Thursday, February 10, 2011

Criteria for Promotion to Partner

Legal management consultant Joel A. Rose notes that in deciding whom to promote to partner, quality performance is no longer the single most important issue. Based on his work with mid-sized and larger firms, he offers 12 criteria:

 1. Economic consideration—the past, present, and predicted ability of the individual to contribute to the firm financially.

 2. Non-billable hours, as a yardstick for measuring the individual’s level of interest in the firm’s success.

3. Longevity—how long has he or she worked at the firm.

 4. Client origination—the ability to attract new clients.

 5. Collection of hours billed, as opposed to just the number of hours billed.

 6. Community involvement.

 7. Client relations.

 8. Ability to handle complex matters with minimal partner supervision.

 9. Professional skills.

10. Case management

 11. Cooperative spirit.

 12. Personal presentation.

 Students often don’t realize that there is more to practicing law than honing analytical abilities and producing quality work. I regularly remind students that there are plenty of bright folks graduating from law school every year, and to stand out as young lawyers, they need to think about networking, developing a “book” of clients, and getting along with their co-workers.


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