20 May 2021 saw the Hilton Nicosia host the Cyprus Professional Services Conference at which our Managing Partner, Elias Neocleous, was a key speaker. The conference attracted leading professional professionals from all parts of Cyprus with senior representatives of the legal, accounting, banking, finance, investment, trust and regulatory sectors all keen to exchange views on the future of professional services in the country. There was a strong desire expressed by all to restore the reputation of the industry in the wake of the passports and Panama papers scandals. The future progress of Cyprus as a reputable international business hub was perceived as being dependent on this and hence future growth models must include reputational protection as a core element.
In his speech, Mr. Neocleous concurred that the future of the legal profession is aligned with the future progress of Cyprus as a regional business hub. He emphasized the need to recognise that a successful growth strategy requires that a business, (and an industry), identifies and understands its strengths and competitive advantages. It can then develop in ways and focus on markets in which it can build a sustainable advantage. Businesses in general and law firms in particular must have a clear understanding of the way to create value for their clients, be clear on the kind of clients they want to attract and, decide on the services they wish to offer. The push for Cyprus to become a ‘Headquartering’ centre offers a clear example of this.
In his view, law firms, in particular, need to step away from just doing the ‘basics’ and instead seek to provide innovative services and, evidence of the specific benefits that their services will bring to clients. Lawyers need to become valued consultants viewed by their clients as an indispensable cog in the business wheel. This can be best facilitated by making maximum use of advances in technology and digitalization that have the power to revolutionize the way law firms conduct their business. Properly applied they have the power to remove much of the drudgery of case work freeing up the time of the lawyer to focus on providing high quality, cost effective and novel solutions and services. The modern lawyer needs to be at home with technology and commercially astute so that they can truly add value for their clients. They should also be prepared to engage with other professionals so that they can offer solutions which go beyond those which are purely law based.
He concluded by stating that the disruption caused by the pandemic is going to accelerate the change to a new growth model and, that it is incumbent upon the Cyprus legal professionals to ensure that this will be a “flight to quality”.
If you require further information or assistance please speak with your usual contact at Elias Neocleous & Co LLC.