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Strategic structure: Optimise your law firm’s organisational model

A good organisational structure follows firm strategy, and a good strategy is in line with ?firm structure, says Ansgar Richter

27 November 2013

A cursory glance at industry reports suggests that everything in the legal sector is changing. Clients are said to be demanding better and more personalised yet cost-effective services. Competition between firms increases at an exponential rate. Employees are less accepting of traditional hierarchical structures; they want more meaningful work, early client exposure and greater career opportunities. Firms are exploring new markets around the world. Outsourcing abounds, and the traditionally-integrated value chain is breaking up. As a result, law firms are allegedly groping for radically different organisational designs. The classical hierarchy is increasingly out of fashion, giving way to new models of nimbler, more commercially-minded firms.

Upon closer investigation, these claims look grossly exaggerated. Certainly, the sector is in constant flux. However, it has been so for many years. There is continuity in change and some degree of change is normal in any sector...

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