The Devil You Know
As we move further into the new year, change is palpably in the air. The inclination to cling to what's comfortable and familiar is being challenged locally, nationally and globally. From our vantage point on the front lines of the legal leasing process, challenging what's comfortable and familiar is a great way to get rid of what's not working, and improve everything else.
The Benefits of Shaking Things Up
In opening the Black Box of the legal leasing process we’ve brought transparency to many time-worn, counter-productive habits, including use of the dinosaur form lease, negotiating outside the sphere of reasonableness, and the tendency to ignore the urgency mandate that time kills deals.
Underlying the seemingly irrational adherence to these and other practices is the addictive draw of comfortable old shoes and the devil you know, i.e., the insistence of most commercial landlords and tenants on using the same leasing counsel they've always used, whether it be in-house counsel, outside counsel, or a combination of the two.
Blind to the hazards of not trying someone new every so often to shake things up and see first hand what they may be missing out on, most companies continue to plod along and instead, vent their frustration over the time, cost and risk of getting leases over the finish line.
You’ve Got To Measure Performance
In addition to using the same counsel year after year, for better or worse, most commercial landlords and tenants have not developed metrics by which the performance of counsel can be measured, managed, and continuously improved.
Do you know if your leasing counsel is providing ‘best-in-class’ legal services? What metrics do you use to measure this? What procedures do you have in place for selecting new counsel?
If you can’t answer these questions, you probably don't really know if your form lease is hurting or helping you, or if your lease negotiations are consistently efficient and effective, or whether (or not) your leasing teams remain vigilant as the lease nears the finish line.