Are you worried that technology is going to take over the legal profession and make lawyer obsolete? Then rainmaking coach and trainer, Jaimie Field‘s latest post is for you! And she’s speaking my language, because the focus is on relationships.

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There is a lot of chatter lately about whether the legal industry is going to be taken over by technology.  Are lawyers in danger of becoming obsolete?

In 2016, the answer is no.  However, that doesn’t mean that certain tasks in which attorneys are currently engaged won’t be taken over by the rise of the machines. In fact, it’s happening now.    

Technology is not out to make lawyers obsolete; in fact, I would argue that technology is there to help you grow your practice but in a different way than was done in the past.  When we bring in technology some of the tasks you have – for example: administrative work, document review, e-discovery, legal research – these tasks can be done quicker and in a more cost effective manner for your clients.

However, we are still in an industry in which relationship building skills and communication abilities are paramount.  A study done by two professors entitled Can Robots Be Lawyer? Computers Lawyers and the Practice of Law astutely notes:

The vast majority of a lawyer’s personal interactions, however, continue to require spontaneity, unstructured communication, and emotional intelligence. Examples are plentiful: A lawyer may need to push a client to execute a will; spend hours interviewing a criminal defendant to develop enough trust to elicit full information; or read a deponent’s facial expression and body language to determine how to proceed with questioning.”

But more importantly, for rainmaking purposes, the authors go on to write:

Moreover, many individual clients report that a lawyer’s trustworthiness and ability to provide a close and personal relationship are among the most important traits they look for from a lawyer—far more important than the lawyer’s training, competence, or specialty.”

What computers can and will do is free up significant time that you currently use on the tasks listed above (and probably more in the future) and allow you use the time effectively for business development and marketing.

As I have always said, Rainmaking = Relationships.  And this is a skill that not only you can learn but that computers cannot take away from you.

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Photo of Lindsay Griffiths Lindsay Griffiths

Lindsay Griffiths is the International Lawyers Network’s Executive Director. She is a dynamic, influential international executive and marketing thought leader with a passion for relationship development and authoring impactful content. Griffiths is a driven, strategic leader who implements creative initiatives to achieve the…

Lindsay Griffiths is the International Lawyers Network’s Executive Director. She is a dynamic, influential international executive and marketing thought leader with a passion for relationship development and authoring impactful content. Griffiths is a driven, strategic leader who implements creative initiatives to achieve the goals of a global professional services network. She manages all major aspects of the Network, including recruitment, member retention, and providing exceptional client service to an international membership base.

In her role as Executive Director, Griffiths manages a mix of international programs, engages a diverse global community, and develops an international membership base. She leads the development and successful implementation of major organizational initiatives, manages interpersonal relationships, and possesses executive presence with audiences of internal and external stakeholders. Griffiths excels at project management, organization, and planning, writes and speaks with influence and authority, and works independently while demonstrating flexibility in thinking, especially in challenging situations. She also adapts to diverse and dynamic environments with constant assessment and recalibration.

JD Supra Readers Choice Top Author 2019

In 2021, the ILN was honored as Global Law Firm Network of the Year by The Lawyer European Awards, and in 2016 and 2017, they were shortlisted as Global Law Firm Network of the Year. Since 2011, the Network has been listed as a Chambers & Partners Leading Law Firm Network, recently increasing this ranking to be included in the top two percent of law firm networks globally, as well as adding two regional rankings. She was awarded “Thought Leader of the Year” by the Legal Marketing Association’s New York chapter in 2014 for her substantive contributions to the industry and was included in Clio’s list of “34 People in Legal You Should Follow on Twitter.” She was also chosen for the American Bar Association Journal’s inaugural Web 100‘s Best Law Blogs, where judge Ivy Grey said “This blog is outstanding, thoughtful, and useful.” Ms. Griffiths was recently chosen as a Top Author by JD Supra in their 2019 Readers’ Choice Awards, for the level of engagement and visibility she attained with readers on the topic of marketing & business development. She has been the author of Zen & the Art of Legal Networking since February of 2009.