Hey law firms! Have you given much thought to your partners approaching retirement, and calculated what their retirement may cost you?
At my law firm, we had great human resources management. It was so good that information was hard to come by. In fact, it was just about impossible to get any really good gossip out of management until it had made its way down to the partners, after which it became more readily available.
Since we had some really smart people at our firm (as well as a few who were not so smart), it should not be surprising that we had to compensate for the lack of information flow by learning to read between the lines.
I was speaking to a university student the other day who I will call Lara. Lara told me that she occasionally has a super nice dinner at her friend Kim’s expense.
It seems that sometimes Kim meets a Sugar Daddy who treats her to a nice meal at a fine restaurant. Kim is just a little bit nervous about meeting strange men for dinner, so she has Lara come to the restaurant, sit at a nearby table, and keep an eye on her.
Let’s say that Michael is a partner at his firm. He stays for many years and builds up a substantial client base.
And while we are making things up, let’s assume that Michael has been a team player and introduced his clients to his Partners and Associates, so as Mike comes close to retirement age, much of his work is being done by other Partners, Associates and Law Clerks.
The more seditious and outrageous stuff that I write usually originates in my own tiny little brain.
Occasionally the creative spark comes from another lawyer. This is one of those times.
This particular lawyer sent me a rant about Chat GPT which I have edited slightly. For context, this lawyer’s firm loves Chat GPT, and this particular lawyer does not, but they have to pretend that they do so as not to anger the Partner Gods. They would rather go uncredited because they don’t want to be fired.
This is the last in a series about the questions which Articling Students and new Associates should figure out about their firms when deciding whether to stay there over the long-term.
This time, I will speak about supervising lawyers (“SL”).
There is a restaurant in Lakefield, Ontario called the Canoe & Paddle. On their regular menu is a panini called the “Ultimate Grilled Cheese” which comes with smoked bacon, cheddar, asiago, tomato, and garlic butter.
On their Kids & Seniors menu they offer a grilled cheese sandwich for which the ingredients are listed as “white loaf, cheddar.” They call this the “Grilled Cheese Please.”
This is the fifth in a series about questions that Articling Students and new Associates should consider when trying to size up their new firm.
This time I will address the most senior person in charge of the money. In your firm, this person could be called any of the following: Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”), Controller, Accounting Manager, Accountant or Bookkeeper.
This is the fourth in a series about questions that Articling Students and new Associates should ponder while trying to determine whether they have landed in the right place.
This time I will address the Chief Technology Officer (the “CTO”). Of course, being lawyers we need a definition, so let’s use this one from Alexander Gillis and others at techtarget.com:
In Parts One and Two, I set out some questions that articling students and young lawyers should ask about their firm’s Managing Partner and Practice Group Leader.
Today I will tackle the much trickier issue of the Chief Operating Officer (the “COO”).