I don’t know too much about all the people that read The Greatest American Lawyer blog. I do get a lot of emails. Some of them I am able to answer. Some of them I am not. But I know from these emails that a lot of solos are reading (or they like to call our fraternity/sorority, independent practitioners). I know a lot of medium firm lawyers read as well as associates at large firms who would love nothing more than to get out. Many attorneys read for the technology tips and especially the "paperless office" implementation. I get a lot of questions which simply ask about how we bill our clients. I get comments all the time from lawyers hungry to find another way, but unsure how to implement the change.
I will try to comment more on these issues over the summer. I am settled into a billing model which is relatively simple and straightforward. It uses time as one of many factors in deriving a bill to a client. My virtual worker program is now rock solid. We will soon have over ten virtual employees performing a variety of functions from case manager on down to law clerk (no offense law clerks). Our scanning process is finally honed. Our wireless network is up. Our extranet is programmed in. Our billing process is on line from the dictation of entries to the five page cover letter which accompanies every detailed bill.
I fear I won’t be an independent practitioner for much longer. I need one or two other local attorneys to handle work, work with clients and provide the attention needed for a customer service oriented firm.
But don’t worry. I am bringing the independent practitioner process forward and building relationships with other attorneys. A relationship will certainly not be a standard partnership. I haven’t quite got it square in my head yet. But I’ll let you know when it pops in there.