From launching as a boutique firm four years ago to opening a fourth office this year, Travis Schultz & Partners will endeavour to maintain both its working culture and “un-corporate environment”, according to the managing partner.
On Wednesday (18 May), Queensland-based law firm Travis Schultz & Partners celebrated the launch of its newly expanded Brisbane office on Adelaide Street, in a move to accommodate its growing team and better serve the needs of its client base.
Since the firm launched in 2018, it has grown from being made up of founder and managing partner Travis Schultz and three part-timers to a team of more than 40 staff, spread out across offices in Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, and Cairns.
“We are incredibly grateful for the support we’ve received from the professional community and humbled by the fact that we are managing growth rather than struggling to maintain it,” Mr Schultz said.
Special counsel and personal injury accredited specialist Trent Johnson manages TSP’s new Brisbane office and said the firm attributes its success to its focus on social justice rather than maximising profits.
“Our experienced and dynamic team firmly believe in our guiding values of fairness, respect, and compassion, and I believe our commitment to being a professional services firm means we always put people before profits,” he said.
Speaking to Lawyers Weekly ahead of the new office launch, TSP managing partner Travis Schultz said that in founding the firm, he “wanted to create a firm based on old fashioned ethics and values”.
“I wanted to create a boutique law firm that was very much ‘un-corporate’. A firm that promised genuine expertise in a narrow area of law, personalised service, significantly lower fees and a very real sense of community,” he said.
“We’ve seen highs and lows throughout the pandemic; however, our growth strategy has remained intact. Apart from needing to be flexible and agile to accommodate the very real disruption that comes with the pandemic, we’ve stayed focussed on professional development of team members, servicing our clients exceptionally well and giving back to the community whenever we can.”
Now, after out-growing their Brisbane office and having recently opened a new office in Cairns, led by senior lawyer Beth Rolton, Mr Schultz said that the new Adelaide Street office would allow for the addition of 20 extra staff in the next five years.
“Post-pandemic, a key focus for us is attracting new team members who fit our culture. We are currently putting the finishing touches on a graduate program which will offer six to eight graduates the opportunity to hone their skills in an ‘un-corporate’ environment. The program is being carefully crafted to ensure our graduates will have the mentorship and professional development they need to excel in their career with the added bonus of a potential pathway to partnership in the medium term for the super talented and enthusiastic candidates,” he explained.
“Next month, we will have an exciting announcement about the appointment of three new partners of the TSP firm – so watch this space for that news.”
In terms of how the firm has managed to continually grow and succeed amid an international pandemic, Mr Schultz said it all comes down to being a professional services firm, rather than a business.
“We put our clients and the community before profits, every time. We provide exceptional results and personalised service to our clients at a fraction of the cost of bigger compensation law firms, yet at the same time make it a point to behave as an exemplary corporate citizen. When I decided to create a new specialist compensation law firm, I knew that we only wanted to bring on board lawyers who either were already accredited specialists, or aspired to reach that level – and who shared our social justice values and with whom a commitment to community resonates,” he said.
“Another unusual feature of our firm is that a lawyer remains the key contact with clients throughout every claim. From the first phone call to the firm through to settlement, clients can speak directly with their lawyer to discuss their claim. We don’t triage calls or use call centres to ‘weed out’ the cases we select – new client enquiries get to talk to a lawyer no matter what because that’s part of our commitment to community. We provide a free initial appointment and advice to anyone in our community, regardless of whether it’s likely to become a case that is likely to provide revenue. Our reward is the warm fuzzy feeling we get by helping out someone in need.”
And in terms of continuing to grow, TSP has plans to expand its partnership in the next five years, without losing sight of the firm’s core values.
“Although we’re bigger than boutique now, we’re still firmly focused on our promises to clients and the community – we never want to lose sight of our purpose and vision. In five years’ time, yes we will be much bigger, however I still see us as being a compensation law firm with compassion.
“We know that no matter how hard it is, we need to maintain our values as we grow and continue to be a compensation law firm with a community conscience, focussed on providing cutting edge expertise, without the price tag,” Mr Schultz added.
“My plan is to remain focused on retaining our valued team members and attracting those who align to our vision, promise and values. Maintaining a culture where our people thrive is the key priority. Everything else will fall into place if our people enjoy their jobs.”