Looking for instructions to make Partner? You’re missing the point.

Video Transcript: Don’t wait for the partner playbook

If you want to make partner, it’s normal that you’d want to know how it’s done. But, if you’re thinking there’s a particular combination of benchmarks to hit or mileposts to touch, you’re missing the point.

Hi, I’m John Borrowman. I have recruited exclusively in business valuation and litigation support for over two decades. That gives me perspective you won’t find anywhere else.

Have you asked about how to make partner at your practice and found that you can’t seem to get very clear or very precise guidance? Has it occurred to you maybe that’s because there’s no such thing?

Even so, if you look at the vast majority of firms you can see commonalities among those who have made it to the top. What are they?

People who make partner have continued to grow, personally. They never reach a point where they think things are “good enough.” They are always hungry for self-improvement. They find —or they create—new service lines to replace the ones that might have played out.

People who make partner contribute to revenue. That expectation is different in each practice and sometimes even within practices. And no matter the expectation, what you observe is genuine and consistent effort. Partners don’t take a foot off the gas pedal.

People who make partner are people who exhibit the highest levels of ethics and integrity. This is the most subjective of all criteria and, therefore, it’s the hardest to describe and the least appreciated.

People who make partner are people you would trust not to screw up the relationship you have worked so hard to build with your clients. They are the people who always have your back and are ready to stand with you in making the tough calls partners are sometimes required to make. They are people who are ready to be your “partner” in the best sense of the word.

Most firms will let you know that you’ve demonstrated these qualities in sufficient strength that you’re being considered to become a partner. Just don’t expect them to hand you the playbook that gets you to that point.

Everybody has questions every now and then. Am I in the right place? Am I being paid fairly? When you have questions, I can help you find answers. Give me a call.