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Partner Profile: Bill Papastergiadis
International firm comes under fire in Federal Court:

Partner Profile: Bill Papastergiadis

Every fortnight we ask a law firm partner a series of rapid-fire questions about their career. This fortnight: Moray & Agnew's Bill Papastergiadis

Which firm are you with?

Moray & Agnew.

When did you join that firm?

July 2006.

When were you made a partner of that firm?

July 2006.

Which firm were you at most recently prior to this?

Herbert Geer & Rundle.

What practice group are you with?

After practising in professional indemnity insurance for 15 years, I saw an opportunity to extend my skill set into the adjacent construction industry. These days I practise fairly evenly across those two areas.

What has been the most significant change to your practice area during your career?

In insurance, technology has driven business process improvements and resulted in data-intensive reporting and performance measurement. In the construction area, as the market has tightened and the margins have decreased, clients have become considerably more savvy about their commercial contracts.

What has been a major career highlight for you?

Moving from being a partner in a mid-sized commercial firm to becoming the Melbourne managing partner of a more specialised national firm has been the most significant event thus far in my career. Since moving to Moray & Agnew with a team of 30 seven years ago, this office has grown 300 per cent and nationally the firm is growing at a rate of knots. Simultaneously, we’ve maintained an incredibly low staff turnover rate. We’ve built an amazing team of talented people, and we work hard to hang on to them.

What do you like about being a lawyer?

When you first start out as a lawyer it is all about finding out the rules and following them. As you get more experienced, and the work gets more complex, you can try to be innovative in the way you approach issues.

What do you find challenging?

Balancing my practice with the responsibilities that come with being a managing partner, and on the executive committee, can be challenging. Our Melbourne office now has 110 people. Being responsible for that number of staff has taught me two things: to always look for the good in people, and not to sweat the small stuff

What do you enjoy doing when you are not working?

My family gives me my greatest sense of accomplishment and keeps me grounded. My other passions are my heritage and community involvement. As president of the Greek Community in Melbourne (the largest Greek community outside of Greece), I represent my culture in Australia and overseas. Right now, we’re laying the foundations for a 15-storey Hellenic Cultural Centre — the largest of its kind in the world.

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