Michael Stein, one of the founding partners of Pashman Stein Walder Hayden PC, said he's spent more than 20 years working on succession planning and ensuring the successful future of his firm after he steps down. He said that from the very first day the firm started, one of its main objectives was to recruit and retain the next generation of leaders.
"It's something that's always been important to me and at the forefront of my thinking, namely because my objective really since inception back in 1995 was to build an institution that we could be proud of but one that would endure," Stein said. "The real test of whether or not an institution will endure is how its succession is planned, in particular that first-generation handoff."
While the plans themselves are important, all of the firm leaders agreed that one of the most important aspects of long-term succession planning is recruitment and retention of talent.
"It's insinuated in the DNA of our culture — the idea that what we're trying to do is build something that will endure," Stein said. "As a consequence, really, our focus since the beginning was to recruit and retain the kind of people that we'd like to carry the firm into the next generation. If I were to name the thing I'm most proud of about our firm, it's the next generation of lawyers in their 20s, 30s and 40s, who are absolute superstars."