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The Law Practice Doctor - Podcast

The law practice doctor podcast is the place to get the easiest most practical and profitable ways to grow your firm and still have a Life! Its mission is to help solo and small law firms succeed.
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The Law Practice Doctor - Podcast
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Now displaying: August, 2015
Aug 24, 2015

In this week’s episode of The Law Practice Doctor, Sam Gaylord interviews Josh Brown, who is a practicing franchise attorney throughout Indiana. Before becoming a lawyer, Josh was in business management, sales, marketing, and operations. He has since built his law practice around entrepreneurs and building businesses that grow. During the show, Sam and Josh discuss niching down, content marketing, hearing it from your audience, and online versus offline referrals.

 

Main Questions Asked:

  • Talk about the success you’ve had as a result of having ‘niched down.’
  • Tell us about how your marketing experience influenced your content.
  • Talk about ‘hearing it from your audience.’

 

Key Lessons Learned:

Choosing a Niche

  • 85% of Josh’s business is franchise clients, and 15% is with growth entrepreneurs.
  • When you start diving into an area of law, it doesn’t take that long to feel comfortable in specializing in that particular the area.
  • The real level of comfort in working within a niche comes after having the opportunity to work with just a few clients.
  • Just because you choose a niche, doesn’t mean that is the only type of client you can take. It simply means that is the niche you’ve chosen from a marketing perspective.
  • If clients reach out to you but aren’t in the target niche, then the decision is yours if you want to take it or not.
  • Many people fear niching down, as they feel as though they are turning away other clients.
  • The reality in niching downis that you are attracting more of the people that you want to serve.
  • As you start niching down, people will give you clues to awaken you to other things that will make you better.

 

Content Marketing

  • Content marketing is posting helpful information on a consistent basis.
  • Once you know what your niche practice is, it is much easier to get attention online.
  • Josh wanted to take advantage of content marketing and asked himself, ”How can I position myself to show up where I want to show up?”
  • The information in content marketing needs to actually answer people’s questions.
  • As long as you put out good, organic content, you will be rewarded, and you will be ranked high for being a respectable voice in your area.

 

Josh’s Online Success

  • The combination of having a niche, a blog, and a podcast is what drives Josh’s online success.
  • The best thing is if you can come from it as your own authentic voice.
  • Josh ensures a new blog post is released daily on a franchise or franchise-related topic.
  • Josh’s virtual assistant pushes his content out via HootSuite, which is an automated system.
  • Once you have a lot of content, it’s important to keep a social media calendar of what is going out when.
  • Not all content has to be yours; content curation is a great way to share too.
  • Avoid the minutiae, do the things that are driving the $500 an hour ideas, and not the $5 an hour ideas.

 

Hearing it from Your Audience

  • The legal business isn’t always a recurring revenue model, which puts people in the mindset of chasing.
  • The best source of new clients come from the people you’ve already worked with.
  • Clients will tell you what is working, what isn’t, and where you need to improve.

 

Online Vs. Offline

  • Don't put all your eggs in the online basket.
  • Getting out and meeting people offline is important too.
  • People want to work with attorneys who are local. It’s much easier to work within your own immediate local network than it is to go online.
  • Putting yourself ‘out here’ takes time both online and offline. Both have success.
  • You have to have a marketing thought process, as well as an endpoint in the game.
  • Ask yourself, ‘How do I get there, and what is the easiest path?’ Then reverse engineer it.

 

Online Referrals

  • People who reach out and haven’t been referred are more of a’ long tail proposition.’
  • Josh has decided to make online products that are more educational, so people can decide whether or not they want to use his services.
  • The online world is very different in the onboarding process and ultimately getting a client.

 

Thank you for listening! If you enjoyed this podcast, please subscribe and leave a 5 star rating and review in iTunes!

 

Links to Resources Mentioned

Indy Franchise Law

Franchise Euphoria Podcast

Josh@indyfranchiselaw.com

 

Aug 17, 2015

In this week’s episode of The Law Practice Doctor, Sam Gaylord interviews John Fisher, who is a medical malpractice lawyer in New York State. John is an entrepreneur who has an insight into running a solo law firm and in 2013 won the National Marketer of the Year award as presented by Great Legal Marketing. John is the author of several books including The Power of the System and How to Get Your Law Firm’s Website on the First Page of Google. During the show, Sam and John discuss the basic elements of marketing, the importance of outsourcing, writing a book, and how producing a hardcopy newsletter can change your business. 

 

Main Questions Asked:

  • Tell us about The Power of the System and how it can be used.
  • What do you say to the attorney who thinks they are too busy to write a book?
  • What is the thought process behind sending out a hardcopy newsletter?
  • How are you putting the newsletter together?
  • What are your top resource recommendations?

