Virtually all law firms have had to adjust business practices to address the pandemic’s impact.  Whether working remotely, refocusing or changing firm economics, making personnel moves, or partnering with clients more, today’s challenges have fundamentally changed the way law firms operate.  For the law firms grappling with too many upheavals in their world, crisis looms.

Crisis Management Plan on an office desk and papers.

Law firm crisis typically brings financial pressure.  Reduced demand, slow-paying clients, and now due obligations incurred in better times are but a few of the hallmarks of crisis.  As bad as these things can be, the strain can intensify quickly when the

Covid-19 has impacted virtually all law firms.  A few firms have benefitted, some have suffered catastrophe, while the bulk of firms fall somewhere in the middle and forge ahead as best they can.

Whether leadership for this third group is plugging a leaky dike or simply boosting morale, the focus on short-term survival is a

Regardless of degree, Covid-19’s impact on law firms is near universal.  Some firms have been impacted so severely that crisis is their reality.  Confronted with a do or die situation, strong leadership fights to bring back normalcy.  Failure can mean disaster.

Leaders used to positive law firm performance can find themselves uncertain about their new

A law firm in crisis is in a different world—a world in which leadership must learn to adapt.  It is a place that requires thinking differently, acting decisively, and making choices count.  In battling crisis mistakes inevitably happen, but successful crisis leaders keep the number and magnitude small.  A law firm leader flexes brain muscles

While law firm change is scary, in today’s evolving legal services market the absence of change may be scarier.  Law firm leaders don’t need to read expert’s opinions about the quickly moving marketplace, they see it close-up as competitors proliferate and competition intensifies.  Simply standing still by relying on tried and true practices is not

Although many law firms are enjoying increased demand, revenues and profitability, not all firms are so fortunate.  For the firms seeing a sustained slackening of demand, there is no shortage of ideas on how to combat the problem.   “Work harder,” “get out and hustle,” and “reconnect with your relationships,” are but a few of the

The concentration of law firm financial strength narrows as fewer AmLaw 200 law firms can be counted among the fortunate. As Mark A. Cohen argues in his The AmLaw 200 Is Down to 50 – Maybe 20.  What does It Mean?  a fiscal separation among bigger firms has occurred and continues.  Cohen concludes that the

“Law firm disasters are almost always of the man-made variety…. Once a storm is brewing, add the fact that as business organizations go, a law firm is among the most fragile, and you have the climate for a series of catastrophic events.”

            from Decisions That Matter: Tales of Law Firm Leadership in Moments of Consequence

The typical press release announcing a law firm merger extolls the excitement, the opportunity to have one plus one equal three, and the great fit of culture, practices and people.  It’s perfect until it is not.  In fact, by some measures more than half of all law firm mergers fail. When the realization sets in that your law firm merger is a bad one and not the combination of your dreams, what can you do?

Besides whistling past the graveyard, you’ve got to do something.  And while a solution stimulated by panic is not recommended, prompt action is advisable. As action plan options go, the following three options generally are presented and often are considered:


Continue Reading Dealing with the Bad Law Firm Merger–Annulment, Divorce or Staying Together for the Kids?