Joseph B. AltonjiPrincipal
(312) 466-5648 – office
(847) 867-2220 – mobile
Joseph Altonji, a Co-Founder of LawVision Group, has spent nearly three decades consulting to law firms and their leaders, in the U.S. and internationally. Prior to launching the LawVision Group, Mr. Altonji spent 22 years with Hildebrandt Baker Robbins, and its predecessor firm, Hildebrandt International, as a strategist and senior Managing Director. Mr. Altonji was a senior member and Co-Chair of Hildebrandt Baker Robbins Law Firm Strategy and Structure practice, and Chair of the Hildebrandt Baker Robbins Law Vision Coordinating Committee, which was responsible for systematically rethinking the business of law.
Mr. Altonji has been a leader in advancing law firm strategic and management development, and a strong advocate of fundamental business model change in response to significant change in the economic conditions of the industry. He has consulted with hundreds of law firms on improving their strategic focus and business management on both a firm and practice level. Mr. Altonji concentrates his practice on helping firms clearly define and subsequently achieve their strategic objectives, including alignment of firm governance, management and compensation systems with firm strategy, mergers and other areas. In addition, Mr. Altonji advises firms in crisis situations, helping them reestablish economic and practice stability, and long-term strategic integrity. He is a frequent author and speaker on topics related to law firm strategy, governance, compensation and economic performance. He is based in LawVision’s Chicago office.
Strategy Development and Refinement
Facilitates law firm and legal practice leadership in the critical assessment of their market position, their specific capabilities, and their range of strategic options.
Works with firm leaders to develop and integrate firm talent and legal service delivery strategies with their market positioning strategies to assure long term strategic success.
Works with firms and practices to assess the competitive dynamics of their markets, including competitor capabilities.
Management and Governance
Assists law firms and practice groups in developing and implementing strategies, including identification of critical areas of required change, and conditions for successful achievement of strategic goals, and working with firms to implement and support changes necessary for strategies to be successful.
Works with firms to align their management and governance structures with their strategic objectives, focusing on improving the prospects of long term success.
Assists firms in leadership and management succession planning and execution, including evaluation of the governance, leadership, cultural and economic position of the firm and development of approaches best fitting the firm’s needs.
Helps firms assess and enhance the quality of their management structure and management team, facilitating change as needed.
Works with firms experiencing significant crisis, along with their leadership teams, to reestablish stability and begin rebuilding long term strategic viability
Refines firm compensation systems to enhance competitiveness, and works with firms to use their compensation systems to further their strategic objectives.
Works with firms where appropriate to design and implement entirely new compensation systems.
Assists firm Executive Committees in the design of compensation programs for firm and practice level management team members, and integration of those programs with the overall partner compensation system.
Mergers and Acquisitions
Assists firms considering mergers, including initial assessment of strategic merger objectives, identification and targeting of appropriate merger targets, initial contact with and negotiation with appropriate target candidates, conduct of due diligence and structuring the transaction.
Works with newly merged firms to accelerate practice and business integration to assure achievement of strategic goals.
Assists firms in economic distress, including restructuring of firm practices, staff and economic performance, and restructuring firm obligations.
Works with firms to analyze and address unfunded firm obligations, such as retirement programs.
Analyzes the economic performance of firms and individual practices and implement strategies to improve performance.
Articles and Additional Information
Some of the following articles are not available online. For reprint options please contact Law Vision’s Chicago Office.
Competing in the Future - A New Take on Building Strategic Strength, with Michael Short, LawVision Newsletter, January 14, 2013
Addressing the Fraying Partnership, Law Firm Partnership & Benefits Report
Compensation Transition - Business Transition in a Post-Unfunded Liability, Law Firm Partnership & Benefits Report, Volume 18, Number 1
Assessing Branch Office Profitability, American Lawyer Management
Calculating the Cost of Providing Legal Services, Law Firm Partnership and Benefits Report
Can Your Firm Still Afford an Objective Compensation System, Leadership and Management Directions
Changes in Compensation Systems: How Law Firms Meet the Challenge, Accounting for Law Firms
Common Sense on Giving Origination Credit, New York Law Journal
Enhancing the Performance of Problem Practice Areas, The American Lawyer
Exercises in Efficiency, The Lawyer
Get the Balance Right, Lawyer International
How to Use Your Firm's Compensation System as a Strategic Tool, Florida Lawyer
Is Your Firm Financially Stable? Lawyers Weekly USA
Looking for Savings and Efficiency in Nonlegal Operations, The American Lawyer
Managing your Firm’s Financial Performance, Accounting for Law Firms
Managing Your Investment: Assessing the Contribution of Branch Offices, Legal Management
Partnership Withdrawal Policies in Flux, Law Firm Partnership Report
Practice Area Groups: Are They Giving or Taking, Hildebrandt Report
Rethinking Leverage to Help Boost Profits, Legal Management
Rethinking Rules for Partner Compensation, New York Law Journal
Rethinking Unfunded Pension Liabilities, New York Law Journal
Retirement and Withdrawal—Unfunded Retirement Plan, Chapter in Book titled Law Firm Financial Management and Accounting
Rewarding Productive Teamwork, New York Law Journal
Some Ideas to Consider Before Your Firm Establishes a Branch, Legal Management
The Billable Hours Spiral, Hawaii Bar News
Tracking Geographical Differences in Billing Rates, Accounting For Law Firms
Unfunded Commitments and Phase-Out Compensation: Avoiding the Pitfalls, Law Firm Partnership & Benefits Report
Weak Practice Areas Need Bolstering, The National Law Journal
What's Wrong with the Mid Sized Firms? WorldLaw Business
Why Consider Accrual Accounting? OLMANET
MBA, with honors, Northwestern University, Kellogg School of Management
M.A., University of Chicago
B.A. cum laude, Loyola University, New Orleans
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