Growth is the linchpin of the traditional law firm model, as it creates an aura of confidence for partner/owners and the resources and opportunities necessary to reward junior lawyers for their hard work. For decades, growth occurred organically; as clients grew, so did the firm.
But every market has a saturation point. For the corporate legal market, the rise of The Am Law 200 ended comfortable regional oligarchies. Regional firms became national firms by moving into each other’s backyards and poaching each other’s talent. An unintended consequence of all this growth is that the supply of capable outside counsel exceeds demand.
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