Posted in Rainmaking Recommendations

Rainmaking Recommendation from Jaimie Field: So, Tell Me What You Want; What You Really, Really Want

In today’s Rainmaking Recommendation from expert and trainer, Jaimie Field, she’s discussing one of my favorite things – working with your clients to find out what they really want.

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With all due respect to the Spice Girls (don’t tell anyone, but I know all of the lyrics to their most famous songs), the title of this post is actually referring to the fact that in order to become a Rainmaker, you need to know what your clients want.

And there is only one way to do this – ask them. Continue Reading

Posted in Future of the Law Firm, Law Firms, Leadership

How to be a Change Leader in Your Law Firm

We’ve been discussing the NEED for change a lot lately, and while many of us may understand the urgency, and have even begun undertaking some steps to effectuate change within our firms and organizations, others may be asking what it actually means to be a leader of change.

Fortunately, there are some great resources out there to help guide you through the process. One of these is John P. Kotter’s book, Leading Change, which I was challenged to read a few years ago as part of a leadership conference I participated in. While the book itself was a bit unpalatable – I felt that Kotter could have said more with less, and that his Harvard degree gave him too much license for arrogance – there are some solid suggestions for leading change that can get you started. Let’s distill the more salient points of the book here, and if you’d like to read it in full, I encourage you to pick up a copy of the book for further examples and depth.  Continue Reading

Posted in Future of the Law Firm, Law Firm Client Service, Law Firms, Leadership, Legal

Law Firm Leaders: Time to Address Data Poverty

This is just a guess, but I suspect that most of us didn’t get into the legal industry because we love data, right?

If we loved data, we’d be elsewhere.

But…bad news. Data is one of those things that we have to start embracing as the industry changes in order to stay relevant. It sounds terrible and cumbersome, but truthfully, once you invest the time to put processes in place to collect and mine your data, the return you’ll get is huge. You’ll see where you can be more efficient, create more value for clients, and identify ways for the firm to be more profitable. More value AND more profit? Data doesn’t sound so bad after all, does it?  Continue Reading

Posted in Firm of the Month

ILN Firm of the Month – MGRA & Associados, Portugal!

The ILN is proud to announce our latest firm of the month, MGRA & Associados, Portugal!
MGRA is an independent Portuguese full service law firm, focused on legal assistance to companies, corporations, investors, state, regulatory bodies and institutions in critical and complex aspects of their activities.

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Posted in Future of the Law Firm, Law Firm Client Service, Law Firms, Leadership

Law Firm Leaders: It’s Time to Act with Urgency

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 NOWContinue Reading

Posted in Future of the Law Firm, Law Firms, Leadership, Legal

SmartLaw: The Future is NOW

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

Posted in Future of the Law Firm, Law Firms, Leadership, Legal

SmartLaw: Critical to the Success of Future Law Firms

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

Posted in Law Firm Client Service

Lawyers: To Keep Your Clients, You’ve Gotta Think Like Them

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

Posted in Future of the Law Firm, Law Firm Client Service, Relationship Development

Differentiation Builds Unique Relationships with Your Clients

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.’”

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Posted in Rainmaking Recommendations

Rainmaking Recommendation from Jaimie Field: Focus on Rainmaking Every Day, But…..

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…

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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

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