This is Day One of New Solo Week here at Divorce Discourse. Iâ€™m focusing on attorneys that have, over the course of the past year, started a family law practice. Some are straight out of school, some have left larger firms and some have left other jobs. Iâ€™ve been thinking about you and Iâ€™m talking to you this week. Iâ€™d appreciate your thoughts and feedback in the comments below. And away we go….
Iâ€™m talking to this lawyer the other day. Sheâ€™s been in solo practice for five months. Sheâ€™s “SOOOOO busy” – thatâ€™s what she tells me.
“SOOOOOO busy” gets my attention so I actually decide to start listening. I really tune in to the conversation at that point and am baffled as to how someone who just started her practice can possibly be that busy. It takes time to build a practice and she hasnâ€™t had time. Has she figured out some magical technique for practice development that I somehow missed?
As I listen carefully and probe a bit, it becomes clear that sheâ€™s staying really busy helping people with no money do something that really doesnâ€™t require a lawyer. Sheâ€™s barely getting paid and sheâ€™s getting calls like crazy from other penniless people wanting help with this same pseudo-legal problem. Sheâ€™s taking them all on and doing their work for practically nothing.
So really sheâ€™s “SOOOOO busy” doing nothing much that matters to her bottom line. In fact, sheâ€™s “SOOOOO busy” doing something thatâ€™s actually distracting her from her primary business objective – building a healthy, profitable practice.
Sadly, sheâ€™s not alone. I constantly have the conversation that goes like this -
“Lee, Iâ€™d really like to talk to you about marketing, I want to grow my practice.” “Sure, lets talk about things like referral source meetings, article writing, social media, Iâ€™ve got some great ideas for you.” “No, no, no, I canâ€™t do that stuff – Iâ€™m already SOOOOO busy. I just donâ€™t have the time to do that stuff.”
Please, please, please STFU with the “SOOOOO busy.” If youâ€™re not doing profitable work then just stop doing the stuff youâ€™re doing that isnâ€™t making you money. You need to use your time doing profitable work. If you have left over time then use it for marketing. Donâ€™t get caught up in doing busy work that isnâ€™t worth doing.
If youâ€™re happy with your current income then, by all means, keep doing what youâ€™re doing. If youâ€™re not happy, then youâ€™ve got to stop doing whatever it is thatâ€™s making you so busy that you donâ€™t have time for more profitable work. Then go out and generate the business. Use that new business to replace your less profitable work and maintain some free time to keep marketing and keep elevating the overall level of your practice. Never let yourself get in a position that prevents you from marketing. Youâ€™ve got to keep marketing, marketing, marketing.
Am I right? Wrong? What do you think?