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A Primer for Partners: How To Screw Associates Out of Pay Raises

100 dollar bill Above the Law Above the Law law firm salary legal blog legal tabloid Above the Law.JPGGreedy law firm associates view ATL as a helpful resource. But what about Biglaw partners? They’re greedy too, y’know.
Well, here’s something for all you partners out there. A tipster alerted us to this audio conference, taking place later this month:




September 20, 2007 * 2:00 – 3:30 PM


The full conference description, plus commentary, after the jump.

The conference description starts off:

Associate compensation has increased to unprecedented levels. And partners are beginning to protest that the cost to them personally–as much as $70,000 a year per partner in some firms–is getting out of hand.

What a crisis! And what about the couple hundred bucks that partners must shell out to their secretaries each year, around the holidays and/or Administrative Professionals Day? Where’s the audio conference on STRATEGIES TO ATTACK SECRETARIAL GIFTS THAT DRAIN PARTNER PROFITS?

Law firm leaders agree that now’s the time to explore alternatives to the traditional “follow-the-leader” approach to associate pay. This interactive audio conference offers you alternatives used by successful law firms across the country.

Associate salaries have again increased from an average of $145,000 to $160,000 at major law firms across the country. Large law firms have played “follow the leader” with associate compensation for many years, but the situation still begs the question: What can firms do to avoid breaking the bank with associate pay and still recruit and retain top talent?

Like admit that you’re a second-tier firm?
(Look, there’s nothing wrong with that. Not every firm can be a Cravath or an S&C. So why does everyone try to pay their people, or at least their first-years, like the big boys in New York? It’s a fair question, even for folks who generally support higher associate compensation.)

A recent analysis suggests that in large firms where average per-partner profits run about $2.4 million a year, each partner will take a personal annual hit of $40,000 to $70,000 to fund associate salary increases.

Quelle horreur! Partners taking in almost two and a half million a year, being forced to pay out three percent of their draw to the proletariat? What injustice!

Leaders in firms of all sizes must confront runaway associate pay strategies and the long-term impact on firm revenue, partner profits, billing rates, client satisfaction, and more.

Join IOMA for this candid interactive discussion of what it takes to mitigate the bottom line impact of rising associate salaries for partners and law firms as a whole.

In just 90 minutes, you’ll learn:

*How to set associate compensation levels that mesh with your firm’s long-range strategy

*How firms can avoid the natural fallout created when partners are expected to finance exorbitant associate pay hikes

“Exorbitant” indeed. Think of all those associates you’ve seen, their gold teeth flashing in the sun as they tool around in Lamborghinis.

*What works to alleviate common problems, like pay compression

Like raising salaries for midlevel and senior associates?
(Oh wait, we misread that. To partners threatened by rising associate salaries, compression is a solution, not a problem…)

*What savvy law firms are providing–other than cash–to enhance their recruiting and retention positions among competing firms

Let them eat cake! And drink unlimited Swiss Miss.
Oh, and give the associates chair massages. They’re suckers for chair massages.

*Why more firms are turning to merit-based pay, two-tiered partnerships, and other “non-traditional” compensation options

*How your peers and competitors are confronting ancillary issues relating to associate compensation

“[A]ncillary issues,” such as the marital discord created when $2.5 million partners must fork over $50,000 to their associates.
The Biglaw partner’s wife needs that cash for a second car at the Hamptons place. And if she doesn’t get it — or, at the very least, a front-loading washing machine — she’s divorcing your sorry ass.


*Law firm administrators
*Managing partners
*Law firm partners who serve on management and compensation committees
*Recruiting and career professionals in the law firm space

And, of course, Greedy Partner SOBs.


AND–when you register for the audio conference, you can purchase a CD recording of the session for only $99 more!

So, does this come with CLE credit? If so, what type — Practice Management?
Or maybe Skills credit. Since screwing over associates is a valuable skill, which any Biglaw partner ought to have.
Associate Compensation: Strategies to Attack Pay Plans that Drain Partner Profits [IOMA]

(hidden for your protection)

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