Cull the herd, cultivate the mentor

Last week’s Boston Business Journal talks about the increasing issues with mandatory retirement ages in law firms.

I suppose they are understandable given the reasons stated in the article, but I wonder why they would run off a quality lawyer who isn’t interested in retiring?

Obviously, they are going to let the less-capable, or even the “average” retire according to their legal agreement and call it good.

But what about the superstar, the brilliant legal mind?

Why not keep that lawyer around as a mentor to the newbie lawyers? Sure, we all know that the new college grads know everything, but we also know that they understand the concept of precedent. Mentors with “40 years of precedent” behind them just might be what the doctor (lawyer?) ordered.

What do you do when your long-time experts need a change, or “age out”?

Run em off? Or let them share with the “young whippersnappers”, the newbies who are full of energy and ready to blossom with a little subtle mentoring?

Don’t waste an asset like the experience and expertise of an older staffer who wants to stay in the game, even on a part-time basis.

Tiger Woods can still learn a few things from Jack and Arnold. So can your Tigers.