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Law Practice Management Tips Daily

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    You’ve spent the whole conference trying to get close to that potential business source, and you’re finally going to sit together at a banquet table. Or maybe a meal at a fancy restaurant is part of the interview process at the new firm you’re trying to join. Are you attending a formal-dress event thrown by your firm? Don’t blow it when you finally get to lunch or dinner. Proper table etiquette is part of good manners and can enhance or detract from your professional image.Read The Rest

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    Dealing with each email message in order in your inbox can lead to context switching — a major drag on productivity. The time spent doing triage can instead be used to handle business email. To minimize email triage time, build these five email habits.Read The Rest

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    Most of us have a generally good grasp of English usage and punctuation. The problem is that some usage and punctuation errors are so subtle and pervasive that we are tricked into thinking they are correct. Additionally, language use is constantly evolving, and thanks to the internet, it changes faster than ever. Throw in wrinkles such as how to express numbers and dates, when to italicize, or how to quote regulations and you have a proofreader’s migraine in the making. That's why you need a style guide and usage standards.Read The Rest

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    Recently Attorney at Work caught up with three innovative lawyers — all speakers at this spring’s Lawyernomics conference, hosted by Avvo — for their thoughts on what it means to run a law practice like a business, the biggest bet they’ve placed on themselves, and what challenges solo and small firm lawyers face in the next five years. Plus, a few favorite apps. Here's advice on moving your practice forward (and moving pianos) from Vanessa Vasquez de Lara, Ozan Varol and Jennifer Brandt.Read The Rest

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    The idea of a “tribe” is powerful. Who would not feel connected in a group of people tied together by common values, traditions or goals? Tribes have two distinct yet equally important roles to play in your law practice — particularly if you are a solo practitioner. First, connecting with the right tribe can help you bring in more clients. Second, a tribe of colleagues who share knowledge and provide much-needed support not only makes you a better lawyer — it can provide ethics safeguards.Read The Rest

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    You need to have relevant content available online so that when prospects search for information that touches on your specific area of expertise, they’ll be more likely to find you. Whether published articles, guest blog posts, webinars, podcasts, online forums or social media posts, when your experience shows through in your content, it becomes the foundation for effective marketing through thought leadership. This is a highly effective strategy for increasing visibility and accelerating market influence.Read The Rest

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    A client dinner is a beautiful thing. There’s food and wine and balloons and maybe a small token of appreciation. Somebody makes a speech that mentions “paradigm shift” 31 times and everyone falls asleep. Sometime between the main course and the cheesecake, the phones come out. Then, one by one, the whole room checks out … and you think to yourself, maybe there’s a better way. There is. Read The Rest

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    Blog posts, podcasts and videos aren’t the only options for sharing content on your law firm’s website and social media platforms. Infographics offer an easy way for readers to review — and quickly grasp — visualized data. They are an engaging way to educate clients and prospects and share your knowledge. To get the most out of infographics, though, you’ll need to follow a few best practices.Read The Rest

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    Most professionals have a complicated relationship with public speaking — particularly if it is a good business development opportunity. On the one hand, you're pretty sure you want this gig. It could be the start of something good for your practice. On the other, it can be darn intimidating when you stand up in front of a crowd knowing they expect you to be the expert. Talk about pressure! It will help you manage your anxiety and do an extraordinary speaking job if you get lots of information up-front. Here are five key questions to ask before you say you’re all in. Read The Rest

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  • 06/12/17--03:00: Understanding Blockchains
  • Blockchains — a sort of digital ledger best known for powering the bitcoin digital currency — have been getting a lot of attention from lawyers for their potential to change how people transact. Specifically, there are a number of software projects aimed at applying blockchains to create self-executing “smart contracts” (or at least trying to). Lawyers often deal with how people transact, so it’s probably a good idea for lawyers to understand blockchains. Understanding blockchains is hard, though, especially when approaching them from a legal standpoint without looking under the hood from a technology standpoint. Here are some of the best resources for understanding blockchains from outside of law.Read The Rest

