Leadership and partnership changes at Clifford Chance

August 20, 2014 Clifford Chance’s new managing partner, Matthew Layton, is working with the firm’s new corporate head - Guy Norman - to restructure the leadership team and change the way the partnership operates.

In May, Leyton stepped into the top role and Norman took Layton’s former role as corporate head. Since then the duo have worked together to cut the firm’s management committee, do away with partner elections and put the position of London corporate head under threat.

Clifford Chance has been doing very well, with 7 per cent revenue rise last year from £1.271bn to £1.359bn, but the changes are being made in response to the increasing competition from US firms, who are luring some of Clifford Chance’s corporate stars. Layton and Norman, who have been working together for 16 years, say that it is time for change - time to scrap the complacency, drive efficiency and cut costs.

Layton is currently considering bringing all partners into the equity, something he says “gives a degree of flexibility in the model”.

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