It’s no secret that small firms and solo practitioners can deliver big results. Ask almost any independent lawyer (or any entrepreneur, for that matter) after a few years in business what has made them successful and the responses are often surprising. Of course, it takes a sound legal education, a solid understanding of case law, negotiation skills and good interpersonal communications to launch and grow a practice and deliver positive results for clients.
However, what many independent practitioners learn over time is that it takes a village of other professionals who support the business to make it run efficiently and ultimately improve client service. Recently I had the occasion to participate in the New Jersey State Bar Association (of which I am a Trustee) 2020 Solo and Small Firm Conference. At this year’s event we covered topics like technology, business development and virtual support staff, things that power our firms from behind the scenes, not core legal functions but no less important. In a recent law.com article, I also shared some insights on what a skilled paralegal can do to improve productivity, output and the overall client experience. As small firms or solo practitioners, there are only so many hours in a day and during most of those we need to bring our sharpest legal skills to the table rather than spending them worrying about cybersecurity or our invoices. When done at the right time, and with careful evaluation, finding ways to delegate or outsource these other critical functions can be game-changing for a practice.