3 Skills That Define The Future Lawyer2019-05-022019-05-19https://legalup.me/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/logo.pngLegalUphttps://legalup.me/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/logo.png200px200px
3 Skills That Define The Future Lawyer
No one can be 100% certain of what the future will bring for lawyers, but wise lawyers should ask themselves already today in which skills and areas they should focus more in order to be ready to the changing reality. The top answers are listed below:
Numerous work fields have undergone disruption caused by technology such as, tourism (Airbnb), financial services (Paypal etc.), public transportation (Gett, Uber), however, the legal world has not yet undergone a disruption. The reason for this is that up until recently, there was limited use of sophisticated technology such as AI and automation in the legal world.
Some might say that the reason technology has not influenced the legal world until now might be related to the notion that lawyers are relatively conservative and don’t tend to be innovative and early adopters of new technologies.
There is a consensus that the way law firms are currently operating will change in the future, however there are many different opinions on when exactly the change will occur and what will be its scope.
Lawyers around the world are dealing with the question – How would the Future Lawyer job looks like? How can we prepare for it?
While some lawyers want tech to help them with their repetitive tasks to free up their time to more complex, professional work are looking forward for the change to occur, others are intimidated by the legalTech and are worried that no work will be left for them. While no one can be 100% certain of the answer to the above questions, it is wise for lawyers to invest time enhancing the skills below more in order to be ready to the changes in the legal world that are coming due to AI and document automation.
Here are 3 main skills that every lawyer should strengthen
Seeing technology as an opportunity rather than a threat.
Embracing Technologies like document automation, document review and AI will disrupt the business of your law firm for the better. . Even something as simple as moving your firm’s accounts from paper and digitalizing them is a small step that can reduce your expenses and minimizing operations efforts . None of the activities such as accounting, billing, scheduling meetings and filing documents, qualify as “legal work”, yet they are core business operations for effective legal practice and it’s time to use technology to improve them as a first step.
Many legal professionals have resisted change, but now is the time for them to use technology to make their lives easier for the following reasons:
Efficiency: Lawyers in practice go through tens or hundreds of past cases to find the specific ones that will help them with their clients case. This a bit like sending a human to find a needle in the haystack. According to studies, lawyers spend a quarter (and in certain cases up to one third) of their time doing such research. Document automation for example can manage you know-how when it comes to contracts and other legal documents creation, make you more efficient and more agile to the changes the future may bring, such as changes in the business models, or changes in the way clients wants to consume their legal services (some of them may be furnished online).
Cost-effective legal advice to clients – One of the biggest reasons for lawyers to deploy technology in their practice is to provide cost-effective legal advice to clients. Clients may not care about the complexity of their legal problem. They want to hire the best lawyers at fees that suit their pockets. This makes it imperative for lawyers to use technology that saves their time and completes redundant tasks at a lesser cost and address a wider audience.
Mundane tasks: Whilst some lawyers fear technology, wrongly thinking that it might replace them, the reality is that many lawyers end up spending significant amounts of time carrying out relatively mundane task that can easily be done more efficiently through technology. Would you be more liberated, challenged and mentally uplifted if you were able to free up your time to focus on meeting clients or dealing with academic legal issues?
Cost-savings – Legal practice management software allows users to track every billable second, assign tasks, offer online payment options, manage client funds and give an accurate picture of a firm’s performance. With the extra time afforded by these efficiencies, lawyers are able to bill more hours and improve the firm’s bottom line. In addition, many law firms are choosing to go paperless, freeing up time that was once spent on managing paper documents to concentrate on more important aspects of the legal profession.
Better customer experience. – Now more than ever, it’s critical for a law firm or lawyer to keep their clients happy. Even if you provide the best legal work in your area, if your customers are not satisfied with the overall service that they received, you won’t be hearing from them again. Customer satisfaction should be a top priority for lawyers nowadays, and legal technology can make this easier for you. Software that specializes in e-mail marketing helps you reach out to your client and keep them engaged. A live chat feature on your firm’s website can also help increase customer satisfaction and translate website visitors to clients. An online questionnaire to create a bespoke contract based on the firm’s know-how can give your clients a 24/7 service on a designated clients portal using a sophisticated document automation tool.
2. Understand clients business requirements
Individuals and business clients of every shape, size, and industry want the same basic things from their lawyers. Generally speaking, they say their attorney should be “Responsive and really knows my business.”
Technically, what lawyers do are tasks like write contracts, give legal advice, negotiate, litigate disputes, and assist with regulatory compliance.. However, how we do this work—responsively, and with and an understanding of the client’s needs, business and industry—is where we need to focus if we want to be perceived as great lawyers which stands our great reputation also in a changing world.
Clients don’t trust lawyers who don’t have understanding of their industry
If you don’t understand how business is done, your client won’t trust you. Your client has come to you so that you can protect his business. As a lawyer you must talk to your client/clients at length about the services he wants, figure out how business is done in his domain or industry. Invest in researching the field to get a deep understanding of market and way of business As a lawyer, If you don’t know how business is done you wouldn’t even ask the right questions.
There will always be more experienced lawyers. You are competing with them for clients. Understanding business requirements is how you compete with more experienced lawyers and brand names – by having superior understanding of a niche.
Young lawyers can have an advantage of the rapidly changing business scenario, by building in-depth understanding of profitable business niches.
3. Communication/marketing skills
Marketing is strategic.
It is thinking about what you want in the way of more or better work, and then strategizing on the best way to find companies and individuals in need of the services you want them to buy. So too, lawyers are taught to canvas the landscape for available options to address a client’s situation and then chose one “decision‐tree” path for pursuing the matter.
If once marketing your law firm was through sponsoring a conference or promoting you placement in ranking and business credit scores, now those tactics are old fashioned and there is a shift.
Due to technology there are new ways to stand out as a lawyer and as a law firm.
New innovative marketing strategies could be, social media, digital marketing and inbound marketing.
Internet marketing involves creating and sharing content on social media networks in order to achieve your marketing and branding goals. Social media such as linkedin, Facebook, instagram, twitter are platforms that are becoming more and more dominant in today’s world. Being active on these platforms gives you a chance to engage with your audience and clients.
Lawyers too can benefit from these platforms in order to promote themselves and their firm.
It may come as no surprise that the marketplace has become increasingly more digital as technology continues to evolve. Today, it is very likely that when a person finds themselves in need of a lawyer, they will turn to the internet first – specifically the mobile internet.
A successful marketing campaign will help clients find the right lawyer to handle their legal needs, converting those google searchers into new clients.
Inbound marketing is a strategy is the recent world’s strongest keyword. This technique is fundamentally different from the classical marketing. The classical advertising strategy uses a direct approach which cries out, “come to us – we’re really awesome”. As opposed to the new strategy Inbound marketing focuses on the customer, in fact the clients journey does not start with his search for one ultimate service. The clients journey begins much earlier, long before he even knows what service is required.
The Inbound Marketing strategy distinguishes between several distinct personas. For each persona there is a layout of the various stages in the client’s journey of that persona and provide for each stage a suitable call for action.
Promoting and glorifying the individual lawyer makes them look like rockstars. As an attorney you are your personal brand.
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