LARGE LAW FIRMS(with more than 40 partners)
What we do for these firms
Law firms with more than 40 partners, many of whom work in different offices in different fields of law and on different projects, rarely get the chance to evaluate the basis of their joint activities, to become aware of developments. Partners experience themselves as lone fighters who cannot influence or change the whole thing, and therefore withdraw into themselves. Partnerships are often steered by a management which tries to optimize the company’s performance. Partner meetings tend to be low-energy events where the essentials are discussed. At the same time, requirements are becoming more complex, competition is increasing, and thus the need to find common answers.
By strengthening the team spirit, the common goals become clearer, the challenges clearer, and the path to implementation easier. Especially those partners who resist any discipline will be motivated by the group as a whole to change their behaviour. Important management initiatives become much easier to implement.
Our approach is therefore to moderate this partnership as a whole in such a way that the common ground can be experienced, the challenges clearly identified, the energy for change mobilized and the management strengthened in its role. This creates the basis for good teams that separates top law firms from the others.
Our competence in moderating large groups in the legal market has been established for 20 years. Starting with the moderation of networks, in mergers and at events/conventions, we have learned to guide partnerships of any size through a process of self-reflection in which great energy is released. Based on the experience of community building, and our experience with even the most difficult, conflict-laden situations in partnerships, we are able to largely predict the outcome of our work.
We can name the following cases from the last 20 years of our law firm consulting, with many examples overlapping; at the core, it is always about culture change:
- Accompaniment of several international mergers of law firms from UK and US with leading German law firms in the years 2000-2005 (in my capacity as Director at Hildebrandt International, at that point in time the leading law firm consultancy worldwide)
- Definition of the independence strategy for the German location of an international alliance of law firms as well as the management structure with the result of establishing one of the most profitable law firms in Germany (measured by profit per partner)
- Design of a law firm strategy conference: large group facilitation for law firm with 280 lawyers with the result of improving identification and cooperation with the firm
- Coaching of the profit distribution committee of a large law firm: support in analyzing data and help in defining criteria for observing and evaluating the partners’ contributions
- Staff development: optimizing staff development in a nationally leading law firm by revising the understanding of the process of developing outstanding attorney personalities and professionalism in the profession and the path to achieving it
- Aligning an underperforming location of a large law firm by clarifying the economic situation, addressing grievances, and building consensus among partners for further development