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Category Archives: Vision

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Many firms seek pre-eminence; few realise there is a price to pay

Posted in Brand, Partners, Strategy, Values, Vision
Many firms seek pre-eminence or some version of it. If they are truly serious about such a vision, the important thing to realise is that what it takes is leadership, seriously good leadership, not just at the top, but throughout a partnership. Firms that invest in this wisely reap the rewards. (Sean Larkan, Edge International)

Many law firm partners want their firm to either be pre-eminent or to seek pre-eminence. Few realise that there is a serious price to pay. Look at the vision statements of most firms and chances are you will find words like ‘successful’, ‘leading’, ‘premier’, ‘top’ or similar. Nothing at all wrong with that. But the… Continue Reading

Is your latest big initiative truly an outflow of your vision and strategy?

Posted in Leadership, Legal Profession, Management, Strategy, Vision
Too often, on further investigation, a strategic initiative or major issue taking up senior leadership's time and energy has not real connection with the firm's vision and strategy. Sometimes this is even the rule rather than the exception. Is it any wonder then that vision and strategy does not get enough attention or never truly gets implemented, reviewed or stress-tested. (Sean Larkan 2012)

Again and again I come across senior law firm executives who are frantically busy with or concerned about their latest ‘big thing’ but who on enquiry struggle to relate this to the firm’s vision and strategy. Sometimes the latest item getting all the attention has arisen as a few other key competitor firms are doing… Continue Reading

The real leadership lessons of Steve Jobs – for legal leaders – PART THREE

Posted in Culture, Leadership, Legal Profession, Management, Strategy, Vision
Apple comp

As highlighted in PART ONE and PART TWO of this series, there are real leadership lessons for legal leaders from the career, achievements and life of the late Steve Jobs – who in just two stints of 9 and 14 years, founded and then transformed Apple Computer into the world’s most valuable company. These were the lessons… Continue Reading

The real leadership lessons of Steve Jobs – for legal leaders – PART TWO

Posted in Leadership, Legal Profession, Management, Vision
Steve Jobs etc

Last week I posted PART ONE of a short four-part series on the real leadership lessons of Steve Jobs, based in part on an HBR article (subscription required) of a similar title by Walter Isaacson, author of the Steve Jobs autobiography. We continue the theme today! A number  (but not all) of these provide great leadership and management… Continue Reading

The real leadership lessons of Steve Jobs – for legal leaders – PART ONE

Posted in Culture, Leadership, Legal Profession, Management, Strategy, Vision
Steve Jobs leadership tips for legal leaders

Walter Isaacson, author of the Steve Jobs autobiography, commented in an April 2012 Harvard Business Review article ‘The real leadership lessons of Steve Jobs‘ (subscription required), that following the publication of his book many writers have tried to draw management lessons from Steve Jobs, however, most of them, incorrectly, became fixated rather on the “rough… Continue Reading

Lex Africa – the first and largest network of African law firms – 20 years on

Posted in Brand, Legal Profession, Strategy, Uncategorized, Vision
Lex Africa, Africa's first and largest network of law firms, which has been in operation for nearly 20 years, comprises 54 members in 28 countries

Lex Africa, the first and largest network of African law firms, is holding it’s annual general meeting in April 2012 in Maputo, Mozambique. I thought I would mention Lex Africa in case readers ever need assistance in Africa and want a referral to a reputable firm. I am also delighted to be attending the AGM… Continue Reading

Leadership Frame #6: Challenge your vision and strategy

Posted in Leadership, Legal Profession, Management, Professional Service Firms (PSFs), Strategy, Vision
Stress test your strategy during formulation, prior to finalisation and regularly during the implementation phase, with semi-formal and formal reviews at designated times

Challenging one’s vision and strategy somehow seems counter-intuitive, especially when so much time, effort and thought has gone into putting it together. But strategy is about achieving a competitive, and ideally a dominant positioning, and challenge it you must. Professional Service Firms (PSFs) find determining and reviewing vision and strategy a real bind. A necessary… Continue Reading

Thought leadership, pricing, knowledge management and challenges for lawyers – Q&A

Posted in Leadership, Legal Profession, Management, Strategy, Uncategorized, Vision
Chicago - the venue of a recent biannual Edge International meeting and the Futures Conference of the College of Law Practice Management - from the time of arrival at the airport till you reach the city centre, it strikes one as the city of art and architecture

Questions on thought leadership, pricing, knowledge management & future challenges for lawyers were put to fellows of the College of Law Practice Management for the COLPM Futures Conference in Chicago recently and published in a special issue of InsideLegal’s Thought Leaders Digest last week – below are the questions & my responses: Q1 – Thought leadership… Continue Reading

Leadership Frame #3 – leaders must understand the strategic implications of Social Media

Posted in Leadership, Legal Profession, Strategy, Vision
Social Media icons

At first blush social media would not seem to be the domain of leadership. It is however important that leaders understand enough about such developments, particularly where growth has been explosive and the impact wide-ranging, to appreciate potential strategic implications for their firms. In this third Leadership Frame (introduced a few posts ago), I talk to… Continue Reading

Leadership Frames – essential skills and styles for leadership

Posted in Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, Legal Profession, Management, Strategy, Vision
Leadership Frames are an easy way to think about the various key techniques, skills and thinking that successful leaders employ to undertake their craft

Leadership Frames – essential skills, techniques, processes, understandings, thinking and behavioral styles for leadership. I intend to deal with 25 to 30 of these frames over future blog posts, the first, on Emotional Intelligence, starts today. Many leaders ‘wing it’. They rely on their innate ability and don’t develop their leadership skills and learn key skills and… Continue Reading

8 leadership tips for legal leaders from business leader

Posted in Change, Emotional Intelligence, Leadership, Management, Trust & Respect, Vision
Image by Patrick Hoesly

I talked on leadership tips and frames at a keynote at the annual Boss of the Year Awards Convention in South Africa in August 2011. Brand Pretorius, recently retired former head of Toyota and McCarthy Motor Holdings in South Africa and a recognized ’captain of industry’, also delivered a keynote drawing on his extensive leadership experience, with some… Continue Reading