The article below asks whether a strategic plan can compensate for a lack of leadership. I suggest that it can’t since you need leadership in order to execute a strategic plan. The answer for most law firms is that you need to address the leadership question as part of the strategic planning process. You may also need to appoint a managing partner to oversee the planning process and execute the strategic plan. The fact is you really can’t have one without the other. Without leadership your strategic plan will probably end up sitting on the shelf just like many other firms.
The attached article discusses the decline of the COO. In my experience, the most successful law firms have a strong managing partner (CEO) as well as a strong non-lawyer COO. As the legal industry gets more competitive with the rise of NewLaw and global law firms, it’s even more important for small and midsized law firms to be effectively managed.
Consider a management audit and review the authority that you’re giving your managing partner and COO. If you have an office manager now, consider upgrading their duties and responsibilities to a COO level. Your firm will become more profitable and nimble in tackling the challenges ahead.
Here’s a round-up of predictions for the legal industry in 2015 from some of the top thought leaders in the business: