How can lawyers leverage their time?

Most lawyers earn a living by setting their hourly rate and then charging for the number of hours (or fractions thereof) that they work. The biggest challenge for lawyers, particularly solo practitioners, is how to leverage their time. No matter how much a lawyer increases his or her hourly rate, the lawyer can never earn more than the amount of time he or she puts in. For example, if a solo practitioner doesn’t show up for work tomorrow, that lawyer won’t make any money. And Continue reading →

Why you should buy a new PC every year!

[REPUBLISHED FROM 9/29/07 TO ALLOW COMMENTS] The first time I used a computer was in highschool in 1972; it was a teletype terminal connected to a mainframe. It used simple BASIC programming language. I learned to write a simple program that would count from 1 to 10 or generate random numbers, but it was not very useful by today’s standards. In 1973, I purchased the “Bowmar Brain” for about $100, the first inexpensive calculator that was widely distributed; but it was not programmable and, therefore, Continue reading →

Don’t Take Technology for Granted!

As a virtual lawyer, I pride myself on being able to integrate technology into my law practice and to leverage technology in ways that improve the efficiency and quality of legal services. I understand that most lawyers are not as focused on technology as I am. I understand that other lawyers may not send and receive faxes from their PC. I understand that other lawyers may not know how to convert a Word document to a PDF. I understand that they may not send bills Continue reading →

Growing the law practice: doing vs. saying

What has the Virtual Lawyer been doing? I have been so busy “doing”, there has been no time for “saying” what I have been doing. I know that I haven’t been keeping up with my blogging. Far from my initial goal of writing once a day, I have struggled to write once a month. Not for lack of interest, nor for a lack of things to write about. I was just too busy. As a solo practitioner or partner in a small firm, there is Continue reading →

Virtual Lawyer Test #2 – It keeps getting better!

I just returned from two days in NYC. My experience as a “virtual lawyer” keeps getting better. All I brought with me was a cell phone (Motorola RAZR), a laptop (Compaq v2000), and an iPod mini. Despite two days on the road, I felt almost as comfortable working out of the office as I do working in the office. This trip was so much better than previous trips. First, there was less to carry with me. Second, it is easier to find Internet access. Third, Continue reading →

What do clients want, really?

So often in business you hear “listen to your customers”, “be customer-driven,” “focus on the customer’s needs”. Companies spend a lot of money on customer surveys, focus groups and market analysis to really understand their customers. If it applies to every other business, why not the legal profession? Well…it does! But, it is harder to do with legal and other professional services, where you are providing more intangible than tangible work product. What lawyers are selling is the application of knowledge in a personal relationship Continue reading →

Would you marry your business partner?

No, I don’t mean literally. Most people spend years looking for the right person to marry. But, when it comes to business, they spend very little time by comparison looking for the right person. Especially lawyers. In order to build Law Firm 2.0 (the law firm of the future), I need to add lawyers to the firm. They could be partners or associates. I am open to either one. But, I know whomever it is will have a profound impact on the direction and culture Continue reading →

Power of the Internet

The Internet is the world’s first expanding resource. Think about it. Water, air, oil, land, food are all limited despite their being ubiquitous. The pioneers who first came to the US in the 1600’s probably thought those resources were unlimited. However, the more people there are on the planet, the scarcer and more expense those resources become. But the Internet is different. The more people who use it, the more plentiful and powerful it becomes. Is there any other resource like that? Never has access Continue reading →

Building Law Firm 2.0

The current revolution of new applications and uses of the Internet has frequently been termed Web 2.0. In thinking about how this revolution will affect the practice of law, the term “Law Firm 2.0” came to mind. Based on a quick google search, I see that I am not the first to use this term. What is Law Firm 2.0? Law Firm 2.0 is a way to describe the impact that technology and the web will have on the next generation of law firms. In Continue reading →

Testing my virtual strength

On Monday, I had my first real test of virtual strength. I didn’t plan it that way, it just happened. Every year, my son and I go away for a weekend in March to go skiing. There are two kinds of skiing. Winter skiing and Spring skiing. Winter skiing is a test of man against nature. Spring skiing is about man appreciating nature. There’s nothing like floating down a mountain of snow on a warm sunny day. I digress…my son and I were away for Continue reading →