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Sounding Board Service

Merger Preparation

Board Advisory

The reasons for starting or joining a boutique firm often include:

  • To be able to fix or reduce charge out rates – to more competitive levels for the niche that they like or want to operate in – usually it is a more margin sensitive area that is under fee pressure in their larger firm;

  • To get away from a variety of frustrations – including a lack of promotion despite a healthy client base, or being stuck with colleagues that they don’t want or can’t work with or lack of flexibility or hours;

  • To eliminate a fatal conflict by the greater firm with a key personal client – As firms are getting larger, and especially in the situation of global firms, conflicts are increasingly becoming a problem.

Boutique law firm benefits include:

  • Flexibility – less accountability re hours etc.

  • Freedom to be nimble to meet client market demands;

  • The thrill of starting and being in your own firm and controlling your own destiny;

  • Higher earnings when compared to larger firm – this is universally the case;

  • Ability to obtain referrals from larger firms that are conflicted out of taking on certain work.

Some of the drawbacks of boutique firms include:

  • Difficulty taking holidays;

  • Being on demand 24/7;

  • Increase in administration of the firm and less infrastructure to support you;

  • Lack of holidays and breaks can lead to health issues and relationship challenges;

  • Challenges with recruiting lawyers due to lack of brand or size or depth of opportunities.

If you know your earnings are only limited by your effort then there can be a temptation to go hard and find yourself not able to slow down when you want to.  Don’t be afraid to take stock every few years and reconsider your priorities and motivators in view of any changes to your life circumstances.  Make sure that you weigh up the non-financial factors as well as the financial.

The lure of being master of your own destiny has the trade-off of also limiting your freedom in other ways such as not being free from your business due to lack of support and resources. 

We can help you etc etc

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