Embedding LPM is about achieving behavioural change.
So what’s involved in trying to change what people do? I ask Susan Raridon
Lambreth, Principal at the LawVision
Group LLC and chair of the Legal Project Management Institute,
to share her views in this post.
9 keys to embedding LPM include:
that this is a significant change management initiative. [As an aside, that is really how I got into
this area. I helped many of the AmLaw
200 firms — about half — implement practice group management including getting
partner buy-in, aligning compensation incentives, etc. This is now taking the management down to the
matter level). For a change initiative
to be successful, you need to build the business case – that business as usual
is not sustainable. You need to have
champions and a core group to lead the initiative – as I will describe more
with a pilot group or several (probably no more than 3). While a few firms started with a top-down
approach, most have started with two or three matter teams that were interested
in changing the way they work. Each
pilot needs at least one champion.
possible, provide coaches to the matter teams to provide advice, hold them
accountable, push them toward their goals, etc.
one or more of the pilots "take off"/are successful, communicate that
to the rest of the firm. In some firms,
this has been through partner retreats for example. Use success to generate more interest in
additional pilots or more widespread adoption.
the "volunteers" - lawyers who want to be part of training, rather
than forcing the reluctant sceptics to do it -- at least for the first round of
you have the right resources, get your internal trainers trained to be trainers
and coaches to sustain the initiative.
the compensation/remuneration incentives to support (or at least not dis-incentivise)
LPM. For example, some firms are adding
matter profitability to their metrics for individual partner compensation –
rather than just gross revenues they generate.
a multi-disciplinary group leading the initiative – representing
finance/pricing, IT, BD, practice management, LPM (if you have them), business
intelligence (if not already in finance or BD), etc. LPM can and should be an approach that builds
bridges across any silos on the professional management side of the firm if
they exist and the final key,
management support is important and preferred but some firms have been
successful initially without a lot of firm management support.
Thanks so much Susan. I really liked your point about building
the business case to help others ‘see the light.’ Remember to keep following as
we continue to share insights from global industry leaders on how to make LPM
part of daily practice life.