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In Search of Perfect Client Service Why lawyers don't seem to get it

Monthly Archives: November 2008

Law Practice Today Roundtable Discussion On Economy And Law Firm Response

Posted in Commentary, People, Places and Blawgs

I am humbled to be have been included as a contributor to a roundtable discussion on the economy and law practice in a time of turmoil.  The roundtable was moderated and edited by Dennis Kennedy and was published online by Law Practice Today. The contributors included Tom Collins, Bruce MacEwen, Patrick McKenna, Jordan Furlong, Ed… Continue Reading

NPR Bashes Billable Hour

Posted in Commentary, Hourly Rates and Alternatives

   On its November 21, 2008 broadcast, NPR’s Day To Day program ran a story on the looming demise of the billable hour.  You can hear the story here.  Valorem’s own Nicole Auerbach is quoted at length, along with Susan Hackett, the General Counsel of Association of Corporation Counsel and Steven Williams of Corporate Executive… Continue Reading

Slides: Troubled Economy and Alternative Fees

Posted in Commentary

DuPage County Bar Association Speech Slides Many thanks to the kind people at the DuPage County Bar Association and the many attorneys who attended my presentation on "The Economy, Legal Fees and Your Future–or–Alternative Fees Will Help You Survive The Economic Downturn."  Here are the slides used during my presentation.

Yes, People Really Can Be Tone Deaf

Posted in Client Service, Commentary

  The message of my recent posts on law firms raising hourly rates this year (here, here and here) is that the firms that raise their rates are tone deaf.  The explanations for raising rates when client law department budgets are being slashed is self-absorbed.  They have ranged from "we can" to "we have to… Continue Reading

Walking the Client Service Walk: Client Costs

Posted in Client Service

Everyone talks the client service talk.  To hear the law firms’ side of things, our profession’s clients are the best served group of customers in the history of service providers. Well, we know better, don’t we?  Few clients (the judge that matters on this issue) believe their lawyers provide elite client service.  With that level… Continue Reading

Legal On Ramp To Aid Laid-off Associates

Posted in Commentary

My friend Paul Lippe at Legal On Ramp asked me to share this important information that may be of great interest to associates (and partners) who have become the victims of the economic downturn: Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 At Legal OnRamp, we’re concerned about the recent layoffs of associates in… Continue Reading

The 10% Game

Posted in Commentary, Hourly Rates and Alternatives

"I don’t care what you raise your rates to, just make sure you quote me a 10% discount." In a number of meetings I have attended recently with leaders of large firms, similar stories are being told.  The firm proposes an alternative fee and the client declines to pursue the alternative fee, instead asking for… Continue Reading

When David Fought Goliath, David Won

Posted in Commentary

"I have been skeptical that the global megafirms, in fact, provide the claimed superior service, quality or price.  Indeed, the relationship between the big law departments and big firms is often bedeviled by prickly issues relating to power, money, culture, and, ultimately, the foundational question of who controls the corporation’s legal matters.  These questions have… Continue Reading

Warning to BigLaw Partners: Don’t Read The November Issue of The American Lawyer

Posted in Commentary

  Legendary Sioux warrior Chief Crazy Horse is renowned for his exhortation “today is a good day to die.”  That sentiment must have been rampant among large law firm partners when they received their November edition of The American Lawyer.  Trepidation should begin right at the outset, reading Aric Press’ column.  You need to read… Continue Reading

The Dream–A Step Closer

Posted in Commentary

Normal 0 false false false EN-US X-NONE X-NONE MicrosoftInternetExplorer4 I have always tried to keep politics out of this blog.  But sometimes history overtakes events and exceptions must be made. When I was a child, I wrote a paper on Martin Luther King’s "I Have A Dream" speech and through many different avenues, it keeps… Continue Reading