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The Mad Clientist

Fear as a Differentiator—The BTI Fearsome Foursome

By September 23, 2015April 16th, 2020No Comments

Few law firms embrace fear as a differentiator. Yet corporate counsel do. In fact, corporate counsel identify 4 firms more fearsome than all others—the BTI Fearsome Foursome.

Fear is healthy in the right dosage—it helps you stay out of danger. The same can be said for the Fearsome Foursome. Corporate counsel believe the Fearsome Foursome make other law firms change their tactics and approach. Clients see opposing counsel spend time and money adjusting their strategies when facing the Fearsome Foursome.

The Fearsome Foursome managed to stake out a real source of differentiation in a tough market. 3 of the Fearsome Foursome are also among the best client service performers—proving you can treat clients better than others while still instilling fear in opponents.

Demand for Fearsome Firms Grows

New BTI research shows a big increase in bet-the-company work—compelling clients to seek out more fearsome firms.

The defining behaviors separating the fearsome firms from all others include:

  • Conviction.
    Not the kind you see in court. The Fearsome Foursome put every ounce of their heart, soul and psychic energy into the matter at hand—and believe just as strongly they will prevail.
  • Accessing the Firm-wide Brain Trust.
    Tapping every relevant source of intellectual capital to help. No lone rangers here. The Fearsome Foursome seek out various inputs, viewpoints and scenarios and bring each and all to bear. Clients say the can feel the horsepower of these collective minds at work.
  • Strategize and Implement. Even as You Go.
    Clients say it is the rare person who can do both. So finding a firm where large groups of partners can makes others pause. Clients know the strategy can change as you go—this frustrates some firms but exhilarates the Fearsome Foursome.

Please join us in congratulating the 2016 Fearsome Foursome:

Jones Day
Kirkland & Ellis
Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom

Just behind the Fearsome Foursome, clients recognize 13 law firms as Awesome Opponents—the firms who show growing strength in their ability to instill fear. In addition, legal decision makers say they want to steer clear of another 40 firms during disputes.

The 13 Awesome Opponents:

Altshuler Berzon
Baker & McKenzie
Baker Botts
Boies, Schiller & Flexner
Foley & Lardner
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher
Greenberg Traurig
Hogan Lovells
Jenner & Block
Morrison & Foerster
Paul, Weiss
Vinson & Elkins
Williams & Connolly

Check out each of the most feared law firms and those gaining in ferocity in our 5th annual series on trends in the litigation market: BTI Litigation Outlook 2016.

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