The biggest firm in China just shook up its governance

China’s largest firm by headcount Dacheng has rethought its management structure following an election process that began in February.

The new structure consists of three bodies, a 17-member standing committee, a five-member supervising committee and an executive committee. It replaces Dacheng’s previous 15-member management committee.

The new set-up, according to Dacheng, can separate the power of decision-making, execution and supervision. It also lays a more sophisticated foundation for effective corporate governance and management at the firm, which has more than 3,200 lawyers in 50 offices.

Similar to Dacheng, many of the country’s leading firms have started focusing more on improving management mechanisms and transforming organisational culture. Jun He, best known in the West for being Slaughter and May’s best friend, and DeHeng both made the transition from iconic founder to new generation last year.

This week, our China blogger Robert Lewis shares his experience at Zhong Lun’s annual partners meeting and provides insights into the different management styles at four top Chinese firms.

The conclusion, perhaps contradicting to many Western lawyers’ perception, is that Chinese firms are neither unmanaged nor unmanageable.

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