Ed. note: Welcome to our daily feature, Quote of the Day.
Big Law was eager to throw bodies at the burgeoning economy not long ago. They were good enough to do the work once upon a time, but when the economy changed, they’re not. There’s the attitude in big firms that we don’t owe them anything; we pay them well. [T]hey’re afraid to say that they’re worried about their falling PPPs, because it might reflect that they’re just greedy and not willing to carry people through a tough period.
— Steven Harper, a former Kirkland & Ellis partner who writes about the legal profession, in comments given to Vivia Chen of Bloomberg Law concerning the recent spate of stealth layoffs that have been happening across elite Biglaw firms. Several firms, like Kirkland & Ellis and Ropes & Gray, have claimed that their job cuts were performance-based, which Harper says is a “red herring.” Keith Wetmore, who once served as chair of Morrison & Foerster and is now a managing director at recruiting firm Major, Lindsey & Africa, advised that when it comes to layoffs, “[t]he polite thing to do is to say that lawyers have been let go, including some very strong performers.”
Staci Zaretsky is a senior editor at Above the Law, where she’s worked since 2011. She’d love to hear from you, so please feel free to email her with any tips, questions, comments, or critiques. You can follow her on Twitter or connect with her on LinkedIn.
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