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    Stop the pain

    The third characteristic of successful quality assurance programs in law firms is that they focus on the greatest risks and attack the biggest quality problems. A practical approach is best. The best quality assurance methods do not seek to perfect...

    Improve Your Marketing With Better Eye Contact

    Lately, I've been trying harder to do a better job of looking people in the eye when I talk with them. It seems that they in turn are more attentive and appreciate the effort to focus on them. Bruce Allen over on the Marketing Catalyst blog has...

    In-House Counsel, A Career Coaches View of Knowledge Management: What’s the Connection?

    Continuing our special guest blogger series, this week we tackle another issue front and center on in-house counsel minds, how to create and then manage a successful in-house career. As the global economy continues to show signs of improvement, this is...

    Legal Project Management (Part 7): Training

    All of a sudden, legal project management training is hot. Whether you want a one-hour webinar, a three-day workshop, or anything in between, someone has just the course for you. What a difference six months makes. Last November, Paul Lippe posted...

    Inspiration for the New Year | Bringing great projects to life

    There are two fatal errors that keep great projects from coming to life: Not finishing Not starting -Buddha A DEEP BREATH OF LIFE Early last year I took a yoga class at Florida Keys Community College. While I was far from a good student...

    Over the Cliff: Hourly Billing to Commodity Law?

    Does the road from hourly billing to commodity legal work run straight and true? Or is there a turnout that will help preserve the profitability of (US) law firms... a turnout that firms are unknowingly bypassing? My colleague John Wallbillich (a/k...

    Book review: Winning legal business from medium-sized companies

    Silvia Hodges' Winning Legal Business from Medium-Sized Companies is based on her Ph.D thesis at Nottingham Law School . Most legal marketing books are based on anecdotes and experience. This one is based on the type of systematic research evidence...

    You Can Learn A Lot About Marketing From Your Dog

    You might ask how I could make such a statement when most dogs, including my Chocolate Lab Sugar, spend most of their day sleeping. Normal people wouldn't think that you could learn a lot about developing business from spending 90% of your time viewing...

    Project Leadership and Motivation

    What does science know about motivating employees that businesses too often ignore? That's the topic of an 18-minute talk by (nonpracticing) lawyer Dan Pink . He frames it as an argument to the jury of the audience. In this 2009 talk, he describes...

    An introduction to legal project management (Part 1 of 3)

    This series of posts is a slightly extended version of an article that appeared in the July 2011 issue of Managing Partner magazine . To download a PDF of the published version of my article, click here . In one sense, any lawyer who has ever...

    Required Viewing: Paddy Ashdown on the “Global Power Shift”

    My colleagues at Walker Clark and I frequently stress the critical importance of informed strategic planning. Part of that information should include an in-depth understanding of the major trends that are shaping our changing world. Although global in...

    Law Firm Branding: Hocus Pocus or Results?

    Baker McKenzie beat Skadden in gross revenues in the 2010 AmLaw 200 list taking over the top spot for the first time since 1994. That's a big deal, I guess. Ben Hallman writes in " Behind the Numbers : A Change at the Top", ( The American...

    How Project Management Can Help Your Marketing

    Patrick Lamb has this week a post about project managemen t on his In Search of Perfect Client Service blog. Specifically, he comments on the Legal Project Management Quick Reference Guide written by my colleague Jim Hassett of LegalBizDev . Pat reviewed...

    A Qwest for fair billing arrangements – four arguments against fixed fees

    Richard Baer, general counsel of Qwest Communications, recently made several points against fixed fees. He gave four reasons for his opposition to them in an interview by Corp. Counsel, March 2010 at 18. His points don't persuade me. Baer begins...

    A Radical Future For The Legal Industry?

    Rory Webber, Martindale-Hubbell Connected's Marketing & Community Development Manager interviews legal journalist and MH Connected member, Richard Parnham. In today's difficult economy, many law firms are focusing on how to survive over...

    On Adam Smith Esq. and “Good Enough”

    A recent Adam Smith, Esq. column raises the critical question around "good enough" cost-limited legal work : What happens when something goes wrong? He titles it The Coming Debate Over Defining "Quality." I think it's a debate...

    Legal Project Management (Part 9): Getting Away from Perfectionism

    When Voltaire wrote the phrase "Better is the enemy of good" in the late eighteenth century, he was not thinking about the needs of legal clients. But the phrase is extremely relevant to the challenges lawyers face today as they adapt to what...

    “No Battle Plan Survives Contact With the Enemy”

    First up in Planning Week is German military strategist Helmuth von Moltke. "No battle plan," he sagely noted, "survives contact with the enemy." When your plan meets the real world, the real world wins. Nothing goes as planned...

    How To Improve Your Client Service

    Most law firms would say, if asked, that they provide excellent client service, or at least very good service. Unfortunately, this self-assessment is not based on fact in most cases. As my friend Stacy West Clark reports, when clients were asked how their...

    Getting a Jump on the Ball

    About 30 years ago, I played softball against the cast of Children of a Lesser God . (This is a shaggy-dog story of sorts, though it's true. It does have a point. I'll get there.) It was in the Broadway Show League, a mixed-gender slow-pitch...

    The Steve Jobs of Law?

    Larry Ribstein has a great short post over at Truth on the Market reflecting on the future of law, titled Waiting for the Steve Jobs of Law . He notes, "Law is waiting for its Steve Jobs (or Bill Gates)." Actually, the computer market...

    Should you buy Pat Lamb’s new book on alternative fees?

    In my opinion, any lawyer who wants to understand the nitty gritty details of how non-hourly fees really work, from pricing to project management, should buy Pat Lamb's new book Alternative Fee Arrangements: Value Fees and the Changing Legal Market...

    10 Cheap But Effective Marketing Tips For Today's Realities

    Earlier this year there was an article by Jessica Sharp published in The Legal Intelligencer , and republished this week on Law.com's Small Firm Business . Since the "10 Tips for Lower-Cost Law Firm Marketing" don't get old with age...

    Taking the Right Line to the Ball

    How does an outfielder catch a fly ball? He - or she - runs to the place where the ball will be when it re-approaches the earth. How do successful project managers stay atop their projects? The same way. (I promise I'll lay off the baseball...

    Social Web ‘consumption, familiarity and use’ by in-house lawyers: survey released

    As a marketer I rarely, if ever, try to "convince" a law firm or lawyer that social media and networking is something they MUST do. When I speak to groups of lawyers [or marketers] on the topic, I am careful to craft my speeches in a way that...