[IMGCAP(1)] Dear Rebecca,

I’ve heard you ask firms how “deep” their talent bench is. How deep should it be? We currently have 27 partners, and four more on the partnership track, plus a dozen or so “high potentials.” Does this make a deep enough bench?

Signed,
Talent Scout

Dear Scout,
Great question! The best explanation I’ve heard comes from Sam Allred (Upstream Academy) who says you should have 200 percent bench strength. In other words, for every partner you have, you should have two strong players on the bench. In your case, with 27 partners, you need 54 folks who are on the partnership track or high potentials. Sam explains that with a 2:1 ratio, you’ve got ample allowance for those who won’t pursue partnership, or who may leave the firm.

Good luck, Scout!

Have a question for Rebecca? Email her: rr@nextgenerationconsulting.com.