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You know that common New Year's expression, "new year, new me"? Imagine if that didn't have to be just a bunch of motivating self-talk but was actually a well-thought business strategy. As we begin the new year, think about what you can do to improve your career. Often, people will tell you to become more efficient, organize your schedule or take on a challenge to push your boundaries. While these are all great talking points, they are just talking points. To improve and continually grow, you must innovate. Whether you want to personally improve or improve your business, there is a world of innovation happening around you - are you taking full advantage of it?
The future of the legal industry does not include countless libraries of books anymore. Everything is becoming digitalized. This might be an exciting or uncomfortable thought for you - depending on how comfortable you are with your research processes. Some people love and readily embrace technology, while others are intimidated by it. One school of thought is not better than the other. But, if you are not ready for the new direction the legal industry is taking, you might want to ask yourself why. Is it because technology is intimidating or confusing? Often, consumers do not eagerly embrace technology because they doubt their ability to implement it. But remember, you survived law school - you're not intimidated or scared by anything. When you face something you don't understand, you persevere through it because you know it'll be useful later in your career. The same concept goes for technology. It might be difficult for you to adapt at first, but that's where the industry is headed - Do you want to be a lawyer of the future?
What is a lawyer of the future? It's a lawyer that capitalizes on the latest innovations and advancements in the legal industry. It's a lawyer that utilizes artificial intelligence, analytics and data collections to make their lives easier. It's a lawyer that believes in the phrase, "work smarter not harder" because they understand that systems exist to help them get the job done effectively and efficiently.
Technology is becoming a staple in winning law firms because it simplifies the data-mining every lawyer does daily. No one goes to law school because they like research. They go because they enjoy practicing good law and being an integral part of the justice system. If you did go to law school because you like research, I commend you. You picked the right career because every lawyer knows, there is a ton of research! Luckily, there are a ton of innovative technologies too. These technologies are designed to make research quicker and easier, bringing me back to my starting point that innovation is the key to business growth. If you can work faster, easier and with more precision, you can exceed the already high expectations of your clients.
So, as you make your diet plans, renew that gym membership or prepare for any other New Year's resolution you might have - consider this, what is something new you can bring to your career? After all, it is a new year, but is it the same you?
The legal industry is already producing innovative solutions geared towards lawyers of the future. We can't wait to see what 2019 brings.
Want to learn more about the power of technology in small law firms? Check out this whitepaper discussing how technology is helping small law firms level the playing field.
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