Altman Weil recently released their “Law Firms in Transition” survey, which is now in its tenth year. The survey, which includes responses from half of US law firms with 50 or more lawyers, was initially developed as a response to the 2008 recession, to help firms understand how other firms were reacting to the marketplace and the challenges being presented. As its authors state, “We sought to provide clear, credible information that would facilitate law firm planning and operational decision making.” After a decade of change, the survey emphasizes three important concepts, which dovetail nicely with our recent discussions on the law firm of the future, and particularly the idea that the future is happening NOW. Continue Reading
We’ve had a lot of discussion over the past several years about what the future of legal services will look like, and what critical characteristics and ideas will be necessary for lawyers and law firms to embrace in order to operate within it successfully. Last week, we opened the conversation again with the release of HighQ’s updated eBook on SmartLaw addressing these concepts, and as we did with the first eBook, I’d like to delve a little further into what some of the other authors had to say.
Let’s kick this off with two of my favorites – Jordan Furlong and D. Casey Flaherty, who had essentially the same core message: the future is now. You may remember that this isn’t the first time we’ve addressed this concept here on Zen either – looking back to 2016 and the Altman Weil CLO study, this was already a call to action. Flaherty and Furlong are continuing to beat the drum on this too, and each has an important message for firms and their lawyers. Continue Reading
Long-time readers of Zen may remember when we first started talking about the future of the law firm and the idea of “SmartLaw” in 2016, when HighQ asked the question “What do you believe lawyers and law firms need to do to prepare for the future of legal services?” Over the course of several posts, we delved into the answers of a number of industry experts, which supported the idea that clients, culture, and technology would be key.
Since then, HighQ observes that the concept of SmartLaw has evolved:
Future-focused law firms have found success putting the concept to work as they create amazing client experiences, adopt a culture of change and use technology to empower greater efficiency. Even so, as the industry continues to change, so must the SmartLaw concept.
In addition to the original three areas of focus, we now believe that firms must also prioritise data and process. Together, these five pillars of clients, culture, technology, data and process create SmartLaw 2.0. These key areas will be critical to the success of firms in the future.”
Bearing these pillars in mind, HighQ asked a number of experts again, “What do you believe lawyers and law firms need to do to prepare for the future of legal services?” Continue Reading
In order to keep them happy, we’ve all been told at one time or another to “think like a client.”
The idea of thinking like your client can be a bit overwhelming when you add it to your existing workload – while we all endeavor to understand our clients’ challenges, concerns, and pain points no matter what field we’re in, unless we’ve spent time there ourselves, we’re only privy to second-hand knowledge (for the most part).
But whether we’ve been on the client side in our own industries or not, we’ve all been and are clients – as lawyers, you are purchasers of various services, from consultants to building services to office products and more. In our personal lives, we are consumers of goods and services, including everything from groceries and electronics to personal care, travel, etc. At some point, we’ve likely all considered what it is we want from those interactions – things such as understanding of what you’re really asking, common courtesy, on-time delivery, exceeding expectations, etc. Continue Reading
A few years ago while traveling, I had the opportunity to read an article about how private labels in grocery stores were gaining traction against national brands. While the article isn’t available online anymore, the story offers some interesting food for thought (no pun intended) for the legal industry and the way that law firms are tackling the challenges presented by the current marketplace.
The article focused on the Publix Brand Challenge, which still takes place today:
Several times a year, the Publix Super Markets chain in the Southeast pits three to five of its store-brand products against their national-brand equivalents…If customers buy one of the featured national-brand products, they’ll get the Publix store-branded version for free. ‘Buy theirs, get ours free,’ the ad trumpets. ‘We think you’ll prefer Publix.’”
In today’s Rainmaking Recommendation post from expert and trainer, Jaimie Field, she addresses a question you likely know the answer to – are all rainmaking activities created equal? And if not, should you be devoting your time to lower value activities, and considering “rainmaking” checked off your to-do list? Read on…
Ever since I became a Rainmaking Trainer and Coach more than 16 years ago, I have said over and over again that you need to do some marketing or business development activity every single day.
However, recently I was asked a question:
How much time should I spend on marketing and business development activities per week? Continue Reading
Legal directories have been both valuable, and a source of frustration, for lawyers and in-house counsel alike. Recently, a new directory appeared on the scene, threatening to disrupt what we’ve all been accepting for the last several decades – Top 3 Legal. In today’s guest post from founder Gareth Stephenson, learn more about the platform, and what makes it unique from other traditional directories.
Top 3 Legal (www.top3legal.com) launched last month alongside some compelling market research. Their key finding was that clients instruct new lawyers based on peer-to-peer recommendations 8x more than they use traditional legal directories. This desire of in-house counsel to collaborate and pool experiences is also reflected in the proliferation of in-house counsel networks. Continue Reading
The ILN is proud to announce our latest firm of the month, Müller & Partner Rechtsanwälte, Liechtenstein!
MÜLLER & PARTNER RECHTSANWÄLTE was founded in 1998 and has since then developed to become one of the most respected independent law firms in the Principality of Liechtenstein.
The firm specialises in litigation, specifically in representing clients before courts and public authorities under civil law, criminal law and public law, as well as legal consultancy in all fields of law. Within this context, the legal team of MÜLLER & PARTNER RECHTSANWÄLTE advises and represents clients from Liechtenstein and abroad. Continue Reading
If you haven’t had the opportunity to read retired soccer player, Abby Wambach’s remarks to the graduates of Barnard College, it’s worth taking a few minutes to give them a read. Wambach’s speech, and the discussion that we recently had at our Annual Conference with facilitator Wendy Merrill of Strategy Horse, which incorporated the concept of finding your “why?” are both things that have resonated deeply with me over the last few months. The idea of finding your “why?” focuses on digging down into the reason behind everything that you do, so that you give a purpose to it – it will be the driving force behind why your clients hire you, why you practice law, why other lawyers want to join your firm, and why young lawyers want to come into and stay with your practice.
A network is no different – it’s more than just a directory of names. It’s a living, breathing organism, and the thing that keeps people coming back to it and investing their time and energy into it is the why. Our “why” is defined by three guiding principles: Continue Reading