5 Signs You Have a Key Employee and Not a Successor

Jeremy Poock

Founder of Senior Attorney Match

Ari Kornhaber

Ari Kornhaber

EVP & Head of Corporate Development at Esquire Bank

In this blog, we feature insights into law firm succession planning and how to discern whether you have a key employee and not a successor.

With many law firms focusing on growth in 2022, unprecedented consolidation activity has accelerated in the legal industry. As a result of this heightened interest in mergers and acquisitions, smaller law firms are taking a closer look at their succession strategies.

In particular, contingency fee law firms managed by senior attorneys are evaluating three options: first, whether to sell to a growing law firm; second, whether they have partners who are potential business successors or simply great employees; and third, whether they just maintain the status quo.

While consultants advise selling to growing firms as a preferred path for many senior attorneys, the inclination for senior attorneys is to consider an internal successor. Often, productive attorneys who show loyalty and were originally hired by the senior attorney appear to be the right choice. However, productivity and loyalty do not always make for the ideal succession candidate.

There are five important factors to consider when determining if you have a business successor or just a great employee.

  1. Has this attorney expressed an interest in taking over the firm?
  2. Are they a strong originator? Look at the business development performance.
  3. Are they serious about putting their name on the credit line or lease?
  4. Are they asking about the details of a succession plan?
  5. Is there a strong possibility that they may seek opportunities outside of your firm?

Learn more by watching the webinar short with Jeremy Poock — Founder of Senior Attorney Match — who works with firms to advise them on succession planning and understanding how to know when you have a key employee, not a successor.

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  • Life Cycle Stage: Aware
  • Content Tier: platinum
  • Content Type: webinar-short

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