U.S. firms’ deep pockets and buying power have plagued elite U.K. firms for several years now: money talks and partners walk.

Linklaters was reminded of this thorn in their side most recently with the exit of long-standing corporate star Nick Rumsby to Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton in November. But given the firm overhauled its lockstep system less than a year ago, driven in part by a desire to stem those exact sort of departures, whether those modifications have had the desired effect is currently up for debate. A number of U.K. firms have tried to combat the problem with ever more inventive tweaks to their locksteps in recent years. Linklaters, one of the fêted ‘Magic Circle’ firms in the U.K., made its own modifications to its traditional lockstep model in December 2021. 

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