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Linklaters (A): Seeking Clear Blue Water

 Ashish Nanda and Lauren Prusiner  
Product number:
HLS 08-01
21 pages
Product Type:
Link to Faculty Author Page:
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July 25, 2007


On June 4, 2004, Linklaters managing partner Tony Angel unveiled his vision for the global law firm’s future in an internal strategy paper titled “Clear Blue Water – A Vision for Linklaters in 2007.” The paper declared the firm’s intention to “achieve market leadership amongst global law firms within three years.” Partners’ reactions to the plan ranged from plaudits to disbelief. The case provides an overview of Linklaters history, governance, work environment, and challenges facing the firm. Given this context, the case describes Angel's introduction of, and partners’ reaction to, “Clear Blue Water.” It ends with Angel, faced with mixed response from the partnership, pondering the right way ahead and how to proceed. 

Learning Objectives

The case allows participants to discuss the importance of having a clear strategy in a professional service firm (PSF), the challenges related to implementing a strategy, and the considerations that lead to successful change management in a PSF.

Subjects Covered

Change Management, Leadership, Strategy Formulation


Geographic: United Kingdom

Industry: Law Firm

Event Year Begin: 2004

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Financial Management Case Studies at Columbia Law School

Leadership in Law Firms


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