Edge International


The Cultural Lenses through which We Examine Law Firms

The Cultural Lenses through which We Examine Law Firms

Cultural differences define and influence every aspect of law firms’ operations, reputations and financial success. Describing a law firm’s culture is difficult, even for people who know the organization intimately. When asked to describe a culture, people typically resort to words like “collegial” or “democratic.” While terms like this may convey a general sense of a culture, greater definition is necessary to begin to clearly differentiate various law firms’ cultures, and use knowledge of those cultures to contribute to the management of the firms.

We have created and evolved a “Law Firm Cultural Assessment,” designed to recognize discrete differences among individual law firms and provide a more precise vocabulary to describe what those differences represent. Those differences can be be examined through these four lenses:

Details about law firm culture

Each lens examines a number of components, some of which are more complex than others. In fact, the comparative weight of these factors in the make-up of a culture becomes a feature of that culture.

1. Collegiality

2. Strategic Focus

3. Governance

4. Values

Many firms for whom we do strategic assignments incorporate a cultural assessment into the process. Some firms choose to explore their cultures on a stand-alone basis and follow up that assessment with action plans to fine-tune their cultures.

If you would like to discuss your own firm’s culture, write to us at: [email protected]

Gerry Riskin

specializes in counseling law firm leaders on issues relating to the evolution of the structure and management of their law firms and the architecture of competitive strategies.  He has served hundreds of law firm clients around the globe from small boutiques to mega firms including working with the largest law firms in the world.  Gerry is still a Canadian but has resided on the Caribbean Island of Anguilla, British West Indies for more than 25 years.

Email Gerry at [email protected] or text or call him at +1 (202) 957-6717