Patrick McKenna
McKenna Associates Inc.

Ashridge House
11226 - 60 Street
Edmonton, AB T5W 3Y8, Canada
Phone: 780-428-1052
Areas of Practice
  • Business Development
  • Firm/Practice Management
  • Legal Marketing

Practice/Organization Description

An internationally recognized authority on law practice management Patrick has, since 1983, worked with the top management of premier law firms around the globe to discuss, challenge and escalate their thinking on how to manage and compete effectively.

The Financial Post labels McKenna “a professional firm management and marketing guru, with a client base stretching from Britain to the United States.” Jim Kouzes, Chairman Emeritus, tompeters! company described him as “a highly seasoned and extraordinarily credible professional.” And identified him as one of twenty International Visionaries in the legal profession for “their vision, sheer hard work, professional eminence, and humanity.”

He is author of a pioneering text on law firm marketing, Practice Development: Creating a Marketing Mindset (Butterworths, 1989), recognized by an international journal as being “among the top ten books that any professional services marketer should have.” His subsequent works include Herding Cats: A Handbook for Managing Partners and Practice Leaders (IBMP, 1995); and Beyond Knowing: 16 Cage-Rattling Questions To Jump-Start Your Practice Team (IBMP, 2000), both of which were Top 10 Management bestsellers. His newest book, Serving At The Pleasure of My Partners (Thomson Reuters) was released in July 2011.

One of the profession's foremost experts on firm leadership, his book (co-authored with David Maister), First Among Equals: How to Manage a Group of Professionals, (The Free Press, 2002) topped business bestseller lists in the United States, Canada and Australia; has been translated into nine languages; is currently in its sixth printing; and received an award for being one of the best business books of 2002; while in 2006, his e-book First 100 Days: Transitioning A New Managing Partner (NXTBook) earned glowing reviews and has been read by leaders in 63 countries. The book Management Skills (John Wiley, 2005) named McKenna among the “leading thinkers in the field“ together with Peter Drucker and Warren Bennis; and in 2008, the book In The Company of Leaders included his work amongst other notable luminaries like Marshall Goldsmith and Brian Tracy.

His published articles have appeared in over 50 leading professional journals, newsletters, and online sources; and his work has been featured in Fast Company, Business Week, The Globe and Mail, The Economist, Investor’s Business Daily and The Financial Times.

His consulting expertise was acknowledged in 2008 when he was identified through independent research compiled and published by Lawdragon as “one of the most trusted names in legal consulting" and his three decades of experience in consulting led to his being the subject of a Harvard Law School Case Study entitled: Innovations In Legal Consulting (2011).

Patrick has served at least one of the top ten largest law firms in each of over a dozen different countries on issues associated with strategic differentiation, improving profitability, client service excellence, and effective law firm management.


McKenna did his MBA graduate work at the Canadian School of Management and holds professional certifications in both accounting and management (P.Mgr.) Patrick is also among the first alumni at Harvard’s Leadership in Professional Service Firms program.

Professional Associations & Memberships

American Bar Association, Canadian Bar Association, International Bar Association, Strategic Planning Society, American Management Association

Honors and Awards

• Initiated and subsequently served as Article Review Board Chairman for the 'Edge Awards' - given to commemorate the best articles published each year in the ABA's Law Practice Magazine (1998 - present)

• Identified by as one of the twenty international visionaries in the legal profession for their “vision, sheer hard work, professional eminence and humanity” (2000)

• Co-authored (with David H. Maister) one of the best business books of 2002 - as awarded by Soundview Executive Book Summaries

• International Professional of the Year (Management Consulting to Professional Service Firms, 2005) - IBC, Cambridge England

• Identified through independent research compiled and published by Lawdragon as one of "the most trusted names in legal consulting" (2008)

• Three decades of experience in consulting led to being the subject of a Harvard Law School Case Study entitled: Innovations In Legal Consulting (2011)

This profile may constitute attorney advertising. Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome. Any correspondence with this profile holder does not constitute a client/attorney relationship. Neither the content on this profile nor transmissions between you and the profile holder through this profile are intended to provide legal or other advice or to create an attorney-client relationship.

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