Law Firm Management

Ep 111 – Getting Paid is The Job

We’re talking about getting paid – first with an article by Jared Correia in Attorney at Work, and then we talk to Marco Brown about his CLE presentation “Getting Paid: Your #1 Job”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shake Your Moneymaker

Today’s Hot Take is from AttorneyatWork.com,“Shake Your Moneymaker: Get Paid in 2017,” by Jared Correia. He writes:

“Lawyers and money do not go together like peas and carrots. Actually, let me rephrase that: Lawyers and talking about money do not go together like peas and carrots. Lawyers and managing money do not go together like peas and carrots. And lawyers and setting competitive market rates do not go together like peas and carrots.
Lawyers and making money, however? Yeah, that goes together like peas and carrots. Lawyers, like every group of business professionals, want to make money. It is the antecedents for doing so, however, that get in the way. Peas, meet … Brussel sprouts.”

What you can do – or should do if you’re looking to avoid problems – is:
– Discuss Money Upfront
– Rehab your Rates
– Adopt Electronic Payment
– Understand overhead vs revenue
– Make efforts towards collections

It’s trust that creates these gaps in accountability – we trust that things will be handled, but we don’t do anything actively to ensure that the trust comes true…?

“Decide to be worth the work you do. If you don’t collect on it, it won’t matter.”

Marco Brown is the managing partner at Brown Law, a family law firm in Utah – He got his JD from the University of Nebraska School of Law, has been lauded and recognized as Utah’s Outstanding Family Lawyer of the Year, sits on all of the bars, and is distinguished beyond distinction. After all this high flying success, we are lucky enough Marco has decided to land his plane on the LAWsome airfields today.

Learn more about Marco HERE

Get More Information About Getting Paid For The Work You Do.

Be sure to listen to the entire podcast episode for information and conversation about how you can be promptly and fairly compensated for the services you provide – and put systems in to place to ensure it’s not just a short term quick fix. If you want more LAWsome subscribe to the show n your favorite podcast platform, and for the latest in legal marketing insights and information be sure to subscribe to the Consultwebs Newsletter here –>SUBSCRIBE<—

 

 

Ep 106 – Legal Project Management

We talk legal tech & business trends in 2020, and then we talk legal project management and get agile and lean w/ Jessica Robinson of Casepoint.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

25+ Legal Tech and Business of Law Predictions for 2020

Today’s Hot Take comes to us from Aderant.com, “25+ Legal Tech and Business of Law Predictions for 2020.” There’s quite a lot to unpack here, but the article is basically the results of a survey:

“For the third year in a row, we’ve reached out to big thinkers in the legal community and asked them for their predictions for legal tech and the business of law in 2020. Some of these predictions are grand, and some are pointed; all are interesting.Importantly, these fascinating predictions are not grouped or ordered by any importance.”

Two of these predictions really stuck out to us and are relevant to today’s episode regarding project management.

The first one mentions lean and six sigma project management strategies:

“Pricing and process come back into focus – Legal technology will continue to advance, especially with the advent of AI. There will be more attention paid to client focus, improved value and efficiency. Alternative fee arrangements and other pricing strategies will be brought back into a renewed focus coupled with a focus on process improvement and project management, employing lean and six sigma principles to providing efficient and cost-effective legal services.”

– Frederick J. Esposito, Jr., MBA, CLM, Rivkin Radler LLP

The second is that project management decisions are going to be less in the hands of the finance folks, and more in the hands of those in the firm with more client experience:

“As sophistication grows across the legal industry, both the AmLaw 100 and Second Hundred firms will understand Pricing sits at the intersection of Marketing/Business Development/Client Relationships, which will push the P+PM functions out of the Finance silo. Look for an increase in Chief Pricing Officer roles to emerge as a result.”

– Patrick Johansen, CLM, CPP, Pricing Strategist, Law Firm Pricing

“Given all the change – the skill set to solve problems is project management.”

Jessica Robinson is the vice president of client services for Casepoint – an attorney with more than 17 years of experience in the legal industry, 16 of which were spent working for such notable Am Law 100 firms as Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, Morrison & Foerster, Crowell & Moring, and Paul Hastings. She has served in a variety of operational leadership roles, ranging from Litigation Support and Senior Firmwide eDiscovery Resource Manager to Firmwide Director of eData Practice Support and the eData Project Management Office. Jessica earned her J.D. from Wake Forest University School of Law and her M.B.A. from Wake Forest University, Babcock Graduate School of Business.

