Audio: Future Of The Legal Profession (Part 1) – Jordan Furlong

Jordan Furlong recently gave us his two-part 2011 teleseminar update on the future of the legal profession. Part two will be posted on March 22nd.

I always look forward to my conversations with Jordan.  He is insightful, extremely intelligent, and expresses his vision of the future of the legal profession with amazing clarity and direction for all of us.

If you don’t really know who Jordan Furlong is, here’s a little more about him:

Jordan is a partner with Edge International, providing consulting services to law firms on strategic planning and tactical matters.  He is also a Senior Consultant with Stem Legal and principal of its Media Strategy consulting service. Finally, he’s also an award-winning blogger who chronicles the extraordinary changes underway in the practice of law at Law21: Dispatches from a Legal Profession on the Brink.

After graduating from Queen’s University Faculty of Law in 1993, Jordan articled with Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP in 1994 before beginning a career in legal journalism. He spent more than a dozen years leading three top Canadian legal periodicals: he served as Editor-in-Chief of the Canadian Bar Association’s flagship magazine National for a full decade (1999-2009), during which time it earned eight awards for journalistic excellence. He also founded and served as Executive Editor of the Canadian Corporate Counsel Association’s CCCA Magazine (2007-2009), and he held the position of Managing Editor with The Lawyers Weekly newspaper (1997-1998).

Jordan is an Honorary Fellow of the College of Law Practice Management, he served as editor of its 2006 Innovaction e-zine on innovation in law practice, and he currently chairs the College’s InnovAction Awards, which recognize and reward creativity and innovation in legal services delivery. He’s also a regular columnist with Slaw, writing on the future of law practice. He has spoken about the challenges facing the legal profession at numerous conferences, and his written work has been published in a wide variety of periodicals aimed at both lawyers and clients. You can find him on LinkedIn and Twitter, and he lives in Ottawa, Canada, with his wife and two children.

Teleseminar Topics – The Four Top Trends in the Legal Market and How They Affect Solos

  • Why clients remain in control and how you can turn that to  your advantage
  • Where your competition now comes from – outside mainstream legal services and outside the profession altogether – and how you can address these emerging markets
  • The evolution of legal talent – who is in demand, who is not, and why
  • How the BigLaw/SmallLaw dichotomy will become less accurate over time, as a much wider range of providers emerges – a full spectrum of legal talent and business models.
  • How the legal profession’s generational DNA continues to slowly change every day and the role of the Millenial

The interview is approximately 42 minutes long. Listen directly below.

Download (.MP3)

If you enjoy Jordan’s guest lectures, listen to what he had to say last year about the Future of the Legal Profession.

Listen to more guest lectures from Solo Practice University® and get notified when new lectures are published.

All opinions, advice, and experiences of guest bloggers/columnists are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions, practices or experiences of Solo Practice University®.

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3 comments on “Audio: Future Of The Legal Profession (Part 1) – Jordan Furlong

  • Thanks for the interesting talk. The only thing I disagreed with was the non-legal example: both Honda and the dealership where I bought my Prius drive me crazy! Yes, when I bought my Prius, the initial service reviews were supposed to be included if I took it to the dealership. Trouble is that the dealership is so inconvenient that it wasn’t worth my time to go there to take advantage of a partial freebie (because I’d still have to pay for any work that needed to be done). As for oil change, Honda actually sets it up so that a light goes on and leads you to believe that only a dealership can change it. What a pain in the neck. I take my Prius to a gas station near my house that has become an expert on servicing Honda’s because of Honda’s stupid policies.

    If a lawyer is going to charge me a premium to build in the cost of a will check up 3 years down the line, I’d go elsewhere. Who knows where I’ll be living in three years or if I’ll remember to take advantage of the thing. If that is going to be the new business model, I will be looking for the lawyers who, like the gas station near my house, will be willing to step in and do reviews and changes to existing wills without reinventing the wheel.

    • Carolyn,

      We had different experiences. That’s why I really like my dealership (the analogy being …a lawyer). They didn’t build in a premium for this particular extra. We negotiated the car to the price we wanted to pay. The free oil changes weren’t a charge to us built into the cost. In essence, it was a marketing cost highly targeted and more effective because they were leveraging a ‘bird in hand.’ Cheaper to spend $20 on someone who has the potential to refer more business to the dealership based on actual experience than advertising in the newspaper in a shotgun effect. As it relates to a lawyer building in a will check up? Same principle applies. They are reviewing the will for free based upon any changes in your life. They may even agree to one change for free because it’s already in the system and the change and witnessing is no big deal. Built-in leveraging of an existing customer and forces the lawyer to stay in contact with someone who has the potential to bring in more business. We are constantly talking about how to make our services have more value. And since lawyers are getting away from selling time…this is a the same highly focused marketing cost to retain a known client as the dealership offering free oil changes.

      When presented to the client this way, it’s not an inconvenience but a value-ad and smart for both the dealership and the lawyer, in my opinion.

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