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Why strategic planning does not work!

While some claim that profit-per-partner is growing (and for some it has been) don’t be fooled, it is not going to last much longer for those playing the game by following the same old rules. Patrick McKenna of Edge International discusses how law firms should actively challenge the traditional concepts of management and embrace a new approach to the time old problem of strategic planning.

5 June 2001

Look behind these profit numbers. Across the profession, leverage is flat, margins are starting to erode, and utilisation is quickly reaching its peak of human endurance. When we conducted an extensive analysis of the numbers, we discovered that only 19 of the Am Law 100 were above-average revenue-per-lawyer (RPL) performers over a ten-year period from 1990 to 1999. We also found that based on a similar RPL comparison, only 25 of the Am Law 200 outperformed their peers over the last two years (where comparative statistics were available).

So what is it that these few star performers are doing differently?

Based on our research, meetings with the leadership at literally hundreds of law firms over the past few years and our observations grounded in two decades of working within the profession, we believe the overwhelming difference can be attributed to how these firms see the future, how they determine their particular direction, and how they craft their comp...

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