Learn more about Jessica Robinson HERE

Check out a demo of Casepoint eDiscovery platform HERE

Get More Information About E-Discovery and Legal Project Management

Be sure to listen to the entire podcast episode for information and conversation about how to use Casepoint for e-discovery, how project management can benefit a law firm and help lawyers be more effective problem solvers and more. If you want more LAWsome subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast platform, and for the latest in legal marketing insights and information be sure to subscribe to the Consultwebs Newsletter here –>SUBSCRIBE<—

 

Ep 104 – Intake, Marketing, and Leads

We discuss the must-haves for successful law firm intake processes, and then we talk with master of intake-fu, Tom Ball from Alert Communications.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5 Absolute Musts for Effective Law Firm Intake

Today’s Hot Take is from Consultwebs.com “5 Absolute Musts for Effective Law Firm Intake.” Key takeaways here are:

1 – Real People
2 – Sensitivity/Empathy
3 – Prompt Response Time
4 – Lead Tracking
5 – Follow-Up and Nurturing

Intake often gets overlooked and written off as a lesser part of the business, but intake is serious business. Without effective intake and proper notes, you never know the true return you’re getting. You also miss out on knowing where your opportunities for improvement are. You can learn a lot from each prospective client who calls in, even if it’s a case that isn’t in your practice area. Invest in your intake system and watch your return on investment improve as more cases flow in.

Making The Most of Those Calls and Contact Forms

Tom Ball has been the Marketing & Sales Director for Alert Communications since 2017. Founded in 1965, Alert is an Intake & Retainer agency, currently servicing thousands of lawyers and hundreds of legal marketing agencies across the nation.

Learn more about Tom Ball Here.

Get More Information About Intake Fixes, Mistakes and Strategies and More

Be sure to listen to the entire podcast episode for information and conversation about how to use intake more effectively. If you want more LAWsome subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast platform, and for the latest in legal marketing insights and information be sure to subscribe to the Consultwebs Newsletter here –>SUBSCRIBE<—

 

 

 

 

 

EP 102 – A LAWsome Year End Episode

We look forward to the new year and talk about trends, topics, we’ve seen in the past, what we see coming in the future, and what we’re hopeful for.

 

 

 

 

 

 

This has been an amazing second year for our show. We have tripled our listenership, are way over 30,000 downloads, we’ve racked up almost 3,000 hours of playtime through Apple podcasts, available in 86 digital destinations across the world – and we’re just getting warmed up!

It is a profound honor to meet the amazing guests that power this show, learn about the legal community, and discover fun ways to entertain and inform lawyers on marketing and law firm development. We have a blast making this show and learning and we hope you have the same experience.

Please, reach out, review the show, send us a message on topics you want to hear, guests you think would be LAWSome – or if you want to be on the show. Tell us what you like, what you hate and we will be here to listen to all of the feedback, like you have been so kind to listen to us.

We will be back here, same day, in the same way, next year – until then – “stay LAWsome”

Ep 101 – A LAWsome Christmas Carol

When was the last time you were enchanted?

This holiday season, Consultwebs presents, a legal podcast experience unlike any you’ve ever heard; “A LAWsome Christmas Carol”

“A LAWsome Christmas Carol” brings Dickens’ famous cautionary tale to the world of legal marketing & technology in a festive and unforgettable way. A lawyer stuck in the past is taken on a voyage by time-traveling spirits, and along the journey, learns the true meaning of the law firm.

Featuring:

  • Classic performances by lawyers, legal professionals, teachers, and industry leaders
  • Timeless advice on legal marketing, tech, & law firm development
  • An original musical score, haunting sound design, tacos, and so much more!

“A LAWsome Christmas Carol” is sure to delight even the most humbug lawyer under your tree.

Starring: Mike Whelan, Erin Levine, Jess Birken, Michael Simon, Jared Correia, Cat Moon, David Kempston, Paul Julius, and Jacob Sanders.

