Young CEO to lead practice management body
The 35-year-old head of Sydney firm Makinson d’Apice Lawyers has been elected president of the Australasian Legal Practice Management Association (ALPMA).
Tony Bleasdale (pictured), one of the country’s youngest firm CEOs, will replace outgoing ALPMA president Warrick McLean, general manager at Coleman Greig.
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McLean commented that Bleasdale is “part of the new breed of law firm leaders”.
“His experience in technology, business development and general management will help ensure ALPMA continues to provide the learning and development program and industry connections that our members need to help them successfully lead their firms in this changing legal landscape,” he added.
As president, Bleasdale plans to improve the accessibility of ALPMA’s learning and development programs. ALPMA will also launch a new initiative focused on helping small firms adapt to the changing legal landscape using live streaming technology.
Bleasdale urged law firms to follow suit and invest in the continual development of their management and support staff as well as their lawyers.
“The old ways of working are just not going to cut it in the future,” he said.
“Law firm managers have to continually question the status quo and champion innovative ways of working to ensure their firms are not left behind.”
Bleasdale cited the results of the recent Great Place to Work Institute Australia study, which revealed that law firms invest just 43 hours per employee per year in the professional development of their lawyers, compared to an investment of around 88 hours by the country’s top-performing workplaces.
“I suspect that investment is even lower for non-fee earners at law firms,” Bleasdale said.
“It is imperative that legal practice managers keep up-to-date with the latest in management thinking, industry best-practice and developments in technology, so they have the know-how to successfully lead their firms in this challenging environment,” he added.
Prior to taking the role at Makinson d’Apice Lawyers, Bleasdale was the general manager of knowledge at Maurice Blackburn.