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LawBiz® TIPS – Week of September 20, 2011

LawBiz(r) newsletter

Do lawyers prefer online education? Will they go to annual conferences and "live performances" for their education and networking? Our national road tour, Road to Revenue, proved to me that lawyers will make the trek.

There are advantages that only face-to-face interaction can achieve. But, at the same time, there has to be perceived value for lawyers to make the trek. At the same time, online learning is growing by leaps and bounds. Why? Because there are many more lawyers than ever, and learning styles well as the economics of each method of learning.

In other words, there is no one way...we who enjoy communicating with our brethren must offer more than one style of learning in order to reach a larger audience.

Ed signature

What is a Successful Lawyer?

Develop the Right Perspective
Successful lawyers tend to work long hours and are focused and passionate about what they do. But in the effort to excel, made more intense by the pressure of economics, trying too much to succeed can cause problems for lawyers. Those who don't have the right perspective can see their striving for success become counterproductive.

Our Success Motivation
Success is not just a matter of hard work - the thought of 2,000 or more billable hours a year proves that. But the billable hour is only a method of accounting; it is not the reason for working long hours. Our success motivation comes from loving what we do, from wanting to help people and from needing to take care of our families and ourselves.

A Checklist for Success
So, in this context, what is a successful lawyer? The answer lies, not in earning more money or racking up more billable hours, but in moving your professional life down as many of these paths as possible.

  • Do what you love. Passionate, satisfied attorneys perform better, feel better about their careers and themselves. Attorneys who are not happy need to refocus.

  • Put the client first, by treating every client like your only client. Grateful and appreciative clients will always be there for a committed lawyer.

  • Think like an owner. Everything that occurs in the firm's day-to-day operation important and a focus on increasing revenues and profits is a sure recipe for personal success.

  • Be a problem-solver. Instead of just reacting or being busy with immediate concerns, look ahead for solutions to future problems.

  • Never stop learning. That means going beyond the minimum CLE requirements and continuing to learn new trends and update old thinking.

  • Develop business competency so you can speak the language of your business clients. Presenting advice in this language builds the client's trust and confidence.

  • Treat colleagues as clients and integrate your practice with others in the firm to benefit from the variety of relationships that they have with the outside world.

  • Make yourself invaluable to clients. If you go the extra mile, providing the service they need and anticipating their problems, you will always compete successfully for their business.

Treat Everyone With Respect
A final thought is implicit in traveling each path. Treat everyone - clients, colleagues and contacts alike - with the same civility and respect you wish to receive. The truly successful person never has to worry about the comments made by others when out of earshot.

Attorney & Law Firm Guide to The Business of Law®

Attorney and Law Firm Guide to The Business of Law

Planning and Operating for Survival and Growth, Second Edition

"The Business of Law (2nd. ed., 2003) might be the most practical and informative book I have read in 10 years, honestly."
- Attorney, Dallas, TX

"Your Guide to Biz of Law Book is like a Bible for my practice."
- G. Gordillo
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In this issue:

What is a Successful Lawyer?

Attorney & Law Firm Guide to The Business of Law®

Video: The Key to Success

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Ed Poll on YouTube video


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What Clients Are Saying:

"Through Ed's invaluable coaching and no-nonsense approach, I was able to not only stay employed at the firm, but to make partner and have a future with the firm."

Los Angeles, CA

"Ed knew the right questions to make me answer. He has taught me virtually everything I know about formation, planning, and now management of a successful law firm."

Los Angeles, CA

"Ed Poll recently assisted me in valuing and restructuring my law practice....Ed is fair, kind and forthright, is very professional and was a very enjoyable person with whom to work. I would highly recommend the services of Ed Poll to anyone in need of assistance with understanding their business, improving its operations or valuing it for sale or transition to some other operational format."

DMG, R.N., J.D.
Austin, TX

Ed Poll, LawBiz® Management   |   |   |
©2011 LawBiz® Management. All rights reserved.

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