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The Partner Remuneration Handbook: A Guide to Compensation in Law and Other Professional Service Firms

The Partner Remuneration Handbook: A Guide to Compensation in Law and Other Professional Service Firms
Product ISBN: 9781787428485
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Partner compensation and how partners share profits is central to the cohesive fabric of any professional partnership. While one adage says that “there are as many profit-sharing systems as there are partnerships”, there has recently been the emergence of a global practice about what “merit” means and how risk and reward are shared among partners in professional service firms.

In The Partner Remuneration Handbook, Michael Roch and Ray D’Cruz provide guidance for senior partners, managing partners, partnership boards, remuneration committees and others involved in the partner compensation process (department heads, CFOs, HRDs), on designing effective profit-sharing systems, reaching fair reward decisions efficiently and implementing motivating contribution management processes.

Filled with practical insights, this book draws on principles of partnership, motivation and incentives in human capital management, and executive compensation in closely held businesses. Looking beyond the numbers, the authors balance the big picture with a detailed how-to for any professional partnership irrespective of geography, size and maturity.

This title encompasses three core elements:

  • Exploring the different partner reward systems found in most professional firms
  • Showing how partnerships define and discuss partner contribution commitments that further the firm’s overall strategic, operational and financial objectives
  • Providing decision-making guidance about marrying reward to performance and on Remuneration Committee governance

It also addresses a myriad of special topics, such as rewarding partners in management roles, and provides a proven approach for how firm leaders can take partners with them on the journey of evolving their partner compensation system.

table of content

Part I: Introduction
1. Total rewards strategy and the future workforce: three trends shaping the future of human resources,
remuneration and partner profit sharing
2. Partner compensation in context: strategy, organisational design, culture, partnership maturity, internal competitiveness and competing for talent externally
3. Three elements of any partner reward system: reward structure, contribution management, reward decision making
Part II: Reward structures in professional partnerships
4. The seven fundamental partner reward structures
5. The profit-sharing waterfall: drawings, bonuses and distributions
6. Lock-steps and other sharing systems
7. Eat-what-you-kill and other formula systems
8. Merit-based systems
9. The role of bonuses in equity partner reward systems
10. The role of goodwill, capital and dividends in partnerships
11. Marketplaces and ecosystems
12. Profit sharing as “partners” in incorporated structures: the impact of external financing, law companies and technology-intensive firms
Part III: Managing partner contribution
13. Leadership and partner contribution management: past and future; contribution frameworks
14. Understanding what motivates partners and how to lead them
15. Designing measures, metrics and KPIs
16. Designing a formal partner review process
17. Partner conversations, Part 1: agreeing objectives with partners
18. Partner conversations, Part 2: leading a partnership through the right ongoing conversations, creating a
culture of ongoing conversations and a coaching mindset
19. Partner conversations, Part 3: formal feedback and having formal review conversations with partners
20. Managing underperformance
21. Increasing effectiveness and efficiency: the role of specialist capabilities (CFO, HRD) and infrastructure (technology)Part IV: Partner reward
governance and decision making
22. Reward governance: key elements
23. Remuneration Committee: when to have one, remit, who should serve on it, roles and responsibilities
24. Remuneration Committee: managing to an annual calendar
25. Preparing for a reward round
26. Deciding on partner reward in the heat of a partner reward round: heuristics, decision aids and biases
27. Transparency and communicating reward results
28. After a reward round: the importance of reflection and self-assessment
29. Appealing Remuneration Committee decisions
Part V: Special issues 30. Democratising reward: how tokens support collaboration among partners
31. Rewarding partners in management roles
32. Diversity and inclusion
33. Size and shape of the partnership: salaried partners, fixed-share partners, of counsels, directors
34. Mergers & acquisitions and lateral hires
35. The small firm: financial realities versus personal intimacy; founder-led firms and succession planning
marrying baby-boomers with millennials; multigenerational partnerships
36. The internationalising firm: evolving global, national and local practices
37. The global firm: global compensation processes
38. Global alliances and networks
39. Effecting changes to a partner reward system: systemic change, partner involvement
40. Moving beyond effectiveness and efficiency: stress reducers and well-being enhancers
Part VI: The way ahead
41. The future: a partner remuneration system for a growing 21st century professional service firm
A. Self-assessment
B. Partner compensation policy outline
C. Sample contribution framework
D. Sample KPIs and metrics
E. Formal check-in checklist
F. Informal check-in checklist
G. Sample Remuneration Committee calendar
H. RemCom annual self-assessment