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    Get to the Point has previously preached that specificity enhances credibility. In fact, I’m working on a cross-stitch with this aphorism to place on the office wall. Using an unsupported superlative flouts this rule.Read The Rest

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    Do you have $500? Good. You’re the proud owner of a new law firm! (Seriously, congratulations.) Thanks mostly to the spate of technology advances made possible by cloud services, it is cheaper to practice law than ever before, because lawyers can virtualize much of what they do. ... Of course, if that’s the direction you’re going to take, you’ll be limited to free software, which there is a lot of, even if most of it has not insignificant drawbacks. It turns out vendors that don’t charge for their services have less-robust products. Go figure. So, let’s get down to brass tacks: What else will you want to pay for, and how much will it cost?Read The Rest

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    James Jones Jr. bumped up against a problem most new lawyers face when he first hung his shingle: where to find clients. That later led to a big idea. After practicing law for a decade, Jones and co-founder Kristina Jones launched Court Buddy in 2015. Their platform uses instant-matching technology to provide a la carte legal services at flat rates to consumers and small businesses. Court Buddy won the 2017 American Bar Association Brown Select Award for Legal Access.Read The Rest

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    It’s difficult to attend any legal conference these days without hearing about technology and change, but it’s refreshing to discuss these topics with people who actually do the work. Recently, I moderated a panel for an ARK conference, "The New Spectrum of Legal Services," in Chicago. Our focus was the pressures on legal operations and general counsel. Panelists covered technology adoption, partnerships with law firms and information technology departments, plus their future strategic priorities.Read The Rest

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    I’ve finally figured out why so many lawyers want to know, “But how do I ask for the work?” It’s because the picture they have in their minds is a pretty darn scary one. It's something like this: You and a former colleague are sitting together over coffee or lunch. You share stories about your kids’ accomplishments and talk about your summer vacations — then you blurt out, “So … got any work you can give to me?” Yeah, that sounds awkward to me, too.Read The Rest

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    Many lawyers dictate their thoughts into a recording device, then send the recording to an assistant for transcription. This is a great time-saver for the lawyer. But the human transcriptionist today is gradually giving way to computer versions. When I say “gradually,” I mean that digital transcription doesn’t work well in all situations yet. Consider these uses for transcription (they’re listed from easiest to most difficult for computers to understand)Read The Rest

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    Law firms are busy places, and sometimes the smaller operations are even more chaotic than their large firm counterparts. It’s important to keep that behind the scenes, though. Your clients should see only a well-oiled machine — beginning the moment they first make contact with the firm. Often, the first interactions will involve your support staff. Theirs are the first faces a client sees when she walks through the door, the first greetings on the phone, and they are sometimes involved in the actual pre-screening process, too. So, it’s crucial that each of your support team members understands the message you want to send to the public and conveys it when dealing with clients, whether in person, on the phone or by email.Read The Rest

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  • 06/22/17--03:00: Dealing With an Upset Client
  • It’s almost a certainty that, at some point, every lawyer will have an unhappy client. In his seminal research on loyalty, business strategist Frederick Reichheld concluded that simply satisfying clients is not enough to retain them. Research showed that depending on the industry, between 65 and 85 percent of customers or clients who defected said they were satisfied or very satisfied with the company they abandoned. They left because they didn’t like the experience.Read The Rest

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    There are particular personality traits that make us good lawyers. For example, most lawyers are professional pessimists, able to spot the possible catastrophes in a transaction and anticipate a wide range of problems in any scenario. Most of us are also efficient, intense and results-oriented. And we learn to regulate our emotions to be effective. Sounds great, right? Maybe. But while these traits make you a good lawyer, they do not make for a happy life. What to do? Here are a certified life coach's top five strategies.Read The Rest

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    Athletes often discuss the fact that each time they advance to the next level the game “speeds up.” The leap from high school to college ball is a significant one. Players are bigger, faster and stronger, and the game moves at a more rapid pace. College to pro is even more drastic, as things move at dizzying speeds. You’ve just turned pro. While there were smart, insightful people in your law school class, you're now participating on a professional playing field at an entirely different level.Read The Rest

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