For the last three days, I have been attending a great conference called the Lawyer Forward hosted by Michael Whelan in Austin, Texas. The seminar focused on improving legal services, raising fees and creating a better life for your law practice if you are a solo attorney. Mike hosts a podcast called lunch with lawyers. Mike had an excellent point that as lawyers we need to view our role as a teacher to change how the public views us as a profession.
One feature I liked about the seminar was the number of speakers and the short time provided to each speaker. I found this maximized the content by requiring the speaker to be precise and to the point.
Christina Hollwarth a Divorce Lawyer from Texas delivered a great speech about compassion for clients. She stressed that when we have compassion for clients it lowers our stress level and increases the reward we get from the profession. The point that struck me was that she started her talk with a quote from TS Elliot about the world ending not with a bang but a whimper. For our clients, the clang of the handcuffs can make it seem like their world is ending. Christina did a great job helping me to think of the emotion of the clients problem in a new light.
One the featured speakers was John Skiba who creates the JD Blooger podcast. He urged lawyers to find a way to differentiate your law firm. He gave examples of attorney who created a non-profit law firm to fill the needs of those who make too much for legal services but cannot afford a lawyer. The Texas Law Hawk, Brian Wilson who created a viral youtube video making fun of legal advertising which drew national attention. John has a podcast that is well that is worth listening to as he posts episodes twice a week.
There was a speaker who discussed how to create a podcast. He recommended, getting a mic which costs about $ 60.00 to see if the media is for you. I am not sure if podcasting is something I will implement immediately. I find with seminars it is easy to get overwhelmed with ideas so for the next 90 days, I hope to work on the following:
- increasing and improving the quality of Blog posts
- automate common task and question with email responses that can be delayed. I learned about a technology that does this from another lawyer attending the seminar. Once I figure it out I’ll post my thought on the software, which is called Autopilot.
- implement the new technologies relating to Clio.
I found Joshua Lennon from Legal Software company Clio very helpful as I use this software and learned about three new things that I did not realize it can do in talking with him. Clio is a cloud based software that allows you to store all of your client files securely in the cloud so you can work on your cases without the file.
There was a great group of people at the seminar and I learned countless things from talking to each of them.
This is a yearly seminar and will be offered next year. I would recommend anyone make plans to attend and you will pick up a few new things to improve your law practice.
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