 

Key Lessons Learned:

  • Attorneys view work as ‘technicians’ and that if lawyers are good, everything will fall into place but it doesn’t work that way.
  • The wealthiest lawyers aren’t necessarily the best but rather the ones that understand law is a business.

 

Marketing

  • The best cases are via lawyer referrals as they are prescreened for merit.
  • Lawyer-to-lawyer and word-of-mouth marketing is golden yet the most neglected part of marketing in the law.
  • Most attorneys are willing to capture new clients that cost 3-5 times as much than providing value to their current clients.
  • Learn marketing and start implementing one small thing at a time, which could be a newsletter or speaking at an event.
  • Nobody is going to recognize you as an authority or celebrity in your market. You have to go out there and take it.

 

The Basic Elements Of Marketing

1. Specialize: If you’re not an expert, then you’re a commodity. If you’re a commodity, then people won’t hire you unless you’re the lowest cost.

2. Marketing: The people that do the best allocated 50% of their time to marketing.

3. Outsourcing: Companies such as Call Ruby and Legal Intake Professionals help systematize your business. However, know that you can’t outsource your core competency.

 

The Power of the System

  • This book is the nuts and bolts of how to run a law firm and includes templates, emails, retainer agreements, and policies. 
  • Running a law firm is not just the technical aspects but also managerial and entrepreneurial.

 


Writing A Book

  • Attorneys should focus on finding a niche and creating themselves as an authority.
  • Having a book that is written for your target market is the ultimate business card.
  • If you are creating content on your website, then you already have content for a book.
  • It costs around $2K for a self-publishing company to produce your book.

 

Newsletters

  • Only 5-10% of people received e-mail newsletters, and many end up in the spam filter. However, a hardcopy newsletter has staying power.
  • Most lawyers’ emails are screened by their team, so newsletters don’t always get passed along.
  • Your goal should be to get in every county Bar Association in your local region within 60-90 miles. Solicit their editorial staff and offer to write articles for their monthly newsletter.
  • Generic newsletters will end up in the garbage, so it has to be you that generates the content.
  • John personally sets aside 3-4 hours monthly to write the copy, then sends it to the graphic designer.

 

Thank you for listening! If you enjoyed this podcast, please subscribe and leave a 5 star rating and review in iTunes!

 

Links to Resources Mentioned

Ultimate Injury Law

The Power of The System

Call Ruby

Legal Intake Professionals

Delivering Happiness  

Advantage Media

Help Without Hassles

Infusionsoft

Blick Digital    

jfisherlawyer@gmail.com

jfisher@fishermalpracticelaw.com

Aug 10, 2015

In this week’s episode of The Law Practice Doctor, Sam Gaylord interviews Joan Sotkin, who is an author, coach, and business woman and has helped thousands of people understand why they do what they do with their money, and alter their financial behavior. Joan is the founder of the popular website Prosperity Place and author of Build Your Money Muscles. Her passion is helping people improve their relationship with money and themselves.

 

Main Questions Asked:

  • Describe going to Debtors Anonymous and your feelings of being applauded.
  • What are the common diagnoses of problems amongst entrepreneurs?
  • If I want to learn basic financial skills, where do I start?
  • What can a person do to change their emotional relationship with their money and themselves?

 

Key Lessons Learned:

Family Origin & Financial Issues

  • Our family origin issues affect the habitual emotions we develop and the decisions we make.
  • It is common for people to express their shame through money.
  • The reason people have financial problems is that they feel alone and disconnected.
  • The base of most of our dysfunctional behavior is the human need for connection.
  • The history of how we were touched as a small child will effect our business and financial life.
  • Someone who was touch deprived is often an under-earner.
  • One of the ways humans touch each other is with money (appreciation).
  • When you are touch deprived, you keep touch away because you don’t know how to deal with it.
  • If longing for touch is your habit, then that translates into longing for money.

 

Money As A Symbol of Relationships

  • Pay attention to the beginning part of your life to see the emotional habits that developed early.
  • Certain feelings you develop through your early life will act out through your business and finances.
  • When you are saying, ‘I need more money,’ you are actually saying, ‘I need more people.’
  • How you deal with money is how you deal with your relationship with yourself and others.
  • Whenever you hear yourself longing for money, ask yourself what you are really saying.
  • When you get to the emotional foundation of how you are approaching life, it is going to make a huge difference and make it easier to want to take care of your money because then you’re taking care of yourself.

 

Problems Amongst Entrepreneurs

  • Financial fear happens regardless of how much money is in the bank or how much is coming in.
  • Fear stems from worrying about running out of resources, which is a basic human fear.
  • Financial fear means you are always in the future and afraid of ‘what will happen when…’
  • Focusing on the present is about learning how to recognize what you are feeling.
  • “I haven’t reached my income potential” is one of the most common problems Joan sees.

