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Actively managing learning and development

Legal Compliance Bulletin, January 2017
The Law Society - Jan 2017

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Remuneration systems for partners of law firms

Article by Peter Scott based on an interview with journalist Diana Bentley.
Lexis@PSLPractice Management - Oct 2016

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Put ethics back at the heart of legal practice

If the spirit of ethical practice is not deep-rooted in a firm's very being, the consequences can be far-reaching.
Legal Compliance Bulletin - Jul 2016

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Systemise your compliance: can you afford not to?

Managing risk and compliance is regarded by many as a burden, usually because they lack sufficient resources to do so. It need not be so ...
Legal Compliance Bulletin (Law Society) - Mar 2016

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The quickest way to damage your firm - carry on rewarding the slackers

Firms that don't stop rewarding bad behaviour will eventually fail.
BDLN - Feb 2016

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Financial stability

It is rather surprising that the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), according to its Risk Outlook 2015/16, no longer views lack of 'financial stability' in a law firm as a 'high priority risk' for a regulator that protects people who use legal services, the operation of the rule of law and the proper administration of justice.
Legal Compliance Bulletin - Jan 2016

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Financial Health Checks

Article by journalist Diana Bentley based on interviews with Peter Scott and Andy Poole.
Lexis@PSLPractice Management - Jan 2016

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Continuing competence - an opportunity for law firms

Published in January 2016 via the newsletter of The Thriving Company.
The Thriving Company - Jan 2016

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Complacency kills: change before you have to

There is a tsunami of change coming towards law firms and they need to be prepared. However, if they rest on their laurels and are then forced to change, that process can be painful for them. Instead firms should embrace change and make it their ally, which is what the most successful businesses do.
BDLN - Dec 2015

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Allies or aliens?

The relationship between a managing partner and a finance director is of critical importance to the well-being of a law firm. However, as firms increasingly recognise they must change in response to the challenges they now face, the precise roles of each and the relationship between the two are evolving. www.managingpartner.com
Managing Partner - Nov 2015

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Lateral hiring of Partners

Article by journalist Diana Bentley based on an interview with Peter Scott and with John Grimwade of JDP.
Lexis@PSLPractice Management - Aug 2015

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Top tips for merger

Article by journalist Diana Bentley based on an interview with Peter Scott
Lexis@PSLPractice Management - Aug 2015

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Partner Pay

Article by journalist Diana Bentley based on an interview with Peter Scott
Lexis@PSLPractice Management - Aug 2015

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10 top tips for managing compliance

Legal Compliance Bulletin
Law Society - Jul 2015

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Has your law firm made plans for the future?

Article by journalist Diana Bentley based on an interview with Peter Scott.
Lexis@PSLPractice Management - Apr 2015

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Showing you care

Article by journalist Diana Bentley based on an interview with Peter Scott
Lexis®PSL Practice Management - Mar 2015

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Measuring partners' performance - best practice

Practice Management analysis: How important are key performance indicators (KPIs) for partners and how should they be developed? Mark Jones, partner at Addleshaw Goddard LLP and leader of Addleshaw Goddard's Professional Practices Consultancy, and Peter Scott, principal of Peter Scott Consulting and former managing partner of Eversheds' London and European offices, discuss best practice in this area.
Lexis®PSL Practice Management - Mar 2015

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Lawyers are not interpreting financial reports

Implementing a financial education programme can be one of the most effective initiatives to take to improve cash generation.
Solicitors Journal - Oct 2014

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How good is your disaster recovery plan?

Is it a mystery to all or the lynch pin of your firm's strategy? Read our guide to avoid being caught out.
Legal Compliance Bulletin - Sep 2014

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Market position

Peter Scott advises how to keep one step ahead of your competitors.
Personal Injury Law Journal - Aug 2014

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Warning signs

What law firms should be doing to ensure effective management of financial stability.
Solicitors Journal - Feb 2014

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Financial stability

Financial stability is a current topic of concern as law firms continue to fail and the SRA announces it has identified at least 1,200 firms with evidence of financial difficulty after it carried out a mass survey of at-risk sectors.
Legal compliance bulletin - Jan 2014

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Monitoring compliance failures – Where risk meets KM

Developing a knowledge-management strategy to capture and share knowledge is an essential component of effective risk management.
COLP & COFA Update – Volume 1 Issue 1 June 2013 - Jun 2013

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Four years on: where are we now?

Sometimes it is useful to stop, reflect and take stock, especially during times of momentous challenge.
Legal Compliance Bulletin - May 2013

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An ABS application: one firm’s experience

In an interview, Ann Harrison, chair of the law firm Stephensons, describes the firm's experience of applying to become an alternative business practice (ABS).
Legal Compliance Bulletin, Law Society - May 2013

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COLP and COFA approvals: What should law firms learn from the process?

