The hard way ends hard, you know. Have you ever considered adopting a knowledge strategy approach to help you and your firm more easily produce great results, cost effectively (meaning competitively!) in a shorter period of time?
Let’s say your firm has not taken time to organize its institutional learning in ways its lawyers can easily access. Or, there is not much of a formal system or training program. Your more junior associates, who might be working on a type of project for the first time, have no other choice but to take their best shot at what you and the client need, which you, as the lawyer responsible, find unsatisfactory.
Now imagine how much better off everyone would be if the firm’s knowledge management system made it possible for a more junior/lower-cost lawyer to produce work equivalent to that of a more senior lawyer. The firm’s fees would be lower, making it more competitive. The more senior lawyers would have more time to develop business and focus their attention where it really counts, increasing the firm’s overall revenues and individual career satisfaction. Profits would be higher, too, because the firm wouldn’t have to hire additional junior lawyers or wait as long for them to become profitable. And, a robust knowledge strategy is the confident response to clients’ concerns that more junior lawyers don’t have enough experience to justify their billing rate.
Keep in mind that knowledge strategy is not about technology. It’s about culture. Culture is the one-word descriptor for “how we will do it.” Importantly, and distinct from a mere information management system, the firm’s leadership designs the system with the desired result – lawyers working more effectively – in mind and supports the adoption and use of the system through training and setting clear expectations.
Actually changing the ways in which lawyers work is simple but not easy. The very reason that lawyers are attracted to law is because they possess a unique set of personality traits, which include skepticism, autonomy, reluctance to change, and low sociability. Therein lies the challenge! Be on the lookout for a post on successfully managing change.
To learn more about how knowledge strategy can improve your client service and the economics of your practice regardless of a firm size, please join the upcoming FREE 30-minute webinar,How to Compete with IBM Watson JD: Future-proof your practice by improving efficiency now – Part 1, to be broadcast on January 28, 2016 at 12:00 Noon, Eastern time. The webinar is sponsored by the American Bar Association’s Law Practice Division.