Measuring and Managing Performance for Law Firms

Measuring and Managing Performance for Law Firms is essential reading for any law firm leader looking to build on their successes while boosting, or maintaining, their overall performance and ultimately profitability.

Additional taxes may be applicable


  • Publication date: April, 2017
  • ISBN: 978-1-78358-284-6


Lawyers are no strangers to performance metrics: from billable hours to PEP statistics and hours billed. However, firm-wide performance metrics are hard to tackle – not only are the numerous aspects often intangible and difficult to measure, but they can differ between firms, practice areas, and individual roles.

Ark Groups new book - Measuring and Managing Performance for Law Firms offers an in-depth overview of the metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) that firms can employ to effectively measure and manage their workforce and firm-wide performance.

With contributions from a wide-range of law firm leaders and experts working in the legal sphere, this new book covers a range of thought-provoking topics, from metrics that stimulate innovative thinking to effectively managing high-performance teams and dealing with stress in the workplace, and implementing “balanced scorecards” and “opportunity scoring assessments” to track firm performance and effectively utilize internal information resources.

Measuring and Managing Performance for Law Firms also includes a series of chapters that focuses on managing a firm’s talent and teams to boost performance.

This new book is essential reading for any law firm leader looking to build on their successes while boosting, or maintaining, their overall performance and ultimately profitability.


Executive Summary

About the authors

Chapter 1: Made to measure – Collecting and providing meaningful management information

By Tony Brown, owner of AGB Legal

  • Real-time information
  • Single view 
  • Lending agreed

Chapter 2: Applying the balanced scorecard in a law firm environment – Opportunities and challenges

By John Sterling, founding partner of Sterling Strategies, LLC

  • Nature of the opportunity
  • Challenges to adopting balanced scorecards in law firms

Chapter 3: Utilizing multiple intelligence sources to create an opportunity scoring assessment

By Patrick Fuller, vice president of business development for Neota Logic, Inc

  • Setting the foundations – Metrics and scope
  • Legal intelligence platforms
  • Relationships and connections
  • Experience 
  • Finance, pricing, and profitability 

Chapter 4: Practical strategies for improving cash flow

By Barry Wilkinson, founder of Wilkinson Read and Partners

  • Information and performance management
  • Key performance indicators
  • Project management of larger files
  • An information calendar                                                                       

Chapter 5: Measuring the unmeasurable – KPIs for your people strategy

By Jill King, consultant and the former global HR director at Linklaters

  • Profitable resourcing
  • Quality of new recruits
  • Investment in knowledge and learning
  • Diversity and inclusion
  • Motivation and engagement
  • International reach
  • Managing KPIs                                                                                                                       

Chapter 6: Unusual metrics to stimulate innovative action                            

By Patrick J Mckenna, internationally recognized author, lecturer, strategist, and seasoned advisor to the leaders of premier professional service firms

  • Metric #1: Management time spent exploring new opportunities
  • Metric #2: Number of new revenue ideas, practice areas, and/or client services launched in the past year
  • Metric #3: Number of distinctive attributes that clients actually value
  • Metric #4: Time invested growing our individual and collective know-how
  • Metric #5: Effectiveness of meetings                                                                        

Chapter 7: Four ways to channel creative tension in firms and teams

By Nick Jarrett-Kerr, a member of Edge International, a leading global consultancy to law firms

  • One – Harnessing the power of multiple perspectives
  • Two – Commitment to a shared vision
  • Three – Engender mutual respect
  • Four – Effective ways of resolving disagreements
  • Arriving at a result                                                                                                  

Chapter 8: Lived values – How to create an ethical high-performance culture

By Christopher Smith, managing director of Bath Consultancy Group, a division of GP Strategies

  • Good citizenship
  • Leadership priorities
  • Citizen leaders                                                                                                                       

Chapter 9: Avoiding burnout – Stress management in high-pressure law firms

By Jill King, consultant and the former global HR director at Linklaters

  • Physiology of stress
  • Impact on firms
  • Stress management program
  • Coping strategies
  • Peak performance                                                                                                               

Chapter 10: Breaking point – Creating a resilient mindset leads to a high performance culture

By Jeremy Snape, founder and director of Sporting Edge

  • Impact of stress on lawyers and legal teams
  • Pressure points for lawyers
  • Pressure testing
  • Help individuals first
  • Build team culture                                                                                                                
Full Contents and Summary