Written, Scored, and Produced for Audio – Jacob Sanders

 

“Kempston’s Ghost” animatic by Neon Brown

geo-synchronus legislative cloud artificial intelligence

Special thanks to our sponsor, iLaw Worldwide

 

 

Ep 100 – Running a Successful Law Firm (and other things)

Why some business books miss the mark, and an on-target discussion with immigration lawyer, advocate, and author, Ruby Powers about her new book, “Build and Manage Your Successful Immigration Law Practice (Without Losing Your Mind)”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Business Books – Useful or Formulaic?

Today’s Hot Take comes to us from the Huffington Post, called “Why Business Books Suck” by Dave Logan. He writes:

“So what’s the problem here? In the form it’s being used, the hero’s journey focuses on personal achievement, not on leading others. The closest the story gets to leadership is being a role model for other heroes. The full problem with the hero’s journey, including a hint of something very important from George Lucas, is explored in a longer piece.

What if you get an entire group of people all trying to be Luke Skywalker (or Neo or Spiderman)? You get a mammoth clashing of egos, all struggling for supremacy and destroying everything around them. In two words, Wall Street. Or management of most major companies.”

Books with advice, how-to, in the business world are hard to get right. It ends up being more about the person writing the book, than about the person reading it. Luck is downplayed – or sidestepped entirely – and it all turns into a feelgood “you-can-do-it” that ends up making people feel empty because the reality is the book is more an autobiography disguised as a business strategy.

Ruby’s book is the exact opposite – she was writing it to the unprepared version of herself, rather than the heroic and complete version….maybe people like stories of personal triumph to make a business book more palatable, but in the end, folks need straight advice.

Running With Ruby

Ruby Powers is the founder and managing attorney of Powers Law Group, which focuses solely on immigration law and just recently celebrated its 10th year.

Her new book “Build and Manage Your Successful Immigration Law Practice (Without Losing Your Mind”) is geared towards immigration attorneys starting out, but as she’s discovered since it’s publishing, many of the concepts in her book relate to established lawyers looking to grow their practice.

Along with all this, Ruby is taking her advocacy to the next level and running for state representative in Texas for District 134 in 2020.  Despite having a dozen different plates spinning at once, Ruby was gracious enough to take a break from her busy schedule to sit down with us today.

Learn more about Ruby HERE

Learn About her Campaign for Texas District 134 HERE

Buy the book “Build and Manage Your Successful Immigration Law Practice (Without Losing Your Mind”)

Get More Information About Management Strategies For Law Firms, Using Public Relations and Local Media Effectively and More

Be sure to listen to the entire podcast episode for information and conversation about how to use PR and marketing, how to make smart business decisions and how to grow your law firm. If you want more LAWsome subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast platform, and for the latest in legal marketing insights and information be sure to subscribe to the Consultwebs Newsletter here –>SUBSCRIBE<—

 

Ep 98 – Legal Recruiting

We hear advice on legal careers, recruiting, when to move, stay, or switch, and how to move in the lawyer marketplace with confidence.

 

Average Attorney Salary Might Surprise New Lawyers

Today’s Hot Take comes to us from AboveTheLaw.com, “Average Attorney Salary Might Surprise New Lawyers (And Judges’ Average Earnings Are Even Lower)” by Jonathan Wolf. Wolf writes:

“I gave a little presentation to my local bar association a couple weeks ago. Among other things, I talked about attorney salaries and how they differ regionally, and I sifted through a lot of data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Turns out the BLS gathers a lot of helpful information about lawyers.

Really, it’s not all bad news. The BLS estimated mean annual wage for lawyers is a respectable $144,230.

Of course, like a lot of averages, this one is inflated by the top end of the market. The median annual wage for lawyers, $120,910, is substantially lower than their mean annual wage. On the Cravath Scale, some benchmark for legal salaries – top wage is $182,490 – bottom is $58,220.” That’s a wide gap with wide expectations. A small percentage of lawyers at the top throw off the numbers – so you may end up making $58k a year?

You can’t really fault the industry here, and as you walk the path there is plenty  of room to repeat the mantra, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”

We think this idea of introspection and taking stock of oneself is important. If you are searching for greater pay or greater responsibilities or a higher level of satisfaction, start with you.

