“When you come to a fork in the road, take it.” That turn of phrase from the late Yogi Berra, while amusing, contains a great deal of wisdom. Law firms are at the point where they need to re-examine their cost structures, business practices and the design of their workplaces.
In our final post of this series, we consider: Should law firms take the bold step of significantly redesigning their offices, as many have done with great success, to attract and retain the best of the new generation of attorneys who will be their revenue generators for years to come? Should they instead retain the traditional office design and firm hierarchy that have provided motivation and incentives for attorneys for more than a century and have worked well for many … until now?
The jury is still out because there really is no absolute answer or one-size-fits-all solution. Some firms have successfully embraced change management and bold new workplace strategies that are in fact attracting and retaining top talent. Others have retained their traditional office designs that they feel better fit their businesses and cultures.
That said, our experience in helping our clients make and implement these decisions — as well as a large body of research — suggest that law firms would do well by addressing the new economy and the wants and needs of the new generation of attorneys — the millennials — who will be their revenue generators for the foreseeable future, and redesign their law offices accordingly.
Further, we suggest you don’t wait too long to make these decisions. Because before you know it, the post-millennial generation — Generation Z — will be entering the workforce. Which means that you will one day come to another fork in the road and have to make crucial decisions on how you can continue to foster the great work that builds profitability and client satisfaction.
As President of National Office Services, Cynthia leads Colliers’ national office platform across service lines including office leasing, representing tenants and landlords, investment sales, leasing agency and property management.