In today’s complex business environment, the legal profession continues to experience industry consolidations, increasingly sophisticated client demands, and talent shortages. The successful law firms are finding the best way to prepare for the future is to look inside at their talent. By looking inside and discovering their emerging leaders, leveraging and enhancing skills and competencies, firms create a motivated and energized force. This unique culture will attract and retain new talent and clients.
Tune up your law firm with four key strategies:
Step 1 – Tune Up Your Seats: Now is the time to ask yourself if you have the right people in the right places. Lead your firm—make tough decisions and transition people who no longer have a place in the future of your firm. Low performers, culture misfits, and those who have outgrown their positions or your firm all affect morale and your bottom line.
Step 2 – Tune Up Your Hiring: If you need to hire, make sure it’s the right fit. Top candidates are in high demand, and they know it. Create the right first impression with a smooth and timely interview experience. Identify the major responsibilities and expectations for the position, both short- and long-term. Assign a key stakeholder in the position to champion the recruiting process—to weed out candidates who are not a firm fit and shepherd those who are. Remember to integrate your new hire, no matter how experienced.
Step 3 – Tune Up Your Leveraging: Don’t add stress during lean times by asking your people to perform the work of several others. Serve your people, and your clients, well—or risk losing them. Utilize attorney and paralegal project staffing to manage overflow work and extra projects. Whether you need a seasoned attorney or a mid- to entry-level professional, project consultants add value to your team in skill, experience and energy. This is cost effective for the firm as it is seamless to clients and often generates revenue.
Step 4 – Tune Up Your People: Provide your attorneys and staff with opportunities to learn and grow, and it will pay dividends both for them and for the organization. Now is the time to implement a comprehensive training program to ensure attorneys, paralegals and staff enhance not only their legal skills, but their interpersonal skills as well. Your organization will be stronger and more versatile in meeting client needs, succession planning, and attracting and retaining top talent and strong clients.
How do you remain competitive during these economic times? Make sure you have the right talent in the right places and leverage that talent. Today’s law firms must create supportive work environments that foster employee creativity and innovation. Communicating, supporting, energizing, and training Attorneys and staff will give law firms the competitive edge they need to thrive.