There are plenty of best lawyers in Calgary to choose from, each with its strengths and particular work style. With such a wide array of competitors, it can be overwhelming trying to figure out how to stand in the spotlight and create a successful firm.
Whether you are trying to improve your current business or want to start one from scratch, there are some features that you should be willing to adopt in your firm. These are the main eight qualities that every law firm should have to be successful in the legal world.
Quality Over Quantity
A lot of people think that being a successful lawyer means having several offices across the province, going overseas, and having hundreds of lawyers collaborating with you. This is not always true. Top law firms stand out from others because of the quality of the services that they provide, and not the quantity.
In fact, having too much work on your desk and not enough time or resources to go through it all can be a dealbreaker. Good lawyers will take their time to analyze all documents and produce an appropriate strategy to represent their client’s best interests instead of taking new cases as if much of the same.
When accepting new clients, a successful lawyer will listen to them and value their meetings. After all, clients and cases are not just numbers.
This appreciation for clients and taking the time to provide them with excellent work is the engine of any business, and it is no different in the legal world. If you want the recognition of being a successful lawyer, you need to give people the reason to, especially if you are working for individual people rather than companies.
You need to have in mind that you are collaborating with your clients, and not just making a living out of them, so their best interests should also be yours. While providing legal advice or suggesting a course of action, you need to consider their concerns and wishes while explaining what your professional opinion is. That is if you know for sure that a client’s case is not strong enough to reach the desired settlement, you must propose the next best agreement and explain why.
By making sure to offer the best customer service, you can guarantee to gain the trust and respect of your current and future clients.
Although many professionals try to excel in many areas at once like in real estate law, family law, criminal law, wills, estates law, etc. The legal world is huge, and with so many subjects to study, it is much harder to try to have a deep knowledge of it all. For that reason, most law firms will have only a few areas of practice, or at least have specialized groups for each of their areas. The bigger your law firm, the more you can afford to have many areas, as long as your professionals are well-divided, specialized people.
Having to navigate between too many areas will lower the quality of work that a person can finish, so choosing to offer expert work in a single area instead of good-enough results in many, is a wise decision to make.
Law firms are not made of a single lawyer. Whether you team up with other lawyers and paralegals or just with multidisciplinary partners, you are still working with other people. Being the head of a business is a great responsibility and should be taken seriously.
Successful law firms have leaders, not bosses. Knowing the difference is essential because although the terms seem similar, they are completely distinct: a boss is someone who delegates work and commands, but a leader is a person who guides and inspires. Being a leader is a much harder job.
A strong leader will be able to conduct their team without overwhelming them and will gain the respect of their employees easily. Rather than being bossy and dictating what others must do, no questions asked, you should be able to listen to your coworkers’ opinions and show them which is the best course of action and why. A law firm walks and grows together.
Law school will not teach you everything, and how to run a business is not included in the program. To run a successful business, you must have a business mind.
It is not impossible for a lawyer to learn the craft, but it takes time and patience. If you have no background in administrative work, you will have to learn from scratch. A lot of senior lawyers take business courses and complete MBA programs to add to their legal experience and doing so is recommended.
Another alternative is to team up with a business partner who will take care of the company while you take care of the clients. It is no shame to ask someone else to do it for you—you are too busy offering the best legal services in town!
Spirit of Community
Legal assistance is essential to every community, and a fundamental part of society and democracy. Being an active part of your local community is your moral duty as an attorney. You must pay attention to what happens around you, speak up against injustice, and help shape a better future and sustainable development.
You can choose where to focus your attention: offering pro bono representation, donating to charity, participating in local events, or simply providing legal information. Doing so tells people that you are not just worried about yourself and your business, but that you are actively committed to making a difference. Not only you will gather more clients and recognition from that, but you will also feel rewarded in a broader sense.
Corruption is one of the greatest evils in our world. When someone falls for it, it can be hard to get back on the good track or be respected again in the community. To lead a successful law firm, you must always value ethics in your work environment, with your peers, and with your clients.
Doing so is not simply acting by the book and making sure that you are keeping yourself true to ethics, you should actively reject wrongdoings. Staying passive to corruption and injustice will not help eradicate it and may even contribute to a poisonous environment since there is no one stopping it from happening.
Adaptation and Innovation
The modern world is ever-changing, and it changes at a fast pace. Reaching the top and being a victorious lawyer with a well-led business is not a single-day achievement. You need to keep always working towards success to avoid falling back.
With new technologies, people change the way they do things. An online meeting now can be much more convenient to new clients than an in-person one and exchanging text messages can facilitate negotiations much more than a phone call. You cannot be resistant to change: learn how to adapt yourself to what is new and modernize your practice.
Do not be afraid, also, to create innovation yourself. If you have an idea of how to make your professional life much easier for you and your clients, go for it. Ask for other people’s opinions, draw a new business model and be audacious.
The path to shaping a successful law firm is full of surprises and intricate details that can make or break someone, but ultimately, you are in control of your own triumph. By getting yourself familiarised with these eight qualities that make a law firm stand out, you are already ahead of many others.