11.28.18 | Posted By: Susan Duncan
It is surprising how many law firms, their leaders and partners eschew the discipline of planning and strategy. Many firms still don’t require annual plans or even the process of planning from their partners, or practice groups and many don’t even have a strategic plan for the firm. A survey conducted by Patrick McKenna and David Read More

Practice Groups Part 1: The Framework and Leadership Role

11.07.18 | Posted By: Susan Duncan
Most law firms have implemented a  practice group structure. Even those firms that retain the traditional, larger umbrella department structure (for example, corporate/transactional, litigation/disputes, regulatory,) most break down the management of the practice into smaller strategic business units that are used to: Organize lawyers and manage talent with specific skills and specialties Develop, execute and monitor Read More

Succession Planning: The Problem and a RoadMap

07.11.18 | Posted By: Susan Duncan
  Eight adults per minute turn sixty-five and by 2020, 20% of the workforce will be 65 or older.  In law firms, the problem is exacerbated as senior rainmakers aged 60 or older often control 50% or more of the client base and key relationships, and often serve in key leadership positions.  According to studies Read More

Lawyers Should be Great at Consultative and Insight Selling

06.27.18 | Posted By: Susan Duncan
When lawyers first started exploring the uncomfortable process of “selling” as early as the 1980s not long after the 1977 Bates decision allowing lawyers to advertise, it was uncomfortable and seen as unseemly even sleazy. Over the decades, consultants have adapted sales approaches shifting from the traditional model into consultative selling. This approach has proven effective Read More

A Race to the Bottom for the AmLaw 200 and Below? Doesn’t Have to Be.

06.14.18 | Posted By: Susan Duncan
A month ago, at a conference on change management, a managing partner of an AmLaw 200 firm asked a question that likely weighs on the minds of most AmLaw 200 managing partners, some of the AmLaw 100 firms and many of those below the top 200. His question was: We hear all the time that Read More

Law Firm MDPs Part 3 – Integrated Multi-Disciplinary Practices

11.01.17 | Posted By: Susan Duncan
Recognizing the need to approach client problems and needs with broader and deeper substantive disciplines than just legal expertise, law firms have evolved their service offerings to include formal, integrated teams of lawyers, consultants and other professional experts. As early as the 1980s, law firms began to form separate subsidiaries  affiliations and joint ventures to Read More

Law Firm MDPs and New Delivery Models Part 2 – Subsidiaries

10.18.17 | Posted By: Susan Duncan
In an effort to offer existing and new clients fuller capabilities and solutions, many law firms have developed wholly-owned subsidiaries often comprised of experts in an industry or service specialty who are not lawyers. As we reviewed in our last post, Law Firm MDPs and New Delivery Models Part 1 – A Primer, clients today Read More

Law Firm MDPs and New Delivery Models Part 1 – A Primer

10.04.17 | Posted By: Susan Duncan
In our post Who Do Law Firms Compete with and Why? we described the fierce competition that law firms face today, noting that much of that competition is increasingly  coming from non-law firm legal services providers, consulting firms and the Big 4, which have some of the largest law firms in the world outside the Read More