Discovery of Law Firm: Profitability and Growth
"Don't wait until everything is just right. It will never be perfect. There will always be challenges, obstacles, and less than perfect conditions. So what? Get started now. With each step you take, you will grow stronger, more skilled, more self-confident, and more successful." Mark Victor Hansen
Few of the parameters to measure your law firm or small practice success:
I. Are you tracking your Law Firm’s budget?
No matter how difficult you find it but to run a firm smoothly, it’s important to track your spending and manage your expanses accordingly. Attorneys should track their budget monthly and if possible, create a brief report to understand how things are moving and what all necessary actions/measures are required to streamline the process.
II. How you manage your Law Firm’s cash flow?
To make your day and night easy, owner/attorney should use their sixth sense like the“Spidey” and regularly forecast the cash flow coming to the firm. As it is rightly said – ‘If you do not know the sources of your future income, it will be difficult for you to run your present.’
III. Are you still waiting to get paid?
Your law firm has good number of client’s walk-in, your firm’s receptionist and associates are busy speaking with clients and you feel like real busy day and night. However, each month the only thing you see on the firm’s balance sheet is ‘DEBIT’. This is not a good sign and you really need a caretaker – A good collection system, because as much as you or your staffs put in your hard work, getting paid back is important and to keep the moral high.
VI. Why you have formed your Law Firm?
You chose to become a lawyer because you wanted to help people and provide justice to the innocents. As a Partner or an Owner of the firm, you are not going to divert your and the staff’s mind on the core activities – CRM, New Business, Training and Empowering associates/paralegals to take on more challenging tasks (Read – IS CLIENT RETENTION A REAL DILEMMA?). A proper understanding is required regarding whom to delegate what. It allows you to take an important decision to list down the productive and non-productive tasks which are performed in your firm. If there is anything which can be managed by an outsourced partner, then you should look for best possible opportunity to hire one.
V. Why should you look for options to improve your working style?
Things have changed from "desktop to palmtop, basic phone to smart phones, human efforts to the use of internet and different software, local media to social media (Read – ATTORNEYS: TAKE YOUR TIME BUT SAY ‘YES’ TO SOCIAL MEDIA), physical office to virtual office and many more." Each and every attorney has to keep them updated about the current happenings and rule of laws, not only with the ‘CLE’ credits but with the new software and technologies. Now with Case Management software, Research, Data mining and Social media tools, they can fasten their working and save their time, money and help them use their efforts in more productive tasks – "What they do best – Fight for their clients and help them getting justice."
VI. Do you Trust yourself?
"Trust yourself. Create the kind of self that you will be happy to live with all your life. Make the most of yourself by fanning the tiny, inner sparks of possibility into flames of achievement." Golda Meir