Law Firm Management Committee Strategy

Summary of the strategic objectives and priorities for 2016:

1.     Ensure that all six LFMC Working Groups (WGs) become more active and have a critical mass of enthusiastic people, who are ready to contribute to the WGs success. Find out if each WG could have a share of the LFMC budget (Aku Sorainen in charge).

2.     Revive the LFMC Newsletter and ensure all WGs contribute regularly content to LFM Database and thus to the Newsletter (Abe Schear, Malcolm Pike and Mariano Batalla in charge).

3.     Continue to drive development of the LFMC knowledge database / toolkit (Malcolm Pike and Mariano Batalla in charge, supported by Rob Millard and Abe Schear.)

4.     Continue organising regional LFM conferences in close co-operation with the WGs, regional vice-chairs and other committees in different regions of the word. (Rob Millard and Hermann Knott in charge)

5.     Continue to deliver a suite of high-quality panel discussions and other sessions at the annual IBA conference (Myra Garrett, Christoph Vaagt and Jaime Fernando Madero in charge)

6.     Progress the LFMC’s initiative in Africa including the scholarship competitions for the annual conference (Rob Millard and Deepa Vallabh in charge)

1.     Mission. To be a leading global forum for developing and discussing concepts and sharing experience and knowledge on law firm management issues by way of quality programs, seminars, best practices and articles on all aspects of law firm management for firms in the private practice of all sizes.

2.     Vision. To be the leading global organization for exchange of best practices in law firm leadership and management.

3.     Membership.  LFMC believes in quality over the quantity. With present numbers in membership we are looking to attract more of broader leadership of law firms versus increase of general numbers

4.     Conferences.  There are an adequate number of the conferences organized by IBA and other institutions all around the world on the law firm management and leadership matters. LFMC intends to introduce a lead event Law Firm Management Day once per year in Europe starting from 2017, possibly in cooperation with one of the committees, such as Corporate counsel, Young lawyers, Senior lawyers in view of a joint conference. We will also organize more regional conferences together with the Regional Fora to reach out to all our members worldwide and capture regional differences in handling law firm management issues. In 2016 the focus will be in the following: Possibly organise a conference or training course in Africa – perhaps supporting an existing initiative by the South African Law Society (Rob Millard / Deepa Vallabh in charge). Other set conferences: New York in May 2016 (Stephen Bowman in charge). Hong Kong or Tokyo (Hermann Knott). We are also ready to provide Law firm management component to regional conferences. Responsible officers are Hermann Knott (Latin American Regional Forum) and Rob Millard (African Regional Forum).

5.     Structure of the committee. For better structuring of the activities of LFMC, the working groups (WG) were  introduced in the beginning of 2015. Those WGs are:

                                                    i.     Strategy

                                                  ii.     Governance and Partnership

                                                iii.     Business Development and Marketing

                                                iv.     Leadership and Talent Management

                                                  v.     Knowledge Management and IT

                                                vi.     Finances

WGs are in the centerof activity of the LFMC.It is a priority of the committee in 2016 to make all WGs succeed and to become more structured, active and consistent.  (Aku Sorainen in charge of ensuring implementation of above)

6.     Use of the LFMC budget in 2016

i.       What is LFMC budget? Application has been made to the IBA for three scholarships for young African lawyers in 2016, all funded out of the PPID budget. (In 2015, one of two awarded was funded by the LFMC budget.) Can WGs use some part of LFMC budget (Treasury Tunde Ajibade in charge).

7.     Career opportunities within the LFMC.  LFMC seeks both attraction of new talent and leaders into the activities of the committee and retaining those who continue to contribute value in roles where they are able to do so, for as long as possible.

a.      Start with a role in one of the WGs and proceed to WG co-chair position (ideally we have sufficient balance of practicing lawyers and consultants in the WG leadership).

b.     After successfully leading the WG one may become invited to the advisory board or to assume an LFMC officer’s role.

c.      After ending the LFMC officer’s role one may become invited to the advisory board.

d.     Despite above, one may be invited to the advisory board directly from the WG, without having been appointed to a WG co-chair or an LFMC officer role before.

e.      While in the advisory board, one should continue an active role in the WG where he/she has been member of and thus provide continuity, support and active sharing of the best-practices. A member of the advisory board may also join another WG and may eventually become appointed WG co-chair, but not anymore in the same WG where one has earlier held similar position nor eventually become an LFMC officer again if one has earlier held an officer’s position in LFMC.

8.     Increased social interaction between LFMC members and officers.We all wish to see more interaction between members both when meeting in person and in between. To this end, we will

a.      Institute an open forum at the each IBA Annual Conference, open to all members and other participants of the conference, in a special format which would allow a maximum participation and sharing of experience/knowledge (like: World Café, Open Space, future search conferences etc.) (Myra Garret and Christoph Vaagt in charge).

i.       Continue the every year pre-conference Workshop, as well as every year LFMC breakfasts and dinners for LFMC officers, WG leaders and officers of other committees in order to develop the LFMC further (Abe Schear in charge of these events in Washington).

b.     Make use of the mid-year conference more in view of increased interaction of officers (Myra Garret in charge).

9.     Increased use of social media among LFMC members.We will explore making more use of social media for all members in conjunction with the Knowledge Database, but maybe also on LinkedIn, or alike

a.      Aim is to exchange experience by way of social media.

b.     Idea is to connect people and make officers more easily visible to LFMC members (Malcolm Pike and Mariano Batalla in charge)

10.  More effective liaison between LFMC leadership. A schedule of monthly telephone conferences between the LFMC leadership has been instituted by Aku Sorainen.

Guideline to best practices for organising LFM conferences andsessions during IBA Annual Conference

1.     If one plans to make a stand-alone conference, he/she should make sure sufficiently large team is involved in working on this especially including relevant WGs depending on the topic of the conference.

2.     The organiser should also identify and involve sponsors from early on (service providers such as LexisNexis etc). IBA will provide support in approaching the typical sponsors for IBA events.

3.     Always look for other committees to co-op with; Young Lawyers, Senior Lawyers, European Forum and other regional foras etc.

4.     Keep close contact with IBA staff Astrid, Becca and Mark Ellis.