Recognize that change is constant. Sometimes change occurs gradually and at other times, for instance during a global pandemic, it comes at us like a tsunami. Regardless, in order to responsibly adapt to change, it must not only be recognized, the consequences thereof must also be understood. If change is too quickly normalized, the consequences too easily become minimized if not completely ignored.
Over the years I have visited more solo firms that I can remember, but no visit stands out more than the one that made me feel as if I had walked on to the set of Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Read more….
This article will improve your odds of hiring the right person at the right time for the right seat – and developing them into a rock star team member. Smart hiring will reduce: ibuprofen purchases, “why me” crying episodes, the rapid outflow of cash better spent on pepperoni rolls in Pittsburgh’s Strip or the Reading Terminal, and wasted time that could be spent watching the 1978 Steeler season with your bubble mates.
Allow yourself a little grace for past mistakes and let’s map out the steps to make good things happen from here on out.
An insured recently called wanting to discuss third party payors because representation of his client had just ended and he didn’t know what to do with the excess funds that remained in trust. In light of that call, I thought it worthwhile to cover the basics. Afterall, when one person is asking, that implies others have questions as well.
Many solo attorneys join professional membership organizations and formal networking groups in order to attract business through referrals by fellow members. Maintaining contact with members of the group via Zoom meetings is valuable, yet there are many other ways to interact with these colleagues on a one-on-one basis between meetings. Read and learn.
I recently took two calls almost back to back, and was surprised by both conversations. One came from an attorney who was retiring in another month or so. He had a few general malpractice insurance questions. The second was from an associate attorney with a small firm that was about to be dissolved. This associate was quite concerned about some decisions the partners were making regarding the firm’s malpractice coverage. What struck me was, other than the associate who called, the attorney decisionmaker’s at both firms didn’t seem to understand what a tail and/or prior acts coverage are. How much do you really know?
In a number of jurisdictions, the commentary to Rule of Professional Conduct 1.1 Competency states that lawyers are to keep abreast of the benefits and risks associated with relevant technology. Keeping this language in mind, allow me to ask if you actually take this language to heart? I ask because in my world while I often find that lawyers do a pretty good job of evaluating the benefits of any technology they are considering using in their practices, it’s evaluating the risks that seems to get the short shrift in the decision-making process. Afterall, taking time to investigate any potential downsides to whatever the next must have digital tech tool is can be such a killjoy.
The best risk management advice I will ever have to offer is simply this. Don’t ever forget to take care of yourself. I know it sounds simple; but for so many, it isn’t easy. I really do believe that taking this advice to heart can not only make a world of difference in every lawyer’s personal and profession life, it can also be an effective risk management tool.
Lawyers occasionally reach out to me wanting clarification on what needs to be covered in a letter notifying active clients, whose matters the lawyer will be unable to complete in time, that their lawyer is closing his or her practice. Find out what you need to do.