Beth Shapiro Kaufman spoke with The American Lawyer concerning successful succession planning. To view the full transcript, please visit The American Lawyer's website.
Excerpt taken from the article.
Keep an eye on the pipeline. If your firm has an aging star or two, those partners could try to find a younger version of themselves, with similar qualifications. The next generation might come from the government, from a similar firm or even from within a firm's associate ranks. Why not then market the younger lawyer as a future filler-of-shoes? "It's kind of like raising your own children. If you want them to turn out a certain way, you have to put the effort in," says Beth Shapiro Kaufman, president of Caplin & Drysdale.
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Have the hard talks. Sometimes a firm sees an older key partner decline in health and productivity but not retire. Firm leaders should especially watch out for dementia and other mental health issues. Kaufman says to start conversations early, with a line like this: "If you don't start transitioning your practice, your practice is going to die when you leave. Is that what you want?" she says.
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