The Agile Law Firm
Being able to adapt smartly to client needs, competitor threats and employee expectations are at the core of this report, which is built around a self-assessment tool and practical framework for implementing Agile.
This Special Report is the essential guide for every law firm leader who wants to move beyond the reactive to the strategic adoption of proven agile principles. Being able to adapt smartly to client needs, competitor threats and employee expectations are at the core of this report, which is built around a self-assessment tool and practical framework for implementing Agile.
This Special Report covers:
+ What is Agile and how has it been used across industries? Explores the most important uses of agile thinking and models, from those that have transformed the worlds of technology, consumer products and complex projects, to the hybrid agile working model that many law firms seek to adopt post-Covid-19;
+ Why Agile? Looks at where adopting agile principles in your firm will make a difference and how these ideas connect with client value, digital transformation, innovation and collaboration;
+ Where can we utilise Agile in law firms? Examines the different parts of a law firm and explains which agile models and tools can be used where, using legal sector case studies;
+ How Agile are you? Outlines a practical diagnostic for assessing your level of agility in each area of the firm; and
+ What next? Covers planning and implementing an agile programme, from mindset and language change to organisational design and client engagement.
The report also provides examples of Agile programme outlines for law firms large and small which can be adapted depending on individual needs. In short, this report includes everything law firm leaders need to get started on their own agile journey.
Table of Contents
|Table of Contents||3|
|I. Welcome to the Agile world||5|
|1. The Agile imperative||5|
|2. The Agile organisation||7|
|3. The Agile mindset||10|
|4. How this Special Report works||11|
|5. A word about you||13|
|6. A brief history of Agile||15|
|7. Ten attributes of the Agile organisation||21|
|8. The limitations of Agile||23|
|9. Introducing the Agile law firm||25|
|1. Clients at the centre||33|
|2. Legal project management||41|
|3. Legal project management today||44|
|4. The role of the legal project manager||58|
|5. Implementing LPM – should we apply LPM essentials to every client matter?||59|
|6. Implementing LPM – how do we get our people engaged with LPM training?||61|
|III. Constantly innovating and improving||65|
|1. Introducing innovation||65|
|2. Lean and Six Sigma||77|
|2. The insight-driven firm||84|
|3. Is data your ‘new oil’?||87|
|V. Highly autonomous teams||109|
|1. Agile and the liquid workforce||109|
|2. Designing the Agile network of teams||111|
|3. Evolving teams into Agile teams||113|
|VI. The human dimension||121|
|1. Valuing individuals||121|
|2. Becoming more human in the 2020s||123|
|3. Rethinking our relationship with employees – adopting the EACH model||126|
|4. The servant leader||130|
|5. Agile performance management||131|
|6. How Agile teams and project management enhance your human dimension||133|
|VII. Fluid and flexible (workplace and workforce)||135|
|1. The legal workplace and workforce reimagined||135|
|2. Embracing Hybrid/Agile working||139|
|VIII. Organically collaborative||149|
|1. Network and platform organisations||149|
|2. Collaborate to grow – the Agile growth strategy||151|
|IX. Restless, radical and challenging||157|
|1. Strategic agility||157|
|2. The competitive imperative||165|
|3. A new anatomy for your law firm – fit for the future||170|
|4. Agile governance||173|
|5. The next generation C-suite||176|
|1. Digital transformation||185|
|2. The impact of technology on legal work||188|
|XI. United by a common purpose||195|
|1. Aligning with purpose||195|
|2. Purpose into practice – being Agile about becoming Agile||196|
|3. What now?||199|
|About the author||205|
|About Globe Law and Business||207|
Our world has radically changed, and law firms inevitably will change along with it. The law firm of the near future will be client-centric, flexible, intrapreneurial, and continuously improving -- in a word, it will be Agile. In this landmark book, Chris Bull has not only assembled a comprehensive step-by-step guide to building an Agile law firm, but has issued a clarion call for lawyers to apply the principles and aspirations of Agility to the mission of law firms and the vision of the legal profession. Managing partners looking for a blueprint to the post-pandemic law firm need look no further.
Principal, Law21; Author, Law Is A Buyer's Market: Building a Client-First Law Firm
Borrowing from the contemporary lean and agile principles used to optimise development and production processes, Chris Bull’s The Agile Law Firm succeeds in providing a practical manual for law firm leaders. This easy-to-read book argues why and how traditional law firms of all sizes need to embrace deep changes to enable them to continue to serve clients and prosper. The legal services ecosystem is evolving rapidly; to stand still is to go backwards and eventually lose touch with what clients and staff alike want from an effective law firm.
Dr George Beaton
Author of NewLaw New Rules and senior co-author of Remaking Law Firms
Chris has a huge amount of valuable experience in every aspect of running a law firm - it is great to see him focus on a strategically important area like this. An essential read for everyone involved in law firm leadership in these changing times.
Founder and CEO, Hyperscale Group Limited
Engagingly written, fast-paced and comprehensive, Chris Bull's new book The Agile Law Firm provides an essential blueprint for any law firm wanting to succeed in the second decade of the 21st century. Agility is the key and Chris clearly explains its significant concepts and methodologies, providing the reader with a practical toolkit to bring about positive change, no matter the size and nature of their organisation.
Former president of The Law Society of England and Wales and strategic consultant
Principal, Edge International
Chris Bull is a management consultant, retained adviser, business thinker and speaker focused on transforming the legal services sector. Throughout his career he has been one of the leading pioneers of alternative business models and transformation in the sector. His roles include COO and Chief Executive at mould-breaking law firm Osborne Clarke and COO for Europe & the Americas at alternative legal service provider Integreon. Chris has worked at all four of the Big 4 accounting firms and has advised on a series of high-profile alternative business structure launches in the UK for clients including KPMG and LegalZoom. Back in the early 2000s he was introducing open-plan agile offices, central transformation teams, process redesign practices and shared service centres into the law firm model, years before most UK or US law firms considered them.
His legal consulting career began in 2011 and he has advised, often in a retained role, multiple law firms and professional service organisations in the UK, North America and Asia as part of Edge International’s strategy consulting team.
Chris has become one of the busiest speakers and chairs at legal business and innovation events. He is a judge for many legal sector awards, including British Legal Technology Awards and Modern Law Awards. He chairs the Legal COO Network and co-chairs the Bristol+BathLegalTech collaborative organisation, helping to steer what a 2021 independent report cited as a leading global legal tech cluster. His previous publications include The Legal Process Improvement Toolkit and Law Firms in the Digital Age.