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Hicksons’ managing partner on the firm’s biggest challenges

Legal tech, ESG and the war for talent are a few key trends this managing partner is keeping abreast of this year.

user iconLauren Croft 12 June 2023 Big Law
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In conversation with Lawyers Weekly, Hicksons managing partner Stewart Cameron spoke about the firm’s ongoing priorities this year as well as how it’s evolved post-pandemic.

“Hicksons will focus on continuing to prioritise our clients and our people. Everything we do revolves around people — this is evident from our people-centric strategy and our commitment to improving diversity and inclusion within our firm,” he said.

“Additionally, other priorities include investment and implementation of pro bono initiatives and developing our ESG positioning.”


Similar to most of the legal profession right now, Hicksons is focused on technology and artificial intelligence (AI) in particular.

ChatGPT and similar AI tech have made global headlines in the first half of 2023 and prompted waves of change within a number of industries, including the legal profession. You can read Lawyers Weekly’s full coverage of ChatGPT and other AI platforms and what lawyers need to know here.

“In our view, the most significant issue in the industry right now is how we are utilising technology to improve business processes and enable efficient outcomes for our clients and our people. For example, using automation and AI to simplify processes and boost productivity. BigLaw can champion this through prioritising solutions for people and investing in innovation,” Mr Cameron added.

“People will always have legal problems to solve. With the evolution of AI, the way lawyers work is also evolving. However, the legal industry needs to continue to innovate and develop alongside other professions if it wants to remain competitive.”

Further, the firm is largely focused on its ESG strategy as well as the war for talent in the face of a potential recession — after expanding into climate and cyber security with a partner hire in July last year. In addition to AI technologies, ESG has been revealed to be one of the top key trends for the legal profession in 2023 — with tech and ESG also tipped to drive M&A throughout the year.

“Some of the challenges we foresee include the impact of the economy and recession on law firms, driving new business in a competitive marketplace and continuing to innovate against competitors while maintaining Hicksons’ values and addressing regulatory changes.

“Execution of the firm’s ESG framework will continue to evolve. Consistent with our ESG strategy, we will focus on responsible business operations, including sustainability, inclusion, and women in leadership,” Mr Cameron explained.

“One headline issue has been the war for talent. While these issues will carry on this year, Hicksons’ values are core to our ability to attract, retain and engage our workforce. Additionally, focusing on our people and mental health wellbeing and support. As such, we have worked through development programs, wellbeing programs and fostering a strong culture of collaboration and support.”

To attract and retain this talent, Mr Cameron said that the firm is continuing to focus on hybrid and flexible working post-pandemic.

“Hicksons offers hybrid working arrangements with a clear focus on ensuring communication and positive outcomes for remote work. This is continuing to evolve, as we look to encourage people to come back to the office. Supporting performance over presenteeism is the key driver as learning from peers is better established in person,” he added.

“Working with leaders on effective management of hybrid working teams has also been crucial and will continue to be a focus for us in a post-pandemic environment.”

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