Moneyball and the Law: The Law Firm Perfomance Index

The fifth of a five-part series.

The book and academy-nominated film Moneyball chronicles how the Oakland A’s transformed the business of baseball by proving statistics rather than subjective observations are a better measure of a team’s success.

Taking a page from Moneyball, I set out to prove that objective measures are a better predictor of performance in the legal industry as well. Here is what I found:

By analyzing  law firm business risks and opportunities in the context of three performance indicators — Business Climate, Demand, Competitive Landscape — firms can pinpoint the type of client and nature of work for which they are best positioned to compete. They can then evaluate external and internal data to identify opportunities and make informed decisions about how they pursue their business objectives.

In my new report, “The LVS Law Firm Performance Index,” I use a matrix that compares nature of work (low to high risk) against type of business (SBE to Multinational). The LVS Law Firm Performance Index includes the full matrix so firms can assess their current competitive position against their goals and chart a plan toward success.

LVS Performance Matrix


What makes the work exciting is that for the first time lawyers can use objective criteria to address a variety of ongoing business challenges, including:

• How do we retain existing clients and attract new ones?
• Should we brand around individual attorneys or the firm as a whole?
• What is the optimal size of our firm?
• Should we market our practice expertise or our industry knowledge?
• How can we be more profitable?
• What can we do to build a firm culture allowing us to attract and retain talented lawyers?
• How should I develop my own practice to achieve my personal career goals?

The LVS Law Firm Performance Index is an initial effort to define the measures that contribute to law firm success. It is my sincere hope that through this research, we will be able to help law firms address their most difficult business challenges so that lawyers can focus on what they do best: Serving the public through the practice of law.

Interested? Share your thoughts or contact me to discuss is more detail.


Posted on May 4, 2012 in Uncategorized

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