COMPENSATION AND GOVERNANCE PLANS

Your structure matters. In our experience, changing times have forced firms to substantially change their governance and compensation systems. These are always difficult matters, but when done sensitively, the firm can emerge healthier, both financially and culturally.

Compensation: Partner compensation is an important driver of law firm strategy and financial success. The structure and process of a firm’s partner compensation system should promote stability, enhance collaboration and client development, and give the partners a sense that their efforts and contributions are being fairly measured and rewarded. In short, the best compensation systems involve predictable consequences for behaviors that either advance or hinder a firm’s strategic objectives.

  • We aim to assist in developing a system that is customized to fit a firm’s culture and focus behaviors on advancing its key objectives. Let’s be very clear: This is a risky endeavor. Changing partner compensation systems can ruin a partnership, but it can also save it. These projects are exercises in building consensus and winning approval for the future. We know, because one of us (Jim Pagliaro) has led such efforts from the inside. With sensitivity to your partners and hard-won discipline, we can help you build a better way.

Governance: While compensation systems create the blueprint for business development and client expansion-related behavior, day-to-day governance at the firm, practice, and individual level shape the culture of a firm. We have seen firms with sound compensation systems over or under-manage their firms and partners in ways that are diametrically opposed to the culture they espouse.

  • We can help identify structural governance behaviors that are hampering a firm’s development goals and can help implement governance and administrative programs to more properly manage your most important asset – your partnership.

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