*Written for Small Business Attorney NYC.*
Why business attorneys need to think like entrepreneurs
It is increasingly acknowledged that business attorneys can no longer only rely on their legal expertise for success and survival in the industry. In fact, many argue that attorneys need to take inspiration from entrepreneurs. Law is perceived as being impervious to change or novelty. Therefore, the notion proposed above may seem incongruous. Yet, the emergence of deviants such as Legal Zoom which offers online legal services for lower fees prove that law can and does adapt to its environment.
Due to the financial crises, the legal professions suffer from the same kind of ill affecting other crafts: qualified job seekers exceeding the number of jobs on offer. Consequently, text-book knowledge is not sufficient anymore to keep business attorneys afloat. Besides, the evolution of digital technologies signifies that the competition is higher than ever as people don’t need to have an office or live in the same country anymore to give legal counsel. So, what can you do if you want to become one of the best small business attorneys in New York? The truth is, to run his business, an attorney will have to think like one or else risk having to close shop.
For any business regardless of the sector, taking risk requires a huge leap of faith. However, as lawyer turned entrepreneur Jonathan Field succinctly explains, for law practitioners who are accustomed to certainty this is akin to asking them to jump over a bridge in water swirling with sharks. Former attorney, Harrison Barnes, even admits that meeting between attorneys and businesspeople can be extremely humorous and often ends with the attorney having a sinking feeling that the person in front of him lacks sanity.
Due to our rapidly evolving society, demands are becoming increasingly more complex. As a result, in order to thrive, attorneys need to take inspiration from companies’ ability to alter their business model if or when they realize that it is not adapted to their environment anymore. Of course, this signifies getting over their phobia of risks. Another advantage attorneys would gain if they succeeded in embracing a more open-minded approach is that they would be able to identify opportunities and grasp them with both hands.
Outside of their legal expertise, attorneys tend to know very little about anything else and are usually happy to wallow in their ignorance. Financial literacy is a skill that is often shunned by law practitioners which would actually help them to enhance their profile. Clients want a trusted representative who understands their business’ needs and provide legal advices on this basis. By having a sound knowledge of financial terms, you wouldn’t just be yet another attorney. You would be THE legal advisor your clients recommend to their friends’ friends. This is a valuable strength, especially when working with small businesses which may not have developed sufficient internal expertise in regards to financial matters.
Alongside developing financial literacy, attorneys would greatly benefit from strengthening their customer relation management. Attorneys need to cultivate their relationship with their clients. This may be done by emailing or phoning them every other month to find out how they are doing. Also, you should constantly seek ways to discover what new services you could add to your arsenal by assessing clients’ feedback or carrying out a market research.
Speaking of market, lawyers and attorneys often consider marketing to be beneath them. Even worse, they usually understand very little of how marketing works or how to properly advertise their services. It is not surprising that Facebook is crammed with attorney pages in need of a serious makeover. However, with the growing number of qualified attorney, being able to stand out from the crowd is a necessity. In order to advertise your profile, you may draw up a communications and marketing plan or if you have available fund, you could hire the services of a marketing agency specialised in law.
Times are tough in the legal sector. However, trials and setbacks can be overcome if attorneys have a positive attitude and take the right approach. Throughout this article, how you can develop a business-oriented mindset has been explained to you. Now, it’s time to get to work and grow your venture!