Why do good people leave?

It’s a question most law firms ask around this time of the year. It’s January and typically, last year’s annual bonuses have paid out and firms are bracing for the departure of great attorneys. Sometimes the departures are welcomed by firm leadership and other times it becomes a huge problem that needs to be addressed.

How do we keep the talent we want?

Culture is more than collegiality, pay structure, respect, and kindness; it’s about the person. Do your attorneys know their future? Do firm leaders continually remind employees of their career path, its value to the firm, and its importance to the individual? Law firms spend a ton of money and time finding and attracting talent. But are you spending enough time and money retaining talented attorneys that are the future leaders of your firm? Are you giving your attorneys resources to be successful? Have you asked what tools, conferences, and training attorneys need in order to develop skill sets and be more valuable in the market? And, are you paying for those tools?

As a recruiter that specializes in placing lawyers, I’ve found that the most challenging candidates to recruit are those that know where their career is going. They know the work they’re doing is valuable to the firm, it is appreciated, and they have constant reinforcement that they matter. This is also reflected in their compensation.

Given the demand in the market, employees can go anywhere. Invest so much time into people that they know this attention won’t exist elsewhere. The reality is people will find whatever they are missing on another platform. Don’t lose, win!