Business services functions in UK law firms have evolved massively in recent years. This has transformed the legal business, but it is also striking how it has meant that business services leaders from UK firms are now in high demand all over the globe.
Forget law. Elliot Moss, Director of Business Development at Mishcon de Reya, has done something that is rather unusual for business full stop. His personality has become synonymous with the brand he represents. When you mention Mishcon in conversations, it’s not uncommon for people to say admiringly, ‘Ah, that’s the place where Elliot Moss works’.
Shiree Murdoch has been on a journey. It is one that helped modernise Nabarro, the law firm she joined as HR Director in 2012. And it now stands her in good stead as she embarks on the next stage of her career in the post-merged firm of CMS, Nabarro and Olswang.
Kevan Skelton, Global Recruiting & Director, Human Resources, EME, at Reed Smith has advice for those considering joining the legal profession: ‘Build strong relationships, deliver through influence, use your listening skills, be resilient, practical and ever ready to find a way to convert strategy into deliverable bite-size chunks that maximise the benefits to lawyers but without taking up lots of their time.’
Tesco might not spring to mind as an obvious breeding ground for business directors in law. But when Michelmores hired Graham Johnson, for 11 years Tesco’s Finance Director of UK Operations, it was a statement of intent: this is a firm willing to think differently. And for Johnson? Well, it was the chance to make an impact on law – an industry he describes as ripe for innovation.