Practice Tip of the Week: Don't Be an Island
There is very little doubt that to be a lawyer, an individual must be smart and capable. But just because an attorney is both, it doesn't mean that they should be doing everything alone, even if they're a solo. As Judge Lynne Stewart explained to the ABA: "Don't be an island, utilize your resources."
Sure, lawyering can often be a rather solitary profession requiring hours upon hours of reading, writing, researching, and thinking. However, many attorneys are often a little too confident in their abilities to do everything on their own, or just don't know where to turn for reliable support. Below, you'll find three tips on how to not be an island.
Regardless of where you are in your practice, finding a mentor, or mentee, can be one of the most impactful things you do. A new solo can learn quite a bit from a more experienced one, and the relationship can benefit both lawyers, professionally and personally. Solo practice is often marred by feelings of loneliness, and having a mentor/mentee relationship allows for both lawyers to not feel so alone in their individual practices.
If you have an office assistant, even if they are not a paralegal or law clerk, you can still find tasks to delegate to them. And if you do have a law clerk or paralegal, you probably should be delegating as much as you possibly can to them. Just be smart and make sure you monitor the work and that the person you're delegating to has been trained to do the task.
If you don't have an assistant, you may want to consider getting some part-time support at first, with an eye toward leveraging the new-found time from the new support person to generate more revenue.
3. Technology to the Rescue
Thanks to all the big steps forward in legal and non-legal tech, certain aspects of both law practice and business management can be automated. If you find that you are lost amongst all the new tech, it may be worthwhile to hire a consultant to help you get it all set up. The time savings alone should help to justify the cost.
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