Friday, February 16, 2007

Can blogging help grow a law practice?

This year, my New Year's resolution was to start writing a blog and to contribute regularly. Okay, I'm a little late in starting, but I'm finally ready to put my New Year's resolution in place.

The Plan is to use the blog as a motivator for building a law practice. Not just one that makes money, but one that looks forward, leverages technology, and anticipates new trends. If you will, the law firm of the future. That said, I am currently only a solo practitioner. What I know is that I want to grow my business. I don't know whether that means recruiting partners, hiring paralegals or associates, or adding other staff. I don't know whether that means growing the business physically, virtually or a combination of both.

So, how will a blog help grow a law practice? The idea is to write about one thing at the start of each work day that is critical to building the business. I have a vision for building a law practice. One that provides great quality, leverages technology, and emphasizes customer service.

I imagine that this is how IBM started. The founder of IBM, Tom Watson Sr, as quoted in
The E-Myth Revisited, described how IBM built its success:

"IBM is what it is today for three special reasons. The first reason is that, at the very beginning, I had a very clear picture of what the company would look like when it was finally done. You might say I had a model in my mind of what it would look like when the dream - my vision - was in place.

"The second reason was that once I had that picture, I then asked myself how a company which looked like that would have to act. I then created a picture of how IBM would act when it was finally done.

"The third reason IBM has been so successful was that once I had a picture of how IBM would look like when the dream was in place and how such a company would have to act, I then realized that, unless we began to act that way from the very beginning, we would never get there.

"In other words, I realized that for IBM to become a great company it would have to act like a great company long before it ever became one.

"From the very outset, IBM was fashioned after the template of my vision. And each and every day we attempted to model the company after that template. At the end of each day, we asked ourselves how well we did, and discovered the disparity between where we were and where we had committed ourselves to be, and, at the start of the following day, set out to make up for the difference.

"Every day at IBM was a day devoted to business development, not doing business. We didn’t do business at IBM, we built one."

Back to my New Year's resolution.... The promise that I made is that every day I would write about one new thing that would help build a law practice. I plan to focus on five separate areas: legal services (product quality and packaging), business development (marketing and sales), office management (technology, systems, knowledge management), recruiting (virtual and real team building), and finance (billing rates, pricing models, cash flow).

My hope is that by writing this blog everyday I will move my business forward and inspire others to do the same. I also want to encourage others to share their thoughts on growing a law practice, either by posting comments on this blog or by sending email to me directly at


david harlow said...

Roger --

Welcome to the blogosphere. As you know, I am engaged in a similar ongoing experiment at HealthBlawg. Best of luck.

-- David

D. Todd Smith said...

For me, your timing couldn't be better. I am making plans to leave my "brick and mortar" office behind and work primarily from my home. I have subscribed to your feed and look forward to reading more.

D. Todd Smith

Anonymous said...

I look forward to following the progress, through the blog and otherwise. Best of luck!

-Henry G.