Law Firm Articles

Pay Proportional to Performance

Getting pay decisions done well is rarely an easy task.  There are competing interests between those lawyers who primarily acquire clients and those who focus on practicing law – setting up the age-old debate regarding the relative value of each.  Moreover, those competing interests appear across a broad profitability spectrum.

Unfortunately, the challenges increase when a law firm has either very little or a great deal of money to distribute.  At the low end of profitability, there are competing needs of collegiality and a sense of partnership that suggest a flattening of the pay range, set against the risk of competitor poaching of high-performers that may necessitate a broader range of pay.  At the upper end of profitability, the human emotion – greed – tends to display its unpleasantness.

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