In a new CareerBuilder survey of more than 2600 hiring managers and human resource professionals nationwide, 71% said they value emotional intelligence in an employee more than IQ and 34% said they are placing even greater emphasis on emotional intelligence when hiring and promoting employees post-recession.  And 59% said they would not hire someone who has a high IQ

The article “Pay Gap Widens at Big Law Firms as Partners Chase Star Attorneys,” published in The Wall Street Journal last week, reported on the increasing spread in partner compensation at large law firms, setting many in the industry talking.  In fact, the article understates the extent of the spread, the factors driving it and the impact that spread is having on both the firms in question and throughout the industry.

As discussed in my CCM audio conference on partnership compensation trends last month, the spread 10 years ago at most firms was 3 or 4 to 1, with partners moving up the pay scale based either on performance or tenure or some combination of the two.  That spread has grown in the last few years to over 20/1 at some firms, more than twice what the WSJ cites, which obviously didn’t find any firms with record spreads willing to fess up publicly.  Unfortunately, many times, thanks to lack of transparency, the partners themselves don’t realize the extent of the spread and therefore aren’t able to tattle. 

Why the increase?


Continue Reading Large Firm Spread

Back when we were all focused on raising our retention rate of associates, I also waved the flag about the poor retention rate we have with the lateral partners we hire–a musical chair game that has been in full swing for a number of years and seems to have survived or at least is being revived after

From 2:00 pm to 3:15 EST on Thursday April 29, 2010 Muir will lead an audio conference discussion hosted by the Center for Ccompetitive Management (CCM) entitled "Lateral Partner Hires: Selecting and Integrating the Best Fit for the Firm," centering on the issues associated with hiring and integrating lateral partners. A record number of lateral partner

The partner smack down has begun.

Here’s the most recent tally for equity partner announcements: Skadden, Arps named 8 new partners, down from 25; Debevoise & Plimpton named 2, down from 6; Weil, Gotshal promoted 3, down from 7; Cleary Gottlieb elected 4 new partners, half as many as in 2008; Ropes & Gray named

While no one in his or her right mind yet concedes it, let’s just assume that the tides have turned and the billable hour is a thing of the past.  What becomes of all the firm procedures and evaluation and promotion and compensation systems triggered or run by billable hours?

How do you tell your associates how much you expect them

Following up on our November 1 entry "The Importance of Glue" is an article by Patricia Gillette, a partner at Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, published December 9 in The American Lawyer, and reproduced below in its entirety.

"The Message That Will Seal Law Firms’ Doom: ‘It’s Nothing Personal’

It’s not personal.

This is the current mantra

Ronda Muir will be a featured panelist at the annual general meeting of the Attorneys’ Liability Assurance Society (ALAS) in Quebec City, Quebec to be held June 25-26.   ALAS is the premier provider of professional liability insurance for large law firms in the United States, currently insuring 237 firms.  Muir will discuss lawyer personality, firm culture and other aspects that

Collaboration in the form of teamwork may be the 21st Century’s technology, in that it promises strides in greater productivity–but only when done well.  It can also veer from chaos to constipation. David Maister’s famous article Are Law Firms Manageable? questions whether lawyers can make the transition from "a managerial approach based on partner autonomy to