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This year, Ashurst joined the cohort of law firms establishing consulting businesses, citing client demand for legal-led consultancy services. Jamie Ng, global head of Ashurst Consulting, says the operation has already experienced rapid growth as it looks to reimagine the business of law.

 

ALB: Can you tell us a little about your professional background?

NG: Over a career spanning more than 20 years, Ive earned a reputation for my pragmatic yet unconventional approach. If my clients are grappling with a complex legal transaction, they trust me to offer a fresh perspective and creative solution. I am an Ashurst executive team member, global co-head of Finance and, as a business growth expert, am also global head of Ashurst Consulting. I provide top-tier legal advice to c-suite executives and co-create cutting-edge strategies aligned to their objectives.

ALB: What were the motivations for launching Ashurst Consulting — and why now?

NG: We were experiencing strong ongoing demand for advice in the key areas of change and risk management for business. Since COVID, in particular, our top local clients have asked us for help in areas well beyond traditional legal services. They want a legal-led approach that requires integrated legal and risk capabilities to solve client problems.

ALB: Can you tell us about your priorities for the business for this year?

NG: We see continued opportunities in the global consulting market, which has recorded year-on-year growth for the past five years across both mature markets and emerging economies. The sector has an estimated value of more than $250 billion and is expanding as the global economy expands. We have plans to migrate our successful Australian model to the UK later in 2021 – and to regions beyond after that.

ALB: For your team, what makes up the bulk of the work?

NG: In less than a year since commencing operations, Ashurst Consulting has experienced rapid growth in demand for offerings across all areas of the risk advisory business such as financial crime, transformation, health and safety, cyber and data, regulatory compliance, conduct and enterprise risk management.

ALB: What are some of the leadership lessons youve taken away from working through the pandemic?

NG: When we launched the business, we had one partner Phil Hardy, heading up Risk Advisory and Joshua Smith as our Head of Board Advisory. That was in March 2020 in the middle of a pandemic. By June, we had six entrepreneurial directors ready to roll their sleeves up and help grow and establish the business operationally and market-facing through their enabling capabilities and credentials. Fast-forward a year, and we have grown to seven partners in Ashurst Consulting. As a leader during the pandemic, I was driven to re-imagine the business of law with a genuine desire to develop strategic partnerships with clients. I hope to inspire the next generation of lawyers to adopt an entrepreneurial and flexible approach to their practice, underpinned by a strong moral compass.

 

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