Compliance officers should now all be in place, and most are. But you would be mistaken in thinking that approval of individuals in their posts is automatic.
Legal compliance bulletin - Jan 2013

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Outcomes - focused regulation - its impact to date and thoughts on likely future repercussions

The author's contribution to the report published December 2012 by the ARK Group on The Future of Legal Services – Expert Analysis. The report reveals renowned experts' vision of the future of legal practice as law firms look to 2013 and beyond.
Expert Analysis - Dec 2012

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Reluctant COLPs: how prepared are they for the problems ahead?

When the new appointees take up their posts in the New Year, they will need to balance their responsibilities to their firms and to the regulator. No easy task, but it can be done. (Co-authored with Stephen Ralph of Penningtons LLP.)
Legal compliance bulletin - Sep 2012

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Using a partner reward system to keep your law firm ahead of the competition

Outstanding partner performance is now more important than ever to keep your practice ahead of the competition. So how can you use your reward systems to achieve this goal?
Managing for success - Aug 2012

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OFR and mergers: another hurdle to overcome?

For many law firms, a merger could be the next logical step to consolidating and expanding their business. In the new regulatory regime, it is advisable to be wise before the event and tread carefully to avoid unseen pitfalls ahead.
Legal compliance bulletin - May 2012

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SRA requirement to appoint compliance officers risks clash of responsibilities

Balance independence with business knowledge when appointing COLPs, say Stephen Ralph and Peter Scott
Legal Week - Apr 2012

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Measures to achieve financial stability under OFR

Under outcomes-focused regulation (OFR), financial management in law firms will no longer be just about running a profitable and sound business. Financial directors and compliance officers will also need to ensure that their firm is meeting all its compliance obligations in terms of its financial stability.
Legal Compliance Bulletin - Law Society - Jan 2012

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The role of the COLP

How can the role of the compliance officer for legal practice (COLP) be effectively carried out when outcomes focused regulation (OFR) becomes a reality for law firms on 6 October this year?
Legal Compliance Bulletin - Law Society - Jul 2011

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Don’t cross-sell, co-sell

Overview of ways to increase fee earners' effectiveness at developing business with clients.
Professional Marketing - Apr 2011

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Achieving a level playing field for the integrated multidisciplinary ABS

by David Furst of Horwath Clark Whitehill, Accountants and Peter Scott
Legal Compliance Bulletin - Sep 2010

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How one small firm approaches compliance

Compliance is regarded by many law firms as a burden. However, it need not be, even for small firms if they organise themselves to manage compliance and risk in a systematic manner.
Legal compliance bulletin - May 2010

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Financial management in the challenging legal world of tomorrow

The authors’ contribution to the report published on 15 January 2010 by the Ark Group on The Future of Legal Services – Expert Analysis. The report reveals renowned experts’ vision of the future of legal practice as firms look to 2010 and beyond – see press release attached.
Ark Group - Jan 2010

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Masterclass – a virtuous circle

Law firms are right to expect high performance from all their partners and professionals. But what can they do to bring that about? There are various elements that need to be in place to achieve high performance in practice.
Managing Partner magazine - Jan 2010

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All-round feedback in a firm can deliver higher performance

Getting the best performance from people and helping them maximise their potential should always be priorities for law firms. When we emerge from the recession, achieving higher performance is likely to matter as never before if firms are to be able rapidly to exploit market opportunities and build their competitive advantage.
The Law Gazette - Sep 2009

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How a large law firm manages its risks

In an interview with Hazel Ryan, risk director of Eversheds, we learn some lessons on risk management from one of the major law firms in the UK.
Legal Compliance Bulletin – Law Society Publishing - Sep 2009

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How to stop Partnership from losing its glitter

Does and invitation to become an equity partner really reflect your worth to the firm or are you being asked to fill a financial 'black hole' or allow older partners to retire?
Law Business Review - Aug 2009

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Four management rules for tough economic times

With economic turmoil affecting all businesses, law firms should implement a four-point strategy to get the most out of their resources.
The Law Gazette - Oct 2008

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Risky Business

The ‘R’ word is being spoken about again and the credit crunch is having an impact which many firms have not experienced since the early 1990s. This will require those running law firms to be on their mettle as never before.
FDLegal - Aug 2008

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Is your firm building for the future by investing now in the next generation?

