Round Table Event 4/6
Friday was the fourth of a series of six thought provoking and stimulating round tables chaired by LA’s CEO, Charlotte Butterfield and former HSF CEO, Sonya Leydecker. Anyone following Charlotte’s innovative thought leadership drive will be aware the subject matter is the Law Firm, the Lawyer and the Legal Professional of the Future.
The session was attended by 14 General Counsels who were predominantly from Financial Services, Fintech and Technology. There was an eclectic cocktail of start-up tech businesses, major names in the PE/ Investment world and major global institutions represented. For almost three hours, we thrashed out the observations and experiences (positive and otherwise) of In-House Counsels in their dealings with law firms. Themes which recurred were around the human element, the sense of being valued, the quality of service, legal technology and collaborative communication.
Should/could firms have a more concentrated client focus, provide a more holistic service, more transparency and creativity in fee arrangements? Debate buzzed around the creation of a new law firm which might find itself able, through innovative and new incentive plans for its associates and junior partners, provide an ultimately more attractive service, relationship and package to its customers?? The traditional structure of the partnership was, of course, challenged with ideas around a C suite or Non Exec Directors as well as non-lawyers playing integral and strategic roles in the firm/client relationship.
This series of events, hosted by LAW Absolute, have gathered immense momentum since the idea was formed in a legal think tank we hosted earlier in 2018. They are, wonderfully, oversubscribed and we are in the happy position of needing to host further forums up until the end of the year to create new space for those wishing to participate.
One of the reassuring and recurring themes from these sessions is that GCs feel they have a vested interest in working with law firms to embrace the change that is happening in the legal sector and successfully evolve with it.
LAW Absolute is building a movement #iamchanging through which we will explore and debate the multitude of issues with which the fast changing legal industry faces. The movement will be a solutions oriented debate with legal professionals from practice and in-house. Topics include the changing career path and aspirations of lawyers entering the profession, the evolving alternative structures which offer multiple professional services, the departure from pure partnership structures and the legal liquid workforce.