Patrick J McKenna
Patrick J. McKenna is an internationally recognized author, lecturer, strategist, and seasoned advisor to the leaders of premier professional service firms, and he has also had the honour of working with at least one of the largest firms in over a dozen different countries. Patrick is the author of numerous books, most notably his international business bestseller, First Among Equals (currently in its sixth printing and translated into nine languages). His consulting expertise was acknowledged in 2008, when he was identified through independent research compiled and published by Lawdragon as “one of the most trusted names in legal consulting”, and his three decades of experience led to his being the subject of a Harvard Law School Case Study entitled ‘Innovations In Legal Consulting’ (2011). One example of that innovation was his launching the first instructional program designed to specifically address the issues that new firm leaders of larger firms face in their first 100 days – which has thus far graduated over 70 new leaders many from AmLaw 100 and 200-sized law firms, as well as from notable accounting and consulting firms. He is the only expert in professional service firms admitted to the Association of Corporate Executive Coaches, the #1 US group for senior level CEO coaches; and was acknowledged in 2014 by The American Lawyer magazine as ‘a long time succession consultant and coach to new firm leaders’.
Nick Jarrett-Kerr
Nick Jarrett-Kerr is a specialist advisor to law firms and professional services firms worldwide on issues of strategy, governance and leadership development. Nick is a member of Edge International, a leading global consultancy to law firms, and in the last twelve years has established himself as one of the leading UK and international advisors. Prior to becoming a consultant, Nick was the Chief Executive Partner of Bevan Ashford, a leading regional firm in Great Britain, for eight years. Nick is the author of two published books on partner underperformance and law firm strategy, and is currently Visiting Professor at Nottingham Trent University where he leads the strategy modules for the Nottingham Law School MBA.
John Sterling
John Sterling is chief marketing offi cer at Sterne Kessler Goldstein & Fox, a leading IP specialty fi rm based in Washington, DC. He is also the founding partner of Sterling Strategies, LLC. Prior to founding Sterling Strategies, John was a founding partner at Smock Sterling Strategic Management Consultants. He has over 30 years of experience in strategic management and market research. John has worked extensively with law and other professional service fi rms, as well as with industrial and consumer product companies and not-for-profi t organisations. His work with TimeLine Theatre Company in Chicago won the Richard Goodman Strategic Planning Award for excellence in strategic planning from the Association for Strategic Planning. John is past president of the Strategic Management Association in Chicago and is a contributing editor to the business journal Strategy & Leadership.
Tony Brown
Owner of AGB Legal
Patrick Fuller
Patrick Fuller is the vice president of business development for Neota Logic, Inc., based in New York City. With nearly 20 years of experience in the legal profession, Patrick is often referred to as one of the leading experts and pioneers in legal competitive intelligence (CI), particularly in the art of translating big data into intelligence for business development (BD) and organizational strategy purposes. Previously, Patrick served as the director of legal analytics for TyMetrix and ELM Solutions, helping legal departments to design and implement analytics and metrics management strategies. Prior to joining TyMetrix, he served as the vice president of product & market strategy for legal technology company Content Pilot. Additionally, Patrick was a senior consultant in the Client Growth Strategy practice with LawVision Group as well as an adjunct consultant with Hildebrandt Consulting, after serving as the global managing director of the Monitor Suite competitive intelligence platform he helped launch for Thomson Reuters Hubbard One. Patrick began his career in the legal industry with Martindale-Hubbell.
Jill King
Jill King is a business writer and commentator, having spent over 20 years working in the professional services sector. She is interested in what makes people tick, how to unleash potential and creativity, and in the fundamental changes affecting the professions. As a leading HR professional, specialising in people and communications, Jill has experience in the fast-moving consumer goods, retailing, engineering, accountancy and legal sectors. She has led regional and global HR, L&D, and knowledge and communication teams, as the HR director at KPMG, Hogan Lovells (formerly Lovell White Durrant) and most recently, Linklaters. Jill can be reached via email or at her website.
Barry Wilkinson
Barry Wilkinson specialises in helping medium-sized law firms to improve their business performance – producing better results for partners, staff, and clients. In a varied career he has been a cost accountant, business lecturer, finance director, professional speaker, author and, for the last 20 years, a management consultant and business coach. Barry is best known as ‘one of the few non-lawyers who can make lawyers sit up and listen’, and for his ability to help law firms improve their cash flow, profits, and client satisfaction. His clients say that his key ability is to give them the confidence to tackle the real challenges which face firms today, and to get partners to move forward together. He has written many articles on legal business topics, and he was also the author of the first edition of Cash Management for Law Firms in 2009. Barry is the founder of Wilkinson Read and Partners, an executive committee member of the Law Society’s Law Management Section, and a former branch president of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA). For more information on Wilkinson Read, see the website or contact Barry via email.
Jeremy Snape
Founder and director of Sporting Edge
Christopher Smith
Managing director of Bath Consultancy Group, a division of GP Strategies

You may also be interested in..

Think about attending..