By Peter Frankl*
It’s Time To Do Law Differently is the newly released book by Lucy Dickens. If you are tired of the grind of selling your time and looking for an alternative way to monetise your law qualifications and experience, there may be no better place to start than Lucy Dickens’ new book.
The subtitle of the book is: How to reshape your firm and regain your life. This is the ‘why?’ It’s not about getting rich. It’s about the quality of your life as a service provider. If you want to get rich, just bill 2,000 hours per year at $500 per hour. That’s a million bucks a year. If you want to get richer, just increase your hourly rate by x%.
2,000 hours sounds exhausting doesn’t it, especially when each hour is truly worth $500. Lucy Dickens says there is another way. She has called it ‘Productise and Profit’.
Contrasting a legal practice with a business that sells legal products
- A legal practice is made up of expert legal practitioners. A business that sells legal products is made up of systems.
- A legal practice is based on the personal brands of individual rainmakers. A business that sells legal products is based on a business brand and modern marketing.
- With a legal practice, clients engage individual lawyers. With a business that sells legal products, clients engage the business.
- A legal practice is based on manual labour. A legal business is technology enabled.
- A legal practice sells time and a legal business sells solutions.
It starts with a change in mindset. Lucy Dickens writes, “You need to stop thinking of your law firm as a practice and start thinking of it as a business that sells legal products.”
Where will you find the time?
If you are flat-out billing and making money, albeit under incredible stress, when are you going to have the time to make legal products? It is going to require time away from client work, family life, golf or whatever you are doing now. Once you have created your legal products, that’s not the end of the matter. You will need to find a way to put them in front of prospects who will buy them.
Perhaps this is why doing law differently is most prominently adopted by those who are starting a new law firm – or more accurately a new ‘law business’. There are not the distractions yet of excessive client commitments.
According to Lucy Dickens, a business selling legal products must have fixed prices: “Setting a price for your product involves finding a win-win between the client’s perceived value of the service and your cost of delivery and profit margins.”
“This book is for leaders of small law firms who want to fundamentally change the way they do business.” Lucy Dickens presents a six-step process called, Productise and Profit.
If you are going to Productise and Profit, you need a book such as this. Lucy Dickens successfully presents a model of how and why to do it. It is however not a workbook of examples, case studies and how-to guides. When it comes time to implement the model, you will need to find not only the time and money to do it but also the specialist expertise for turning your services into products.
More at www.lucydickens.com.au/book
*Lucy Dickens kindly provided Legal Practice Intelligence with a review copy of It’s Time To Do Law Differently at the request of Legal Practice Intelligence.