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Does this keep you up at night?

Is This News to You?

So there are lots of conversations among managing partners this morning about some recent high-profile news in the legal journals regarding missteps in the lateral hiring process. If you’re not familiar with it, here’s the story: A large law firm wooed a high-profile partner, only to have the partner resign less than two weeks into the new position. Why? The partner’s former firm had launched an investigation into some workplace behavior issues raised against him. Now we are not here to judge, but this story illuminates one of the biggest flaws (and fears) in the lateral recruiting process. Most times, the entire process is conducted in hush-hush operations, much like a special forces military black ops assignment. The problem: the firm is so focused on keeping the conversations quiet, and excited about what they’re hearing from the candidate and the numbers they see on the questionnaire, they forget the importance of due diligence. They don’t have the inside scoop before it hits the paper, or the internet. The balance of doing both well is a delicate dance. With most firms doubling down on the one proven strategy for firm growth, lateral hiring is not showing any signs of slowing down in the foreseeable future. So what precautions can a firm take to avoid the expense, the embarrassment and negative spotlight (publicity) this can bring a law firm? Our team jumped in front of this years ago, and we have been sharing our counsel with law firm clients for well over a decade. Here’s one tip: the answer is not merely relying on a questionnaire form. A form doesn’t go nearly deep enough. For more details, contact our team at to arrange for a confidential meeting, black ops style, and learn more about how your firm can avoid an embarrassing situation like this. You may also enjoy reading our blog article on Avoiding Missteps.

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