This was one of the questions Paul Boynton asked me on a recent podcast. My response was “no, but that is an interesting possibility.”
As I thought about it later, there is no reason a general counsel can’t ask a responsible partner who does a lot of work for the company to explain (1) what the firm has investigated about offshoring, (2) why offshoring would not help lower costs in a matter, and (3) what could be done to integrate offshoring into similar matters in the future.
Such a series of questions don’t intrude as much as some of the beyond-the-pale interventions in law firm management (See my post of Aug. 4, 2008: interventions with three posts and 40 references.).
I wrote an article, too: “When Interventions Go Too Far” (NY LJ., Feb. 28, 2008).
Yet pointed questions force relationship partners to think about what they might not have considered or even would prefer to ignore, such as budgets, performance against milestones, and staffing. Good questions, as Socrates taught us, help us think.