"Glaxo to Stop Paying Doctors To Boost Drugs" by Katie Thomas was a headline in the December 17, 2013 issue of The New York Times. Interesting but, according to the piece, not the only news. Glaxo is also changing the compensation system for its sales representatives. Gone will be compensation based on the number of prescriptions doctors write. In will be compensation based on technical knowledge, the quality of service provided to clients to improve patient care, and the company's business performance.
The articles notes that this is a radical change. Does the old system sound familar? Sure, it is just a variation on the billlable hour, where compesation rewards are parceled out based not on client care, but on brute numbers. A system where a lawyer is worse off settling a case to the client's satisfaction and losing the hours than not settling and getting the hours.
Someday the profession will change, the model more closely approximating a Glaxo model or those of professional consulting firms. But the system will not go easily. Entrenced power never does.
Until then, take two aspirin and call us in the morning.