Mathieu Shapiro Weighs in on Phila. Midsize Firms’ Fight to Stay Midsize in an Interview with The Legal Intelligencer

August 07, 2023

Obermayer managing partner Mathieu Shapiro was quoted in The Legal Intelligencer on August 7, 2023, in connection with the Schnader dissolution and the increasing pressure for Philadelphia’s once resilient midsize market. 

Part of the pressure firms are feeling is because Philadelphia, which long had a stable midsize market, is now finding itself increasingly a target for large national firms. And midsize firms are especially positioned to feel that pressure, given how difficult it is to compete with the broad practices and higher salaries that big law firms can command.

“It’s a competitive world out there and partners are constantly moving around with their business,” Mathieu Shapiro, managing partner of Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel, said. “Clients are moving all the time. They’re not always as loyal as they used to be. That’s why you’ve got to stay in touch, communicate and be transparent with your own clients, partners and the marketplace.”

According to Shapiro, transparency is key to retaining not only clients, but partners as well. Open discussions about lateral moves and departures can go a long way to help stem the kinds of rumors that can fuel partner runs, he said.

“We try to have the attitude that, while we don’t want good people to go, some may, but we’re always looking for good people, and, as long as everybody knows the fundamentals of our firm, [they’re more likely to stay],” Shapiro said.