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22 Feb 2024
by Anna Scott

Using reward to sustain a high-performance culture, with Susie Godfrey at Norton Rose Fulbright 

Pay inflation and transparency are also on the law firm’s agenda, according to its new head of performance and reward

Defining desired behaviours and putting a reward structure in place to support them is among the steps Norton Rose Fulbright is taking to sustain a high-performance culture.

Speaking on the Top pay and reward trends and challenges going into 2024 REBA webinar on 6 December 2023, Susie Godfrey, Head of Performance and Reward for the EMEA region at the law firm since August, said the chargeable hours metric of success is just one measure of performance. 

“Our lawyers are saying, ‘hang on, my role is a lot broader than that’. We really need to think about what behaviours we want to drive and what high performance really means to us as a firm,” she added.

Awarding bonuses to everyone isn’t the best use of a budget, especially if the company seeks a high-performance culture. “You really do need to be able to differentiate between those high performers,” Godfrey added. “The other thing is to have clear criteria for success. They might not be linked to hard metrics, but the achievement of what we might call ‘softer’ objectives. Whatever it is, it needs to be clear and simple for people to understand.”

Education is also important when it comes to pay inflation and transparency. “We don’t set our budgets in line with inflation and we have to remember there is a business impact for rising costs. It’s got to be a balancing act to ensure that any pay strategy is sustainable,” Godfrey added.

“Pay transparency is a big topic for us and people are asking about it more and more. They are starting to feel more comfortable having those conversations.”