Honestly though, issues like this aren’t exclusive to lawyers. People talk about the wage gap – and this article illustrates it to a certain extent, but there is also income consolidation, which people look at like a mystical economic theory, but the fact is when there’s less money to go around, people get paid LESS, and they don’t get raises that keep up with the cost of living (which coincidentally goes up because of trade wars, taxes etc)

Being a lawyer ain’t the ticket to easy street it used to be and it takes longer – if you stay in place – to build up that income. Might be time to start thinking about it like those of us in the creative/marketing end of things, where if the fastest way to get better positions and higher wages it to change jobs at regular intervals.

When You Need To Find A Needle In A Haystack

With more than a dozen years of legal recruiting experience, Steven Lynch is the go-to name law firms and companies speak when they need assistance recruiting attorneys whose experiences and abilities match their requirements, culture and objectives.

Keeping the grass green on both sides, Steven also helps high-level legal talent at all ages and stages of their careers, find ideal positions where they can thrive and achieve.

Steven is a frequent writer and media commentator on legal hiring and recruiting issues, has been featured in many industry trade publications, including HR.com, UpJourney, and SmarterCX, and before all that, he served as the Vice President of the American Arbitration Association.

Learn more about Steven Lynch HERE

Get More Information About Recruiting Strategies For Law Firms and Career Satisfaction For Attorneys

Be sure to listen to the entire podcast episode for information and conversation about how to find the right people or BE the right person for your law firm, and how to honestly assess and build on what you personally need to get satisfaction from your next job. If you want more LAWsome subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast platform, and for the latest in legal marketing insights and information be sure to subscribe to the Consultwebs Newsletter here –>SUBSCRIBE<—

 

Ep 95 – Decision Science & Legal Marketing

On the show today we talk about decision science, behavior and legal marketing & advertising with Nika Kabiri from Kabiri Consulting.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Understanding and Improving Decision Making Will Decidedly Become a Greater and Greater Priority For Everyone

Today’s Hot Take is “The Mechanics of Choice” by Eric Wargo on Psychological Science .org. He writes:

“Hardly a minute goes by in our lives when we don’t make them. Decisions can be as small as our choices of words or what to have for lunch, and they can be as big as how to plan for retirement or what treatment to choose for a disease. They can balance certainties against risks. They can balance short-term gratification against long-term benefits. They can clearly be right or wrong — but often enough, they involve likelihoods and possibilities that are uncertain, even in the light of all available information.”

This is the heart of it all – marketing, business development, legal tech – understanding how decisions are made is key and I wish more marketers dove into this stuff without the desire to brainwash people – understanding this is to use it concert with nature, not against it for crappy products that will fail. People are more averse to loss than gain.

“In a world ever more awash in choices, people become constant deciders. And the stakes of our decisions — and the consequences of errors — are growing.

“Errors induced by biases in judgment lead decision makers to undersave for retirement, engage in needless conflict, marry the wrong partners, accept the wrong jobs, and wrongly invade countries.”

In a knowledge-based economy . . . a knowledge worker’s primary deliverable is a good decision. In addition, more and more people are being tasked with making decisions that are likely to be biased because of the presence of too much information, time pressure, simultaneous choice, or some other constraint. [And] as the economy becomes increasingly global, each biased decision is likely to have implications for a broader swath of society.

In such a world, understanding and improving decision making will decidedly become a greater and greater priority for everyone.”

Helping Businesses Effectively Influence Consumer Behavior and Make Better Decisions

Nika Kabiri has spent over two decades studying how people make decisions in a variety of contexts, including society, business, and politics. She received her PhD and Masters in Sociology at the University of Washington, a JD from the University of Texas School of Law, has led research projects for clients in the non-profit, retail, tech, and legal sectors, including directoral stops at Avvo and “Ipsos” a market research company.

Now, Nika brings her unique combination of market research expertise, consumer behavior insights and rigorous academic training to Kabiri Consulting, which helps businesses effectively influence consumer behavior and make better decisions on their own – we are very grateful she could find the time to join us today.

