Saturday, May 27, 2017
ABA Journal, Law Firm Leaders Report Lawyer Oversupply and 'Chronically Underperforming Lawyers':
Fifty-two percent of law firm leaders responding to Altman Weil’s Law Firms in Transition Survey said their equity partners are not sufficiently busy. Sixty-two percent said nonequity partners are not busy enough, and 25 percent said associates don’t have enough work. Eighty-eight percent of the leaders said they have “chronically underperforming lawyers” at their firms. When asked why, 82 percent identified weak business development skills and 59 percent said flat or declining market demand was part of the problem.
“Decreasing demand for legal services is endemic in the profession,” the survey said. “While reducing compensation may be an appropriate response to underperformance, it should not be mistaken for a remedial tool. Experience shows that the right response is to make a plan for improvement with a clear timeline, and to remove those lawyers who are not able to turn their performance around.”