Built on a foundation of collaboration, relationship-building, trust, and cross-selling, Munsch Hardt Kopf & Harr, a top Dallas-based firm recognized as one of the city’s best places to work, has strategically navigated the legal landscape since its founding in 1985. These core values have remained steadfast, even as the market has rapidly evolved, staying true to their Texas roots.

Phil Appenzeller, CEO of Munsch Hardt Kopf & Harr, discusses how the firm’s collaborative spirit, a cornerstone of their practice, was tested during the COVID-19 pandemic. He highlights how empowering employees at every level contributes to a positive work culture, leading many to spend their entire careers at the firm.

Tune in to this episode of The Future is Bright to discover what’s next for Phil as he concludes his tenure as CEO, including a return to litigation and writing a musical!


“Lawyers are so relational based, it’s not like you’re coming in and doing an audit on a company. You’re actually coming in, sitting down with a client—I’ve got an individual client right now who’s trying to sell oil and gas interests and—you develop those relationships. I think it’s just a little bit different than those accounting firms that are a little bit more institutionalized.” (8:12 | Phil Appenzeller)

“I think clients want to know that if they hire Phil Appenzeller, they’re getting Phil Appenzeller. They’re not getting punted off to some other attorney that they don’t know. I go back to the relational—I just think the practice of law is still relational. I think clients want that relationship. I think the second thing they want is value. Everybody talks about rates. I’m not sure rates are as big an issue as it is ‘Did I get value for the work that was done?’” (8:41 | Phil Appenzeller)

“You want to create a place where people are happy coming to work. I always tell people when they ask, ‘Why do you stay at ‘Munsch?’ I say, ‘My best friends are here.’” (22:58 | Phil Appenzeller)