Learn more about Nika Kabiri HERE

Get More Information About Decision Science, Legal Consumer Behavior, and Data Based Marketing

Be sure to listen to the entire podcast episode for information and conversation about why people make the choices they do, how to use data to understand decisions and how to apply these principles to everything in your life.  If you want more LAWsome subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast platform, and for the latest in legal marketing insights and information be sure to subscribe to the Consultwebs Newsletter here –>SUBSCRIBE<—

Ep 92 – The Million Dollar Attorney

We sit down with Wendy Witt, founder of the Million Dollar Attorney, to find out how she helps lawyers change their mindsets, achieve specific goals, and grow their firms.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How To Break $1M In Revenue In A Law Firm Staffed Only By The Owners

Toady’s Hot Take is from Forbes.com, “He Said “No” To Law-Firm Life And Built A Six-Figure Solo Practice Helping Others In Need, ” by Elaine Pofeldt. This is the third post of a three part series that chronicles the journey of a lawyer from solo to joining a larger firm and then back to solo. She writes:

“The number of professionals making decisions like Lima’s is rising. The total tally of small businesses in the U.S.—most of them one-person operations—will rise from about 30 million in 2014 to about 42 million in 2026, according to Intuit’s Future of Small Business report, which dubs solo firms “personal businesses.” Lima is among a growing number of solopreneurs who are figuring out how to generate six-figure revenue while navigating the challenges of operating independently.”

It’s not so far-fetched really – with more tech advances and gig-working lawyers bridging the gap between the capabilities of a small firm and a larger firm, it seems the major barriers left are those created by law firm culture and self doubt.

Making Millionaires out of Lawyers

Wendy Witt spent 15 years as a Trusts and Estates Attorney before moving to the business side becoming a Master Law Firm Business Strategist and Attorney Success Consultant and launching “Million Dollar Attorney” where she’s helped over 8000 lawyers step on the gas, accelerate their firms financial growth, and achieve the success and freedom they crave. Wendy got her JD from the Dickinson School of Law, she’s got a degree in psychology, she’s an ABA published author, she’s been quoted and noted everywhere, and now, after all that, her career takes a stunning turn with an appearance on the LAWsome podcast

Learn more about Wendy Witt HERE

Get More Information About Achieving Measurable Financial Success and Personal Freedom for Lawyers

Be sure to listen to the entire podcast episode for information and conversation about how to build a system for success, earn the money you want and still have the time to do what you enjoy.  If you want more LAWsome subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast platform, and for the latest in legal marketing insights and information be sure to subscribe to the Consultwebs Newsletter here –>SUBSCRIBE<—

 

Ep 87 – The Paralegal Episode!

On the show today we discuss the added value Paralegals provide to your firm, and then we talk to Lawyer, Podcaster, and Jedi Master Paralegal Instructor, Keith Shannon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Few Things to Keep In Mind

Our Hot Take today comes from the treasure trove of legal musings, the American Bar Association discussing the added value Paralegals can provide to your firm, “No, a paralegal is not a lawyer” By Frances P. Kao. This is a very well written piece, and in it you will learn about how to best utilize your paralegals, and what pitfalls you need to avoid, primarily:

Ethical problems –
Unauthorized Practice of Law
Advice
Fee Splitting
Establishing a legal relationship

After all, it is the lawyer’s obligation to ensure that the paralegal is properly screened, adequately trained, performs appropriate tasks, maintains high ethical standards and produces a competent work product.

The Paralegal Whisperer

Keith Shannon is an instructor in the paralegal technology training program at Central Piedmont Community College in North Carolina. He got his BA and Masters in journalism, his JD from University of Kentucky, and he’s a member of Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina State Bars. In addition to teaching paralegal studies, Keith is also an expert in law firm management and technology. When he isn’t sniffing chalk and griping about term papers, Keith is hilarious, creative, an amazing voice on Twitter, as well as on his own musical theater podcast he runs with his daughter, and we are grateful he could join us today on the the show.

Learn More About Keith Shannon HERE

Get More Information About Paralegals, Law Firm Management, Organization & More

Be sure to listen to the entire podcast episode for information and conversation about finding, training and utilizing paralegals as well as thoughts on legal tech, organizational skills and more.  If you want more LAWsome subscribe to the show on your favorite podcast platform, and for the latest in legal marketing insights and information be sure to subscribe to the Consultwebs Newsletter here –>SUBSCRIBE<—