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October 07 Businessexcellence 41 recovery program, ensuring the safety of its employees and the integrity of client data and continuity of client service. “I really created the chief administrative offi cer position at the fi rm,” she explains. “In the last six years, I have done a lot of reengineering of the administrative organizational structure, the marketing and IT departments.” Her style, she says, is to lead by example. “We have a democratic fi rm where people have a say in what’s going on. I do have a lot of autonomy in my position— all the administrative departments report to me and I report to the managing partner. We like to empower people to do their jobs, promote people from within, and encourage people to stay. The departmental managers and directors have the authority to make decisions in the day to day management of their department, and I encourage them to do that.” Companies in other sectors often need a complete culture change to embrace new business processes, but at a fi rm with the longevity of Kenyon & Kenyon, where neither the culture nor the processes are broken, there’s no need for a revolutionary fi x. It’s more a case of adapting to suit the times. “Many of our people have been here from the inception of their careers,” says Bey, “and they retire after 40 or 45 years of service. The culture has grown and evolved with the times and with the quality and commitment of our staff. But in terms of changing the culture to stay with the times, we’ve addressed work-life balance issues, sensitivity to family needs, diversity in the workplace and we’re always looking for ways to improve the quality of life at the fi rm. We have tried to create more friendly hours for people with young children; we have built a room for nursing mothers and added a child day care program to our staff benefi ts. We’ve tried to address the needs of different cultures and lifestyles. We have a strong commitment to cultural diversity and to the promotion of women in business. We dedicate signifi cant time to pro bono work and community services, and support many charities and medical causes.” Everything is done electronically today, of course, too, including fi lings with the court and the patent and trademark offi ce. Clients have extranets where they can look at their documents. “We’ve also embraced advanced practice support technologies in imaging of documents,” says Bey, “and we create customized databases for clients. Litigations can have hundreds of thousands of documents. Organizing them electronically saves time and money.” Another benefi t for clients is Kenyon & Kenyon’s modern approach to billing. Changes in billing started to evolve when client companies began to set up in-house legal departments, Bey explains, and technology has now made online e-billing more common. “For a client where we do a signifi cant number of patent or trademark applications, we may establish a fi xed fee arrangement with them where we charge so much for a fi ling. For other clients we have discount programs based on volumes of business. Our rates are very competitive, and we customize the billing program to suit the client’s needs. It’s a very individual thing; we work with the client to make sure they are satisfi ed and comfortable with the process, and I work with the people here to make sure the process meets our needs, because we are a business.” Lawyers can be fl exible, too. “We also accommodate clients by sending our lawyers to work at their own offi ces. We have arrangements with some clients where one of our lawyers goes to the client’s offi ce one or two days a week, or they ‘borrow’ one of our lawyers for a period of time because they want the person to work closely with their in-house team.” Kenyon & Kenyon’s expansion since the1980s has included the addition of offi ces in Washington DC and San Jose, California, in the heart of Silicon Valley. While further geographic expansion is not ruled out, it does not seem to be imminent. “We can service our clients in the whole of the US and beyond from our three offi ces,” she says, “but we are always open to expanding depending upon clients’ demands and new industry areas. We have looked into several opportunities.” Caution is the watchword here. There Kenyon&Kenyon With over 40 years of legal recruiting experience, Hughes Consultants, LLC has gained a national client base of Fortune 500 companies and Am Law 200 law fi rms. As leaders in legal search, our main objective is serving our clients. We are committed to excellence in all areas of recruitment including our people, our methods, and our relationships. Hughes Consultants For more than 40 years, Jamison has been specializing in the insurance and risk management needs of law fi rms. We fi rmly believe that limiting our clients’ risks, protecting their fi nancial strength and enhancing the security of their professional and personal lives has been the key to our success. This is why, when law fi rms seek prudent coverages and critical risk management advice, many of the nation’s fi nest have come to rely on Jamison’s depth of experience and broad industry resources. Jamison

are stories of law fi rms over the past 10 or 15 years spending a fortune opening new offi ces in the US or overseas, and then having to close them because they failed to make the revenues. “We don’t go with the rest of them,” says Bey. With over 40 percent of its revenues derived from overseas, expansion abroad is not ruled out, either, but again, it’s not on the immediate agenda. “We’re addressing our foreign clients’ needs through alliance fi rms in other countries,” explains Bey. “It’s an exchange, really, because those fi rms also have work they need done in the US. We foster relationships with associates in virtually every industrial country in the world.” It’s not about presence, she explains, but expertise. “We have the expertise, we have multilingual lawyers and we have an in-house translation department, but when it comes to fi ling a patent application in Japan we’re not going to go over there to do it. We work with a local Japanese fi rm.” The relationship between law fi rms and the corporations they represent has changed signifi cantly in recent years, Bey tells me. “Legal fi rms are often hired through an RFP (request for proposal) process these days and clients look at a lot of different criteria. One is pricing. Others are quality of services, special skills, fl exibility, and diversity.” Although the lawyers still need to be top class, many of the other criteria fall within Bey’s remit. “After being here for seven years, working closely with the managing partner and governing committees, and being instrumental in structuring many of the administrative departments, I pretty much have my hand on the pulse of things,” she concludes. 42 Businessexcellence October 07 Kenyon&Kenyon Builders Group As one of the most successful law fi rms in the US, Kenyon & Kenyon has disability income replacement needs exceeding those of many other fi rms. TBG is proud to have implemented an innovative plan to meet those needs. Law fi rm partnerships operate differently from other businesses, and TBG provides a higher level of broker understanding to meet their requirements. TBG