In an interview with The American Lawyer, Andrew Humphrey discussed Faegre Baker Daniels' first year as a combined firm and the logistics of a successful combination. The combined firm is "still going strong," The American Lawyer reported. "The numbers reflect some of the deeper success we had in integrating the two firms and in how clients responded to the merger," Humphrey explained.
One very unique aspect of the merger is that lawyers in the new firm were encouraged to choose the area of law they wanted to focus on, thus generating cross-practice teams in each group. "This is not just a marketing position," Humphrey said. "We want our lawyers to develop a deep knowledge of their area."
When considering costs associated to the merger, firm leaders budgeted funds for the new colleagues to get acquainted with one another, including staging a firmwide meeting in Chicago in its second month of operation. "We allotted for 'getting-to-know-you' expenses and for flying around meeting each other," Humphrey told The American Lawyer. "We wanted to make that investment and it didn't chip away at revenue in a way that wasn't planned."
As the combined firm begins its second year of operation in 2013, Humphrey is pleased at the current state of Faegre Baker Daniels, saying "Overall, I'm very proud of our integration and how our professionals responded. We all know that lawyers don't always accept change easily."