26 ASIAN LEGAL BUSINESS – APRIL 2024 WWW.LEGALBUSINESSONLINE.COM COVER STORY a willingness to embrace change, while at the same time being steady and reliable. Furthermore, “Transparency and open communication are essential. We strive to maintain an environment where feedback is encouraged and acted upon, creating a trust-based relationship with our team. This approach helps align individual goals with the firm’s objectives, ensuring that our top talent feels engaged and integral to our collective success,” adds Darani. Sunyaluck agrees that adaptability, resilience, and strong leadership are needed from law firm management to foster open communication, transparency, and trust within the organisation to retain top talent in today’s fast-moving legal marketplace. Additionally, “Management should prioritise mentorship and career advancement opportunities to help lawyers reach their full potential. By demonstrating a commitment to the well-being and professional growth of their talent, law firm management can effectively retain top performers amidst market uncertainties,” adds Sunyaluck. A well-functioning mentorship programme is also the secret weapon of Drew & Napier in keeping exceptional young talent. Maniam says the firm’s “team-based” system has made it stand out amongst major competitors in Singapore. Under the system, young lawyers will join a team led by a senior lawyer and predominantly work with the team leader and other lawyers of varying seniority within the team. “The team structure provides an excellent platform for team leaders to monitor their lawyers’ workloads, professional development and even their wellbeing and mental health, all of which contribute to happier and better lawyers. The team system also means that our trainees and junior lawyers frequently work directly with their team leaders, which appeals to many young lawyers,” explains Maniam. “At the same time, the firm truly has an open-door policy. Senior lawyers are always happy to share views with junior lawyers who need advice. Having access to hundreds of top-tier lawyers whom you can speak to any time is powerful,” he adds. Azmi & Associates also adopts a culture of collaboration and knowledgesharing amongst its lawyers, where the more seasoned professionals mentor and guide junior colleagues in embracing digital tools and best practices. Jessada concurs that providing junior lawyers with effective mentoring and training will enable them to quickly learn and grow. Constructive feedback combined with appropriate rewards and recognition is also important. “Some of the expectations that employees have will be consistent over time, such as opportunities for career progression, competitive compensation, and a supportive and professional working environment. Firms that cannot genuinely offer these are going to find attracting the best talent challenging,” he adds. To meet these standards, Tilleke & Gibbins has placed a strong focus on recognising and rewarding individual achievements and fostering a culture and community that celebrates diversity and inclusion. “By aligning our firm’s values with the unique aspirations of all our employees, we aim to not only attract but also inspire and retain the best in the field,” adds Tiziana. Drew & Napier, on the other hand, prizes the shared dedication to its clients as the strongest glue that bonds the firm together. “Our client’s cases are pushed to the limits, within the confines of law and ethics. Facts and laws are always thoroughly interrogated for every case, big or small. Our client’s problems are our problems, and we are always there for them, no matter what and no matter when. It is exciting to pursue excellence in every case,” says Maniam. Image: Peshkova/