Rochester/Buffalo Office Managing Partner, Nixon Peabody LLP
Years in current role: 4
What has been the biggest challenge you’ve dealt with over the past year?
Managing through the tremendous uncertainty that our team, like so many others, experienced since March 16, 2020. Along with maintaining service for our clients, it remains a challenge to maintain the sense of teamwork that is such an important part of our culture while we remain physically distant from each other.
What do you see as the biggest changes in the legal industry in the next 3-5 years?
The biggest challenge will be identifying what the meaning of “firm” should be. Is it about where we physically sit? Is it about a group of lawyers working together to solve client problems, regardless of physical location? With offices throughout the country, the lawyers in our firm are accustomed to working on cross-geographical teams, while working in an office full of colleagues.
The legal industry, including our firm, has managed to function pretty well over the last year without attorneys working in an office. While certainly convenient, I remain curious how continued remote work will impact the development of junior attorneys, who are the future of our firm. Teaching, learning and mentoring from afar (or through a screen) may not yield the results many of us are accustomed to or that our clients expect.
What are you most looking forward to doing as COVID restrictions ease?
Having the NP ROC team together again. I have never been so excited to help plan the next office holiday party.