The world of law is as treacherous as it is necessary. Every angle of the rules and regulations that keep a functioning society is directly expressed and revised by a single, relatively small population of highly educated achievers. As we start out, it really doesn’t cross our mind to start our own law firm. It’s seen as something for the older and more experienced. We rarely see billboards of young, fresh faces advertising their services to the masses. But maybe that’s because billboards are a relic of the old guard. It’s for the age demographic the lawyer buying said space is a part of. If you want to have a functioning and successful venture in law, there are new rules to abide by.
Here is how, in this day and age, you can achieve your own sustainable law firm.
Plan, do, focus
The first thing you have to do is completely cut off the naysayers. They’re going to give you the runaround. They’re going to tell you that you need more of everything. You don’t. There’s only one way to achieve something and it’s to plan and build. Once you’ve made that decision, you’ll have to focus on a single area of the law, and one that deals directly with individuals. It’s footwork. It’s going to be a grind. But building a reputation is one of those processes that will never change. Honing your skills to a single, focused specialty will ensure that you won’t be stepping on any more turf than you already will be by building your own firm.
Rework your process
Your next move is to align yourself with people who know how to optimize your business practice. If you’re just starting out, minimizing waste is the primary key to staying afloat and moving forward. According to field expert and law firm consultant, Lauren Currin, increasing your profitability is directly linked to maximizing your technology interface. This means having and SEO strategy, tailoring your website to turn clicks into clients, and utilizing digital platforms to keep track of all accounts. In doing this, it is crucial to be open to having your entire process put under a microscope. When it comes to gaining clients and establishing relationships, one cannot have an ego about how they do things. That’s another relic from the old times.
Build your network. Like any profession, a big chunk of getting to a palpable point of success is based on who you can refer your clients to. Having a referral network puts you directly in the middle of colleagues and big shots in the same field. It’s how you get your name out there. Keep your business card at all times, invite fellow lawyers to lunch, and have a pitch ready. Be sure to beef up your LinkedIN and positively engage with as many people as you see fit. Exclusivity, when starting anything, is not a winning strategy.
Having and building your own firm may be daunting. You’ll hit roadblocks and challenges at every corner. Even then, trust in the process. Tailor your expertise to those who could use it most, stay up to date with your online presence, and grow your referral network. If you get those 3 things right, you’ll be more than fine.