Avoid These Mistakes Immediately for Your Law Firm’s Growth: A Comprehensive Guide

February 29, 2024
Today we address five critical mistakes law firm owners often make that hinder their growth and profitability. The inspiration for this episode? Multiple inquiries from numerous law firm owners regarding ways to expand their practice. I’ve seen many fail to implement the necessary changes, which is why we’re having this conversation today. So, let’s unearth the five stumbling blocks on your path to growth.

Stumbling Block One: The first question you need to ask yourself is, “Am I consistent?” 

Picture this – you’re on a diet. One day you’re all about keto. Then the next day, you’re into intermittent fasting. The day after, you’re on the cabbage soup diet. The following day, you try Gwyneth Paltrow’s latest health craze. Sounds familiar? This way of thinking – continuously hopping from one strategy to another – is shockingly common among law firm owners.

Ask yourself: are you consistently sticking to ONE growth strategy? Or are you strategy hopping?

Stumbling Block Two: Are you committed to growth?

Think of Thor from Marvel Comics. Why aren’t many ‘Thors’ walking around? Simply put, to attain such a physique, a rigorous regimen involving daily double workouts and a strict nutritional diet are necessary. No junk food, only lean protein and shakes!

Now, relate this to your law firm. To grow, you require a ‘Thor-like’ commitment. This means dedicated effort without skipping a beat. However, the reality suggests that many law firm owners are not truly committed despite claiming so. Hence, it’s crucial to introspect. Are you genuinely dedicated to your firm’s growth?

Are you analyzing the data in your law firm every month?

Are you tracking where your clients came from 100% of the time? (Not guessing either, but actually knowing the source of the client)

If you’re not doing these things, then you’re not actually committed to growth.

Stumbling Block Three: Setting realistic goals for your law firm

Let’s move on to another important factor: Setting realistic goals. Are your law firm goals feasible? Can they be achieved within the time frame you’ve set? Moreover, consider if you’re cut out to reach those goals. All these can drastically impact your firm’s growth. So, evaluate wisely!

It’s quite common to see law firm owners aim aggressively for a significant financial leap, such as climbing from $300,000 to a whopping $1,000,000. Herein lies the trap of overambitious law firm management programs. I won’t shy away from directly stating the truth – it’s a misleading facade that creates unrealistic goals. Promises of earning clients effortlessly and escalating to a seven-figure income are enticing yet deceptive. They make you believe that they are the panacea to transform your $300,000 into $1,000,000, which is frankly rather implausible. Being brutally honest, such a leap is wildly impractical. If you had a turnover of $300,000 last year, a realistic goal would be somewhere around $400,000 or possibly $500,000. You could consider $600,000 as your stretch goal, but expecting a leap to a million? Dismiss that thought!

Stumbling Block Four: Do you actually have time for growth? (Be honest).

Let’s dive into the fourth point, a common trap which many fall into – pursuing growth without considering if it’s the right time. Just because growth seems universally beneficial, it doesn’t always apply to everyone. For instance, if you’ve recently got married and expecting a child soon, it might not be the best time for you to seek growth.

Why is that? Simply because you have commitments that require your time and energy. Anticipating the arrival of a child will undoubtedly turn your world upside down. It will affect your sleep, mood, and might even compel you to take on unsuitable clients due to desperation. You may find yourself stepping into the high volume, low quality client game. But trust me, it’s a game with no winners. Before taking any step, ask yourself if you have the time and energy for growth- related activities. If the answer is no, you are already occupied, which is perfectly fine. However, it would not be fair to expect growth and blame your strategy or consultancy if you can’t devote time to it.

Growth activities require consistent commitment – typically 3 to 4 hours per week over a minimum period of six months. If you don’t have that time, or are not honest about your availability, it just isn’t the right time. Wait until you can afford to spare the time. While many might argue that time isn’t the issue, the strategic response is to only venture into growth when you have allocated blocks of time in your schedule.

You need not focus on growth if now is not the right time. Concentrate on fulfilling the responsibilities at hand and when your calendar permits, then you can dedicate those 3 to 4 hours weekly to execute your growth plan.

Stumbling Block Five: Are you doing piddily little things?

Let’s dive into the 5th point. I want you to self-reflect on the question, “Am I engaging in trivial tasks?” Sometimes, you see law firm owners fussing over small-time activities like updating their LinkedIn taglines or uploading new photos. While these things are good to do, they only scratch the surface of what needs to be done to make real progress.

You have much more work ahead. Many law firm owners tick off three tasks and feel accomplished, but the truth is they have hundreds more to complete for substantial growth. Law firm development isn’t about these small activities; it’s the bigger picture that matters. Let me illustrate this with an analogy: If you save a dollar every day for the next ten years, you wouldn’t stack up $100,000. It takes way more effort and investment to reach that goal. The same applies to your practice – setting high goals and performing minimal tasks won’t get you there. If you wonder why your law firm isn’t growing, it’s because of these trivial tasks.

While these small activities are acceptable, they won’t yield the results you’re aiming for. So, ask yourself, “Am I focusing too much on trivial tasks?”

If you’re ready to focus on the right tasks to grow your law firm, and do it consistently and be committed, while having someone like me on your side laying out the roadmap and the steps to get there, then take a moment to submit the form below.