This morning, Legal Times hosted a panel of firm managing partners who shared their 2008 legal business outlooks. Despite the downturn in the economy, the discussion certainly wasn’t all doom and gloom. Though the partners agreed that certain practices will likely feel somewhat of a squeeze this year, they were confident that other areas, such as litigation, will have enough work to sustain their firms.
Maureen Dwyer, managing partner of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman’s D.C. office, said there’s a common misconception that firms have to start at zero at the onset of a new year. To the contrary, she said her office has a number of ongoing litigation matters that will continue to benefit the firm in 2008.
Chairman of Howrey, Robert Ruyak, emphasized that firms are having to rethink their strategic goals. The “supermarket firm,” he said, is a thing of the past. To stay profitable these days, Ruyak said firms are better off focusing on customizing themselves to select clients.
The panel also included Richard Murphy, partner in charge of Sutherland Asbill & Brennan’s D.C. office; Michael Nannes, chairman of Dickstein Shapiro; and La Fonte Nesbitt, executive partner of Holland & Knight’s D.C. office. Look for a full transcript of the event in an upcoming issue of Legal Times.