Motivation has always been a key challenge for law firms. But the economic environment is affecting everyone: from the most junior lawyer wondering what their future holds - if anything - to the most senior who has no fight left in them.The issue of ‘Who?’ and ‘How?’ to tackle the issue cannot be ignored. And experts suggest that, even if it were available, throwing money at the problem won’t work anymore.
The economic crisis is fast becoming business as usual, and domestic law firms urgently need to take action if they are to exist in a post-crisis landscape. They need to make tough decisions, say lawyers, and, most importantly, they need to be doing it now.
With traditional markets in recession, law firms are looking to emerging ones for new opportunities. Iberian firms have been leading the way in Lusophone Africa, but their global competitors are paying ever greater attention.
Now that times are quieter, will Iberia’s law firms end their obsession with growth? Easier said than done, as many argue that current partnership models require growth. Stress lines are already appearing as law firms try to contemplate the years ahead.
The coming year will see pricing continue to be a key battle ground between law firms, predict some. A reduction in transactions, concern over utilisation rates, particularly of junior lawyers, and an increased sophistication in the way General Counsel manage their external legal needs, means that more than ever firms have to differentiate their services to win work.