We’re on hiatus . . .

In case it’s not obvious, we’re on hiatus. No important reason . . . just working on other things. We’ll be back with more ranting when time permits.

In the meantime, be nice to each other and enjoy this lovely photo of a bench near Bürstegg Lech, in Vorarlberg, Austria. (Photo credit: Basotxerri. Link on Wikimedia Commons. Enough CC attribution for you?)

Bench near Bürstegg. Lech. Vorarlberg, Austria

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Eliminate Billable Hours from Performance Evaluations

We missed this announcement from Jackson Lewis (a large national employment law firm) in November, 2014, stating that an associate’s billable hours will no longer be taken into account in his or her performance evaluations. We applaud this decision, and hope to see this factor removed from partner-level evaluations (read: profit participation determinations) as well.

Individuals in any organization ought to be evaluated on the basis of accomplishments, not time spent. Is this harder to do? Of course.

How should accomplishments be evaluated? Hint: ask your customers who receive the service and are in the best position to evaluate its worth.

We’ll answer. We promise.

No Good Deed . . .

Here’s an example of a great company (Hyatt Hotels) getting completely hosed for going overboard to help a disabled employee. The employee expresses his gratitude by suing his employer. Thousands of wasted defense dollars later, thank goodness the 7th circuit saw this for what it was: complete nonsense.
Read the opinion here.

 

Useless Advice

If your firm goes to the trouble of researching, drafting and publishing an article on a legal development, and you fail to include any practical advice other than, “Be sure to consult legal counsel before [insert reason we bothered reading your article in the first place],” you’ve lost an opportunity to impress us.

Pushing risk across the table

We came across this excellent post by Patrick J. Lamb at In Search of Perfect Client Service awhile ago, and recently passed it on to colleagues whose outside counsel are doing the “alternative fee shuffle”.  We’re all kidding ourselves when we define “alternative fees” as “anything that’s not straight hourly rates.”  As Patrick says: Continue reading