June 14, 2021

Let’s face it: some of your partners are not ready to welcome new external partner hires. They are sabotaging external hires by disrupting the process – playing nice while sharpening their knives.


Why would they sabotage the process?


I ask you: why wouldn’t they?


Life is good


For most of your partners, life is good – very good!


They have the ear of the executive layer having grown up in the firm together. So much legacy!


They are comfortable where they are. So, why on earth should they want to rock the boat?


You think that’s not true? Well, just the other day one of my clients told me:


“Max, I just interviewed at one of the major firms. The discussion with the top managing partner? Great! The next round with potential colleagues? Not so great. Within the first 15 minutes, it became clear, we were not made for each other. There were too many negative vibes in the room.”


It’s obvious


Honestly, candidates notice when your interviewers haven’t bought into the whole thing.


My client had plenty of time to imagine what would happen once he was on board. And you know what? He decided to stay put. He didn’t want to risk his livelihood and timely repayment of his mortgage for a venture which is tilted against him right from the get-go.


Can you blame him? Often, it’s just down to a gut feeling but faced with strange questions, nit-picking at their CV and no clear story, it’s obvious to candidates that they are not wanted.


So, what does this mean in practice for your firm’s partner hiring process?


Be deliberate


You need to be very deliberate when putting together your team of interviewers.


Select those partners with a purpose, who are intrigued by different views. Partners who will be intriguing to candidates, and have a compelling story to tell.


Leave the others out.


No excuses.


Don’t fall victim to internal sabotage.


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