Peter Scott and Phil Gott explore the ways that law firms should be building for the future by investing now in the next generation.
Legal Hub - Nov 2007

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Financial Performance

Are Your Partners Prepared To Be Managed?
Legal Hub - Oct 2007

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Financial performance

Are your partners measuring up?
FD Legal - Oct 2007

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Farming Talent

People development is an effective tool in increasing a firm’s productivity. But it is not about spending more money on developing staff, but channelling funds thoughtfully.
Law Gazette - Aug 2007

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A land of opportunities

The Legal Services Bill will create a land of opportunities for firms brave enough to take advantage.
FD Legal - Jan 2007

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Cash management: put the squeeze on your business

Cash management, to accelerate cash flow and reduce debt and partner investment, is fundamental to developing a law firm.
FD Legal - Nov 2006

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Shaping up for growth

Some firms are more than eager to welcome non-lawyer investment, but may be lacking the business structures that would make them an ideal candidate. Peter Scott reveals what investors are looking for.
Law Gazette - Oct 2006

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Cold winds of change

Are your firm’s organisational structures in shape to meet the challenges ahead, asks Peter Scott and Brigid Sutcliffe
Managing For Success - Oct 2006

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Taking control of the finances

Managing the financial well-being of a law firm tends to be not so much about figures, but more about managing people to get the best out of them.
Managing Partner - Jun 2006

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Facing up to partner problems

Performance issues can cause instability, financial loss and stress and may often result in other good staff leaving.
Law Gazette - Jun 2006

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The government’s White Paper on the future of legal services

The government’s White Paper on the future of legal services has just been published and Managing Risk asked several alumni in the legal sector to offer some thoughts on how this affects the future of law firms.
Managing Risk - Dec 2005

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How firms can change gears to make the most of ABSs

Peter Scott argues that consolidation is the key if solicitors are to offer serious competition to non-lawyers.
Law Gazette - Nov 2005

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Choose your king wisely

Managing partner elections are now the usual way of selecting the head of a firm, but are they the best?
Legal Week - Sep 2004

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Managing for succession

Succession is high on the agenda for many firms facing the retirement of partners who have been driving forces in the business. Proper planning well in advance is key to developing strategies for managing the process, so that those approaching retirement are prepared for the change and can bow out leaving their firms in a healthy state, capable of facing the future with confidence.
Managing For Success - Jul 2004

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The power of two

Partnerships are not just about individuals. The bigger picture is partnerships between law firms. Peter Scott assesses why so many of these alliances fail.
The Lawyer - May 2004

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Double Trouble At The Top

If Senior Partners and Managing Partners can work together effectively then they can do a great deal to drive a firm forwards. However, the absence of clearly defined roles and a spirit of co-operation can cause serious problems. How should this issue be approached? Peter Scott suggests an effective model to make the most of the pairing.
Managing For Success (The Law Society) - Jan 2004

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Altered images

The national model has served many law firms well over the last few decades, but can non London-based firms realistically make the leap in perception necessary to establish themselves in the City?
Legal Week - Oct 2003

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Hitting the target

Pushing through any merger between two law firms is hard enough, but when transatlantic mergers are undertaken the problems are increased tenfold, due mostly to a lack of foresight by management.
Legal Week - Aug 2003

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For the good of the company

As the collapse of Andersen demonstrated, LLP status can be a vital safety net for even the most stable professional services firm. But limiting professional liability is not the only reason why law firm managers should find taking LLP an attractive prospect.
Legal Week - Jun 2003

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Dealing with complacency

Some firms have done better than others in the downturn.
The Law Society Gazette - Feb 2003

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What price is a good leader?

Law firms everywhere are experiencing change, which for the most part is being forced upon them by the market. Clients expect value-added services and better value for money, and, as a result, the competition just gets tougher.
ManagingPartner - Jan 2003

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Follow The Leader

An effective leadership is indispensable in any firm, but what qualities does this require? For consultant Peter Scott, a clarity of thought and vision is essential, and so is the capacity to earn the respect of the partners. An inspiring and inclusive approach is the key to making things happen.
Managing For Success (The Law Society) - Jan 2003

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Bank on partners

In straitened times, cash collection by law firms becomes critical for long term future growth. Partners need to be trained to pursue fees more actively.
Legal Week - Dec 2002

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Adapt to survive

Partners who do not perform to the required standard can be coached to employ new working practices, but if they still show no signs of improving their productivity, it may well be time to show them the exit.
Legal Week - Oct 2002

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Reputation is all

Law firms are in big trouble if their reputations become tarnished. So how can you keep your good name? Two experts offer some pointers.
Legal Business - Oct 2002

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Sacrifice your sacred cows

Many firms can't or won't face up to underperforming partners, unprofitable business or out-of-date processes. But avoiding such issues will be damgaing in the long run, says Peter Scott
Estates Gazette - Oct 2002

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Breaking up is hard to do

Under-contributing partners can prove to be a burden on a firm if they are not dealt with at the right time and in the right way. There are procedures that should be followed, but it will never be an easy process.
Legal Week - Aug 2002

