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What geeks are great at that Lawyers should learn

The universe likes balance – everyone is great at something, but there’s usually something they are terrible at. Me? I’m bad at Golf*. However, I am pretty good at finding out the best bits from working with one profession and seeing how it might apply to another.

So, here’s my top tips for things the IT firms I’ve worked with do well, that law firms should copy:

  1. Lockup/Invoicing – IT routinely bills for; part payment in advance, or As A Service, on an interim basis, or by project milestone. Worse case is they bill immediately upon completion without waiting for the end of the month. Cash flow kills firms.

  2. Invoice confidence - Lawyers crumple like an empty bag of Wotsits if a client challenges the bill.

  3. Tell clients in advance what will happen, when, during a piece of work. Although sticking to it is sometimes a challenge…

  4. Control the scope of work – IT firms are usually very specific about what’s included and what’s not… scope creep kills profit…

  5. Control pricing across the firm – I’m not suggesting this is the answer, but it’s not uncommon for OCD IT CEOs to laboriously sign off on. Every. Single. Quote.

  6. Rapidly form multi-disciplinary teams around a client – (US law firms do this, UK don’t) part of the ability to do that is proper project management skills

  7. Invest in improving profitability, biz dev & marketing – the average IT firm’s marketing budget would make a what’s left of a partner’s hair turn white…

I should add there are a whole bunch of things that Lawyers do that the IT sector should copy too….

*Actually, it’s not just golf I’m bad at. There are many, many other things; cricket, wearing matching clothes, controlling my temper when politicians talk on the TV…

About Alex

As a commercial coach, Alex helps lawyers to earn better fees, and law firms to improve their profitability.

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