2014 Nobel in Economics

Around this time of year the Nobel Prize in Economics is awarded, and while we don’t always cover it here on Adam Smith, Esq., this year’s is worth a note. As everyone who cares about these things an iota knows by now, the winner was Jean Tirole of Toulouse University in France, for his work
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Articles, Just Plain Interesting, Strategy

Partners Behaving Badly

The other day we were in a meeting with the head of strategy and marketing and the Chair of an AmLaw 100, and the Chair mentioned an extremely promising introductory meeting he’d had a few days earlier with the General Counsel of a well-recognized company. Although the GC and the Chair had never met, the company already
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Articles, Client Relationships, Compensation, Cultural Considerations, Leadership, Practice Group Management, Strategy


A few weeks ago reports surfaced about a motion seeking to compel Norton Rose Fulbright to withdraw from representation of its client Duke University in a case brought against the university by the estate of John Wayne, which wants the right to market alcoholic beverages branded with Wayne’s “Duke” nickname—a textbook trademark dispute. The Wayne
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Articles, Branding, Business Models, Client Relationships, Leadership, M&A, Marketing, Partnership Structures, Strategy

Watson, I Presume?

I’m often asked—on a panel last month in Europe and on a panel later this month right here in New York at the Law Firm COO & CFO Forum, for example—what I think about “disruption” in the legal industry. Bypassing the obversation that it’s a large and amorphous question, it immediately seems to summon forth
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Articles, Technology strategy

Letter from Near and Far

Gentle Reader: Apologies for not having published more frequently over the past couple of weeks but business has taken us to Paris, the south of France, London, Portland, and Seattle–with 48 hours in New York inbetween the European and the Pacific Northwest trips. We met with firms ranging from the Magic and Silver Circle to US-based
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Articles, Business Models, Compensation, Cultural Considerations, Finance, Leadership, Partnership Structures, Practice Group Management, Strategy


Whether or not the bruited Bingham/Morgan-Lewis merger is consummated, Bingham as we know it is beginning to cease to exist. While I have no inside information and am not professionally involved in the recent developments, inquiring minds have to ask what has happened and why, and if there are any lessons for the rest of
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Articles, Cultural Considerations, Finance

The Blind Men & Big Data

This column is by our Senior Adviser, Doug Caddell: A few weeks ago I returned from the 37th annual ILTA education conference, which was held this year at the Gaylord Opryland hotel in Nashville. The Gaylord in Nashville is not my favorite venue.  It was cobbled together from the original Opryland Hotel when the Gaylord
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Articles, Business Models, Technology strategy

How Not To Lead

Lately you’ve seen a few columns here on the topic of leadership: Namely, how to do it well. Invoking the equal time rule, today I want to talk about failed, misguided, and destructive leadership, using two examples from very different walks of life. The first, a CEO of a Fortune 50 firm, is a matter
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Articles, Cultural Considerations, Leadership, Practice Group Management

“Growth Is Dead” Events: Portland & Seattle

We’re following Horace Greeley’s advice and heading to the Pacific Northwest. Thanks to the generosity of our friends at the LMA Northwest, we’ll be presenting in both Portland and Seattle on “Growth Is Dead: Now What?” Both events are 8:00–9:00 am: Portland on Tuesday, September 23rd  at the offices of Stoel Rives; And Seattle on
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Happy Labor Day


About the Site, Articles