Interview with Karl Chapman

Posted in Interviews on 21 Sep 2012

What does your Twitter profile say?

  • CEO at Riverview Law, owner of AdviserPlus and proud of the people in both! Lifelong Chelsea, music and black labrador fan! Love my girls! (@KarlChapman100)

Describe your firm in three words.

  • Fun, different and customer-focused.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

  • Working with and meeting great people; whether they are team members, customers, potential customers, strategic partners or commentators etc. Life is far too short to spend time doing a job you don't love with people you don't respect.

In these tough economic times, what is the most challenging element of your job?

  • Managing fast growth. You CAN build big businesses in a recession and that's what we're doing. Riverview Law has all the advantages of a new entrant into the market; no baggage, no legacy technology systems and no partner structure. We see huge opportunities as the legal market changes.

In your view, what does the future hold for the legal profession; what will be the 'next big thing' in the industry?

  • The 'next big thing' is already here; the rapid change in the way legal services are delivered and by whom. This is being driven by a combination of changing customer demands, de-regulation, technology and economic weakness. Many law firms face a 'perfect storm' and will find it hard to respond effectively given their culture and the consequences of their partnership models. Riverview Law will help to change the way businesses use, buy and measure legal services.

Who's been the biggest single influence or inspiration in your career and why?

  • Barrie Clark. Barrie was the FD at the first business I worked in. He joined us in 1990 when we acquired the company he was a part owner of. He taught me many things including; it is better to be underpaid than overpaid, don't allow people to delegate and abdicate responsibility and if you're an idiot, you're an idiot irrespective of what your job title is!

What has been your greatest achievement so far in life?

  • No debate, my two wonderful daughters; particularly given they're both Chelsea fans!

Please tell us about you.

  • Grew up in Hampshire. Went to Harrow. Well, Harrow Way Comprehensive School in Andover! Read Law at Birmingham University. Great place... I've been married to my first (!) wife for nearly 25 years. We have two lovely daughters who constantly make me laugh and whom I'm very proud of. I love Chelsea, music and wine (not always at the same time!). Being in Munich with my youngest daughter to see Chelsea win the European Cup has made 2012 very memorable! On top of my 50th birthday, the Jubilee celebrations AND we still have the Olympics to come; this year is proving to be a good one! Apart from my family, I love the excitement of growing big and sustainable businesses.

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