The economic uncertainty of 2020’s second quarter put preservation of cash flow at the top of mind for business leaders. For law firms, cutting staff positions to lighten payroll expenses of jobs that didn’t have analogous work in the virtual environment became a standard austerity practice.

But a diverse contingent of firms, some of them aided by the federal $2.2 trillion CARES Act stimulus package, refused to do so, believing it would disrupt a culture that distinguished the firm from its competitors. Some of their leaders told reporters that cultural cohesion was too crucial to fracture at a time when it would have to be maintained by way of virtual technology.