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Fit the position and roles to the person, not the other way around

Quite a few positions in law departments end up being molded to the lawyer’s background, preferences, and styles (See my post of March 16, 2006 on A-positions more than A-players.). This makes sense because “It turns out that a surprisingly high percentage of jobs are idiosyncratic, created, designed and customized to fit the preferences and skills of some unique person,” in the words of Jeffrey Pfeffer and Robert I. Sutton, Hard Facts, Dangerous Half-Truths & Total Nonsense: Profiting from Evidence-Based Management (Harvard Bus. School Press 2006) at 81.

A high-performance law department might not comfortably be described by a traditional org chart. The gifted manager in a law department makes the most of the talent available, shifting and adjusting responsibilities and workloads to best match positions and roles to the paralegal or lawyer.

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