Moray McLaren leads a new research by the IBA´s Law Firm Management Committee (LFMC) exploring recent trends in partner profit sharing, remuneration and rewards.
The survey of 106 law firms, finds a continuing shift away from traditional Eat What You Kill and Lockstep approaches. Four priorities were highlighted:
Gaining a better definition of partner contribution with an increasing adoption of non-financial performance indicators
Introducing clearer guard rails within tighter performance bands
Providing leadership with “teeth” by revisiting and reinforcing governance
Moving from partner evaluation to partner development.
Participants also point to their leadership challenges – contrasting a high level of responsibility with a perceived lack of authority. In terms of barriers to change, survey respondents listed the following:
Lack of partner accountability (44 percent)
Lack of shared partner goals (29 percent)
Fear of conflict (16 percent)
Absence of trust (11 percent)
(They could score multiple options.)
The research wouldn´t have been possible without the support of Stephen Revell and the LFMC officers as well as Professor David B. Wilkins and his team at Harvard Law School. I am also very grateful to Luis de Carlos who chairs the LawAhead Centre on the Legal Profession at IE Law School.
The research was published by Harvard Law School on Friday and is available online here: Defining the perfect partner: Articulating performance metrics for a new era.