The Art of the Deal
Robin F. Bond, Esq.—employment strategist, deal-making attorney, published author—empowers and inspires clients to improve their positions in the workplace
by Bill Donahue

The biblical tale of David felling the larger-than-life Goliath strikes a chord with Robin F. Bond, Esq. She has, after all, earned a reputation for taking on much larger, better leveraged opponents and coming out the victor on behalf of her clients. Her weapon of choice, however, is no slingshot.

“I’m a big believer in planning,” says Bond, principal and founder of Transition Strategies LLC, an employment law firm based in Chesterbrook. “I’m also a very strategic thinker, which is a critically important quality for a lawyer to have. If you are informed and you have a plan and think ahead, it’s very difficult to get caught off guard.”

In virtually all workplace-related legal matters, Bond can be a powerful ally. She empowers all of her clients to negotiate for pay, perks and protections in both new job offers and for enhanced severance deals. She also represents clients in civil rights discrimination claims, noncompete disputes, breach-of-contract claims, executive-compensation matters and wage-payment claims.

Although she strives for peaceful negotiations, sometimes litigation is the best option. These instances include claims where an individual has been fired unjustly or in breach of contract, as well as age- and gender-based discrimination, sexual harassment, qui tam whistleblower, retaliation or workplace bullying. Under these circumstances, she fights on behalf of her clients against many of “the biggest, best and brightest” law firms and companies throughout the country.

“I find my work to be incredibly interesting and exciting,” she says. “Fighting for the underdogs, to me, is very energizing; it’s a big challenge to hold off the forces of those 800-lawyer law firms. It gets back to the importance of preparation and keeping a level head.”

She cites a recent victory, in which she represented a client who had been falsely accused of wrongdoing in the workplace. Bond not only helped vindicate her client but also produced evidence to show that one of the people who leveled the charges against her client was guilty of deception. In turn, the accuser’s employment with the company was summarily terminated.

Responding vs. Reacting
Originally from Beaver Falls, not far from the steel town of Pittsburgh, Bond began her career as an attorney with U.S. Air Force. In Texas, she prosecuted criminal cases and then served as a legal adviser to the Air Force Surgeon General’s staff. She ultimately became the legal counsel for Hahnemann Hospital in Philadelphia, where she oversaw and coordinated the hospital’s various legal functions.

At Hahnemann, she served as lead attorney on numerous major mergers and acquisitions, as well as on transactions of information systems and real estate. She also reviewed, negotiated and drafted employment and other organizational contracts, as well as managed and conducted internal investigations of allegations of wrongful conduct. She became a trusted adviser to the hospital’s senior management staff. By 1997, after having identified an underserved niche of executives who needed someone in their corners with her particular brand of deal-making know-how, Transition Strategies was born.

For more than 15 years now, Bond has been successfully serving the needs of executives and other employees. Since launching the firm, she has also provided counsel to small businesses, often with help from fellow attorney Walter J. Stickley Jr., the former general counsel of PQ Corp., a Malvern-based global manufacturer of performance materials. Because Bond and Stickley have been on both sides of the negotiating table, she believes her firm can troubleshoot workplace situations to solve problems in an efficient and effective manner.

“I have represented over 3,000 executives, and that’s a large database of knowledge to draw upon,” she says. “That experience has taught me that you have to be a good communicator, and you have to think about the way you want to respond to a situation and not simply react. I suggest that people give me a call at the first sign of a problem in the workplace. They might come to me and ask, ‘How can I respond to a problem boss or a toxic coworker?’ We’ll craft a response as opposed to a reaction.”

Although Bond advises clients to contact her before a situation arises, she admits this happens less often than she would prefer. These situations might include times when a prospective client anticipates being in line for a promotion, or when a relationship with a supervisor has soured, or when a client has reason to question his or her job security in advance of a looming layoff.

“If someone is considering new job offers, often I can improve their base pay, get them more equity and make the noncompete language better. It is not unusual for the scope of noncompete language to be too broad, so I work to make that scope as small as possible,” she says. “If someone is getting fired, or even if they think they are about to get fired, in many instances I can improve their severance deal or get them more time on the payroll. Legal battles can be expensive and draining—they were designed to be that way—so that’s why they need someone like me.”

Bond’s many accolades underscore the success of her forward-thinking approach. Her name routinely appears on the Pennsylvania “Super Lawyers” list for employment law and litigation; this honor is reserved for the top 5 percent of attorneys in her field, only a fraction of whom are women. Additionally, she has been honored as the Top Employment Attorney of the Main Line for 2014, as well as a Top Attorney in Employment Law by Suburban Life and Philadelphia Life magazines since 2010.

Bond has gained recognition in the mainstream media far beyond the boundaries of the Philadelphia market. She has been cited as an authority on matters of employment law in The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and The New York Post, as well as in Time, U.S. News & World Report and Forbes, among others. She has also served as a contributing legal analyst and commentator for programs on CNN and FOX, and has appeared as a commentator for truTV’s on-air trial coverage.

In addition to being a highly skilled attorney, Bond has earned praise for her work as an executive coach, a public speaker and an author. In November 2013, for example, she spoke at the Pennsylvania Conference for Women, an event that also featured former U.S. Secretaries of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Madeleine Albright. In May 2013, she published her first book, “How to Negotiate a Killer Job Offer,” a guidebook full of practical advice in the art of negotiation. The books illustrates how an employee can, for example, research his or her worth in the marketplace and demonstrate value to prospective employers when negotiating terms for compensation. Mark Cuban, most famous for his role on the ABC-TV reality competition “Shark Tank,” wrote her book’s foreword—simply, “Robin’s great. Buy this book!”

“What I love most about what I do is that I’m able to help people who are going through changes in their life,” says Bond, a single mother of two who has successfully balanced her work and family lives. “If someone is in a workplace situation that has them sad or uncertain, I can empower them to turn things around. Sometimes I can improve their situation in a very significant manner. Each deal is different.  It isn’t always in some life-changing way or by some life-changing amount, but it would be fair to say they are better off because they have worked with me.”

Robin F. Bond, Esq.
Transition Strategies LLC
88 Militia Hill Drive
Chesterbrook, PA 19087
610-640-5373 | |

Photograph by Jody Robinson