Associate Dissatisfaction: The Chance that Clifford Took

On October 15, 2002, associates in the New York City office of Clifford Chance responded to a request for input from the firm's partners with a memo—a very candid memo. Somehow, a copy got into the Financial Times of London and became public. The result has been pivotal for Clifford Chance and, maybe, the legal profession globally. This article outlines practical and useful "lessons learned" from this unfortunate situation...

Planning a Law Firm Retreat: Part I

The rapid growth of law firms in the past decade has created some new and unique management difficulties. With firms’ size, and the complexity of global legal practices, coordinating the availability of partners to perform any management function beyond routine meeting attendance is increasingly difficult. The problem of finding partners to assume leadership roles is compounded by the feeling of many partners in large firms that they are functionally employees rather than owners. The values of the partnership model to which many law firms aspire are becoming difficult to achieve in a modern professional service organization. The problem is further compounded in large multi-office firms where partners not only don’t know their fellow partners from other offices well, they may not have even met each other...

Planning a Law Firm Retreat: Part II

Expanded Annual Meeting
Many firm’s partnership agreements require an annual meeting for the election of member of management, selection of new partners, approval of compensation and other similar issues. These are important issues, not only because they concern day-to-day operating concerns but because they go to the fabric of what it means to be a partnership and the concept of being the owner of a business.


A mini case study about positive change...

Characteristics of the Best Managing Partners

by Michael J. Anderson Our careers as consultants and advisors to the legal profession have brought us into contact with literally thousands of Managing Partners throughout North America and the world . Over the years we have observed certain characteristics that the most successful managers have in common.

The Art of Brainstorming: Part I

Getting the best from your group's collective thinking.

The Art of Brainstorming: Part II

Getting the best from your group's collective thinking. (Part II)

More Than a Handshake

Lateral hires that stay.

Managing for a Culture of Cooperation: An Interview with Deborah Koeffler

Deborah Koeffler is the Managing Partner of Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp in Los Angeles, California. Coming from having been a practice leader for the firm's labor and employment group, Deborah reviews the principles she learned as a practice leader and how she is employing those same principles as a firm-wide effort.