Designing the Future Law Firm

You may have heard about the Business Leadership Summit being organized by The Lawyer, taking place in London September 22—23. (More information here; registration here.) The theme is “embracing change in the delivery of legal services,” and here are are a few of the highlights: The keynote speaker on Day 2 will be Peter Kalis,
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Articles, Business Models, Finance, Partnership Structures, Strategy

The Client Seat (3)

The doughty team from St. Michael’s Episcopal is now roughly two months into our engagement of an AmLaw 100 firm to help assess the zoning, land use, “open space,” and other issues surrounding our vacant corner lot and opportunities for development. (Earlier installments in this series are first here and second here.) Attentive readers may
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Articles, Client Relationships

Last Chance to Take the “Collaboration” Survey

The polls will close this coming Friday, July 15th, at 6:00 pm New York time. Take the survey before time runs out! Remember: It only takes three to five minutes, and when you complete it you can voluntarily enter a random drawing to win one of two $50 gift cards.


IBM Watson & Machine Learning

Last week here in New York we had the opportunity to invite a couple of dozen law firms to “An Introduction to IBM Watson” at the brand new $1-billion IBM Watson facility down on Astor Place. This is not going to be a report on that event, except insofar as it helped advance our thinking
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Articles, Leadership, Strategy, Technology strategy

Happy 4th!


Site Was Down For a Few Hours

Deepest apologies from all of us here at Adam Smith, Esq., but our site suffered a “denial of service” attack very early this morning NY time and was down for a few hours. (Just in case you were wondering if it was you; it wasn’t.) As you can see, we’re once again a live  inhabitant
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About the Site, Articles

“Collegial and Collaborative?” Really? (Take Two)

Two weeks ago we invited you to take a survey (three to five minutes of your time, tops) to try to get to the bottom of whether law firms are really "collegial and collaborative," as they are perennially asserting. If you missed your chance the first time around, here it is again: A gentle reminder,
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Articles, Client Relationships, Cultural Considerations, Leadership, Practice Group Management

Complexity Requires Systems

Much talk has been devoted lately to whether the growth of in-house law departments will take market share from Big Law, or, posed more in the language of economics, whether in-house lawyers are a reasonable substitute for outside counsel. Confessing that I have not devoted concerted effort to exploring the issue, I suppose my own
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Articles, Business Models, Finance, Strategy, Technology strategy

Looking for Innovation in All The Wrong Places

Jimmy Lee, 62, died last week of a heart attack after working out, at his home in Darien. If that name doesn’t ring a bell, he was a vice chairman of JPMorgan Chase, where he had spent his entire 40-year career. He started right out of Williams College at Chemical Bank (later merged into JPMC) when
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Articles, Business Models, Leadership, Strategy

“Collegial & Collaborative?”: Let’s Find Out

We’ve written before about law firms’ nearly universal use of the terms “collegial” and “collaborative” to define what makes their cultures, each and every one, special. So indiscriminate is this usage that we find it not just promiscuous but bordering on wanton, and becoming in and of itself devoid of meaning. On the other hand.
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Articles, Client Relationships, Cultural Considerations, Marketing, Practice Group Management