Allen Abrams published an article in the Virginia Law Weekly discussing a lecture given by Professor James Donovan, partner and managing director at Goldman Sachs. In the article, Abrams explained Donovan’s approach to practitioner-client relationships, and the two common criticisms lobbied against practitioners.
“The professor identified two of those criticisms,” he wrote. “The first is a failure to think strategically. Donovan stressed the imperative to not ‘confine analysis to the four corners of the legal problem,’ thereby enabling a dialogue with the client that demonstrates intelligence, interest, and an understanding of the client’s ultimate objectives, the market, and competition.
The second criticism is that ‘my lawyer is like Dr. No.’ Because he holds both a J.D. and MBA, Donovan understand that lawyers often say no to clients because they are looking to protect the client’s interests, but he advised that lawyers should ‘always come up with alternatives’ and explain how those options might be accomplished.”