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Opinion

Is your management in control of the knowledge relating to the risk areas in your firm? And is it taking effective steps to manage those risks? Given recent events in the professional world, the answer for many firms is likely to be no.
The Lawyer - Jul 2002

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Managing the Risks when Sacking Your Law Firm

In today's difficult economic climate, with corporate margins under pressure, clients (and in-house counsel in particular) muast be more and more performance and value-driven.
Of Counsel - Jun 2002

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Law firms at the crossroads

With difficult decisions to be made, Peter Scott advises smaller practices to face up to problems now and set realistic goals for future success The solicitors' profession is segregated into many different types and sizes of firms.
The Law Society Gazette - May 2002

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Act now or pay later

With at least one firm announcing an additional burden of £2.5m following the Budget, the race is on to find ways to make savings should the economy not pick up. Louis Baker and Peter Scott look at the options for those faced with the need to maintain margins
Legal Week - May 2002

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Making heavenly matches

With mounting economic uncertainty management are once more turning their attention to mergers as the best way to secure their firms’ future. But, argues Peter Scott, a veteran of three successful mergers, it is not a decision to be taken lightly.
Legal Week - Mar 2002

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Opinion

If law firms really do need to develop their businesses internationally in order to meet their clients' needs, then the starting point should be to examine those needs to find ways to better service them. That way they will be adding value and building competitive advantage for themselves.
The Lawyer - Jan 2002

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Older partners can still manage

Older partners can still manage Firms that throw partners on the scrapheap once they reach the age of 50 are missing out on a wealth of experience.
The Law Society Gazette - Dec 2001

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No room for dead wood

With the economic downturn showing no signs of lifting, Peter Scott says that some tough decisions will need to be made about partners who do not pull their weight.
Legal Week - Oct 2001

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Survival of the fittest

Under-performing partners can spell danger for law firms, especially in times of economic downturn. Peter Scott looks at what’s involved and suggests ways to resolve the problems before it’s too late.
Managing For Success (The Law Society) - Sep 2001

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No place like home

Firms should concentrate on developing their domestic practices instead of indulging in European empire building.
Legal Week - Aug 2001

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Do you have a lazy partner?

Almost every firm in the country has a partner who is not performing - but their colleagues are failing to take them to task.
The Law Society Gazette - Jul 2001

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What are you worth?

‘So why do we need you?’ is a question to send a shiver down the spines of many in-house lawyers.
Legal Director - Jun 2001

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Take the risk?

Risk is an inherent part of a solicitor's everyday business, but there are procedures that can be put in place to keep your liability safely out of harm's reach.
The Lawyer - Jun 2001

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Strategies for success

The love affair between US law firms and London shows no sign of abating. The issue for US law firms that are newcomers to the UK market is how they position themselves. It is critical to whether they succeed.
Legal Week - Jun 2001

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Leaders must have slimline tonic

With firms ensnared in the salary war, Peter Scott calls for decisive leadership to keep quality staff and to tackle underperforming partners.
The Law Society Gazette - Apr 2001

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Opinion

A revolution was set in motion on 6 April 2001 when the Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) Act 2000 came into force, but it had very little to do with the limited liability issues in which the legislation has its origins.
The Lawyer - Apr 2001

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Time to face up to the web

Managing partners need to develop more effective e-business strategies, Peter Scott argues, otherwise their clients may go elsewhere.
Legal Week - Mar 2001

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Killing the golden goose

Firms should think about removing unproductive partners and tightening up financial controls now, while times are good, argues Peter Scott As law firms are reporting all-time record profits, more ominous clouds are gathering.
The Law Society Gazette - Jan 2001

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Preventing another riot

Peter Scott reviews the findings of Eversheds’ poll into views about the City riot and discovers that most people would want the police to have a firmer response if a repeat were to occur.
Legal Week - Aug 1999

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Client Relationships: Carving out a clean break

Peter Scott, management consultant at Howarth Consulting, offers tips on how to terminate the relationship effectively with your law firm. Serious damage can be done to the business if it is not handled properly.
Legal Week -

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In-House Practice Exposed!

Tips on Getting to the Top of the In-house Heap.
Of Counsel -

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Recruitment: How to get to the top as an in-house lawyer

Peter Scott charts the course for success as an in-house corporate lawyer.
Legal Week -

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Practice Management Handbook 2nd edition

Practice Management Handbook 2nd edition
Edited by Peter Scott

Planning and implementing an effective practice management strategy is a key factor in establishing a law firm's long-term prospects. This fully updated edition continues to offer invaluable practical advice on how to develop and implement strategic plans for every aspect of a firm.
Find out more and order a copy.
Read a review of the book on YouTube


Winning Firm Alliance

PDF - Winning Firm Alliance

Members of the Winning Firm Alliance work with professional service firms to help transform their performance.