Dickie Dees’ growth drive kicks off structural shift

Dickinson Dees has launched a partnership consultation on remuneration as part of a wide-ranging overhaul of its business.

Jonathan Blair
Jonathan Blair

In a series of staff meetings over the past week managing partner Jonathan Blair as announced the management’s vision for the North East firm for the next few years, including the launch of updated appraisal processes and career paths across the practice.

A consultation paper on introducing a merit-based element to remuneration has been sent to partners and is set to be discussed in May.

Dickinson Dees is one of the few firms in The Lawyer UK 200 still to operate a traditional lockstep system. Last year the equity spread ran from £161,000 to £301,000.

Blair told The Lawyer that the firm would be ­targeting turnover growth through a client project launched in conjunction with Cranfield School of Management.

It focuses on maximising spend on eight key client accounts to £1m, something Blair said will require new skills training and appraisal processes for partners and client managers.

He said: “The intention is to remain a regional heavyweight, but if we’re serious about our aspiration to be a top UK law firm then we need to grow market share, and that’s going to be outside the North East region.

“It’s premature to start talking about merging specifically – it’s not ruled in and it’s not ruled out.”