 

Basic Financial Skills

  • Write down income and expenses (you don’t have to be good with numbers, just data entry).
  • QuickBooks is a bit too complicated in the beginning, so start with Quicken.
  • Money is one of the biggest tools for personal growth and development as it reveals our values and feelings. Look at the feelings and the money.
  • Ask yourself, “What is my money telling me?”
  • Money is just a bunch of numbers and doesn’t have anything to do with who you are.

 

Change You Emotional Relationship With Money 

  • If every time you look at your bank balance you feel shame, then that is your response to that stimuli.
  • Your goal is to be able to look at your money from a more detached point of view and realize it is just a number.
  • We have beliefs that lead to thoughts that lead to emotions. It is our emotions that inform our decisions and our behavior.
  • Out emotions are the bridge from our internal to external selves. 

 

Recognize, Release, and Replace

  • Recognize: The first step in the process of change is awareness and to recognize the kinesthetic experience of their emotions.
  • Release: Can be as simple as expressing the feeling.
  • Replace: What does satisfaction feel like? Teach yourself the feeling you want to experience, and shift yourself into a different state and replace the negative with the positive. 

 

Thank you for listening! If you enjoyed this podcast, please subscribe and leave a 5 star rating and review in iTunes!

 

Links to Resources Mentioned

Prosperity Place

Build Your Money Muscles

Joan Sotkin

Healing Your Financial Shame (free)  

 

 

Aug 3, 2015

In this week’s episode of The Law Practice Doctor, Sam Gaylord interviews Carmen Torres, who has more than twenty years experience creating equitable and safe collaborative workplace environments for both employers and employees. Carmen has successfully helped small to mid-size businesses establish reliable and stable human resources departments. Her approach involves a 360-degree analysis of human resource functions that result in job descriptions, policy procedure manuals, training and development, employee retention, and employee communication. During the show, Sam and Carmen discuss how law firms can improve their human resources departments and align for success.

 

Main Questions Asked:

  • What does a Human Resources Coordinator or Manager do?
  • What is an I-9 file?
  • What is the best resource for basic HR materials?
  • How does one know what HR documents are necessary?
  • What organization audits HR departments?
  • How do you figure out what kinds of HR problems a company has?
  • What are common problems you regularly see employers have difficulty keeping track of?
  • What are practical tips for terminating an employee?
  • If an employee is driving me bonkers, can I just get rid of him?

 

Key Lessons Learned:

 

HR Basics

  • A human resources representative is someone who manages all employee files.
  • If the company offers benefits, the HR representative becomes the employee contact.
  • An I-9 is the form required to determine whether an employee is eligible to work in the USA. This is required to be completed within 24-hours of the employee being hired.
  • New hire orientation packets include the employee application, background checks, emergency information form, and offer letters.
  • The offer letter provides the employee start date, salary or hourly rate, position name, who they will be reporting to, and the official hours of employment. 
  • Employee evaluations and requests for time off are examples of documents that would be kept in the personnel file.

 

HR Audits

  • The Department of Industrial Relations is the department that audits HR in California. This is the Labor Commissions Office, which is also known as the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement. This department was established to adjudicate wage claims, investigate discrimination, and enforces labor codes statutes.
  • Each state is different but has their own agency to do investigation on such matters.

 

Diagnosing HR Problems

  • The best way to start is to analyze where the business is and determine how long the business has been in operation, the number of employees, and current documents on file.
  • Creating an employee handbook is an important step for employers to provide so policies can be made clear on things such as vacation, sick days, and benefits.
  • Carmen recommends organizations doing ‘self audits’ on HR so a plan of action can be constructed.

 

Common HR Problems

  • A lot of employers don’t know how to deal with employee relations matters.
  • Employee relations issues can include communication between an employee and a supervisor or conflict between employees.

 

Tips for Terminating an Employee

  • Determine if other corrective actions have already been provided to the employee.
  • Provide a timeline of when management has spoken to that particular employee regarding that situation.
  • The employee needs to be aware and understand where they are at fault and have a timeframe to correct the behavior.
  • A plan must be provided outlining actions they must maintain in order to continue with employment with the organization.
  • If you decide to get rid of an employee, you need to consider their age and if the reason you are getting rid of them could be misconstrued or looked at as retaliation.
  • As an employer, you have the right to terminate an employee at anytime with or without notice, but it is in your best interest to always look at the records before making any decisions.

 

Prescription for HR Success

  • If you put in place the appropriate HR management steps from the beginning, as your company grows, you won’t have to go through a major revamp as you’ll have been doing it the right way from the beginning.
  • If employees are not open to making changes, you need to be ready to make immediate decisions.
  • It’s important to address issues when employees come to you about one individual.

 

Thank you for listening! If you enjoyed this podcast, please subscribe and leave a 5 star rating and review in iTunes!

 

Links to Resources Mentioned

Carmen on Facebook

My HR Specialist

Carmen@myhrspecialist.com

 

 

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