What your solo law practice can learn from In-N-Out Burger

 

in n out burgerIn-N-Out Burger is a staple in California – they are wildly successful and have a loyal fan base. So what can your solo law practice learn from California’s favorite burger place?

There is always someone to greet you.

When you pull up to the drive thru, there is a person waiting to take your order. If you have a solo law practice, it may be hard to be available anytime a client calls. However, with technology such as voicemail, email, and contact forms through your website, you won’t miss a call from a client. Answer phone calls and emails right away so your client knows you are responsive and care about them. You can even use a digital assistant to be your receptionist. For more information about digital receptionists read our post, Low Cost Alternatives to a Law Firm Receptionist.

The menu is simple.

In-N-Out serves burgers, fries, and milkshakes. You don’t go there for a chicken sandwich or a salad. They concentrate their business on a few items that they do really well. With your solo law practice, you should focus on core services and become the expert on those. For example, if you are an estate planning attorney develop an efficient system for handling probate, don’t branch off to handle divorces. Become the one to go to in your field. Don’t try to be everything to everyone, you will not succeed.

They confirm your order.

When you order through the drive thru, the order taker confirms your order then when you pay, the cashier confirms your order. Few mistakes are made with their system.  When you are working with your clients, confirm your conversations with a follow up letter or email. Make sure they understand what next steps they should take or what to expect. If you are a business lawyer, remind your clients when franchise tax fees are due. If you are an estate planner and drafted a trust for your clients, follow up to see if they have funded their trust.

They focus on what is important.

Generally, all the In-N-Out burger restaurants are done in the same simple style. They don’t invest in sophisticated decor. People are going to their restaurant for the food, not aesthetics. People looking for a lawyer want to know, trust and like you. They are less interested in the trappings of a fancy office but how an attorney can solve their problem. Some over the top offices may instead leave them wondering how much they are going to be charged to keep you in such style. Keep your solo law practice lean and invest in technology not expensive artwork or a fancy address.

They build a following.

In-N-Out has a menu and they have a not-so-secret menu. There are die hard fans whose first stop from LAX is the In-N-Out drive thru on Sepulveda. By doing great work for your clients, being accessible to them, and keeping in touch, you can build a following for your solo law practice. You will keep them coming back and also referring your services to others. Read our post How to Get Your Legal Clients to Love You.

They keep at it.

In-N-Out has been going since 1948. By focusing on their core business, they steadily have built it into an empire.  Rome was not built in a day and your solo law practice is no different. Put in the work and over time you will build your practice.

Want more tips and advice for your awesome law practice? Check out Law Office on a Laptop, Second Edition: How to Set Up Your Own Successful Law Mobile Law Practice.

5 Law Practice Quick Fixes for Your Unbearable Practice

 

law practice unbearableIs your law practice becoming unbearable? Here are 5 common problems facing lawyers and quick fixes to solve them.

Problem #1

You feel out of your depth on a matter

All lawyers, from time to time, suffer from imposter syndrome. However it is quite different if you have taken on a new case or entering a new area of practice. Quick fix: Reach out to another more experienced lawyer for help. While it is uncomfortable to ask for help, many lawyers are more than happy to assist you. Read more

5 Business New Years Resolutions to Jump Start Your 2018

 

Make 2018 Your Best Year Ever!

Now that the holiday season has ended, it is time to set course for a successful new year for your business. While personal new years resolutions are hard to keep, these business new years resolutions can help expand your business and make this your best year ever.

5 Business New Years Resolutions

1. Start the year with gratitude

Consider the people who have helped your business in the past year, namely your clients, mentors and referral sources. Reach out to them to thank them and reinforce your relationship for the new year.

  • Clients – Thank clients for their business and tell them your goals and plans for the new year.  Ask them for referrals. Prompt them to contact you if there is anything you can do for them. Read our article, Do You Show Your Client Appreciation?
  • Mentor(s) – Thank your mentor(s) for their past wisdom and assistance with the success of your business. A quick email or phone call can easily convey your gratitude. It may be a good time to also outline your ideas for the new year to get their feedback.
  • Referral Sources – Send a short note to your referral sources thanking them for their past support and also mention what types of clients you are looking for in the new year. Perhaps you are expanding your business or practice in a new area? Tell them how you can further serve their referrals. For tips, read our post, How to Thank Referral Sources.

Read more

5 unique ways to maintain client connection over the holidays

 

As the holidays approach and life gets busier for your clients, they might not be calling you. It is still important to maintain client connection over the holiday season.

5 unique ways to connect with your clients over the holidays:

Send Holiday Greetings

A simple card thanking your clients and wishing them a happy holidays will keep you in their minds. If you have the time, a handwritten card is best, at least signing it by hand.

Under a time crunch? Email holiday greetings to your clients with your thanks and best wishes.

Want to do something unique and memorable? Add your personal touch by sharing your family traditions around the holiday, share a holiday recipe or touching story about the season. Read more

Secrets of Solo Success – Interview with Aiden Kramer, Esq.

Aiden Kramer
Aiden Kramer Esq. & Rocky

If you haven’t heard of business attorney Aiden Kramer yet, you will.

She is based in Denver, Colorado but serves clients throughout the state (and those outside the state on federal matters) with her virtual law practice.

And she is a YouTube sensation with her “All Up in Yo’ Business” videos where she breaks down complicated legal issues that everyone can understand.

For a sample, check out this video about entity organization that she makes both educational and entertaining:

 

 

In our interview, Aiden shares what she has learned from starting her own practice and how video helps educate and attract potential clients.

Q. Why did you make the leap to start your own law firm?

I always knew I would go solo at some point in my career, but I certainly never expected it to happen right out of law school. I was interning with a local attorney during my 3L year and towards the end of the year my boss made various statements here and there about wanting to hire me after I passed the bar exam. Well, the bar exam came and went, I was sworn in and licensed, and it turned out that my boss just didn’t have enough work to justify hiring me. I had somewhat relied on that and hadn’t applied for many other positions and had no other prospects, so I figured what better time than now to take the plunge and try to go it alone. Read more