Podcast category: Best Legal Practices

ABA Journal: Asked and Answered

How can lawyers maximize relaxation while on vacation?

We’d all love to be able to unplug completely while we’re on vacation, but for many lawyers it’s not that simple. Meeting your duty to your clients might mean that you can’t just leave your phone at home. But how can you keep distractions to a minimum and make the most out of your time off? The ABA Journal’s Stephanie Francis Ward gleans some tips and tricks from Jones Day partner Lawrence D. Rosenberg.

Lunch Hour Legal Marketing

The Summer of Lunch Part 1: Law Firm Marketing That Works!

Because there are no seminars over the summer, Lunch Hour Legal Marketing is releasing four interviews conducted during Mass LOMAP’s 5th Annual Marketing Conference in Boston. The first of these four is with Larry Port, CEO of Rocket Matter, a cloud-based law practice management system.

On this episode of Lunch Hour Legal Marketing, Jared Correia and Larry Port discuss the outdated landscape of legal marketing, how lawyers can effectively market their practice online, and the importance of measuring data and analyzing the right metrics. This fun interview will make you laugh, and you might learn something too.

Topics Include:

  • Law firm marketing as a mustache
  • Pogo sticking a web search
  • Why potential clients leave your site
  • Misleading vanity metrics
  • How effective social media is
  • Call to action
  • Keyword advertising (pay per click)
  • Content marketing

Larry Port, CEO of Rocket Matter, is also a speaker and award winning writer at the crossroads of the legal profession and cutting edge technology. He frequently discusses marketing, design and efficiency, and quality techniques in the software industry that can be leveraged by lawyers and legal professionals. He was named to the 2012 Fastcase 50 honoring the law’s smartest, most courageous innovators, techies, visionaries and leaders.

If you want to tweet about any of the Summer of Lunch podcasts, use the hashtag #SummerofLunch.

New Solo

Using Social Media to Market Your Solo Practice

By now we’ve all heard about social media marketing for law firms and other businesses. Everybody online seems to be talking about Facebook likes, Twitter followers, LinkedIn connections, and even using Instagram, Pinterest, and Slideshare to market companies and firms of all sizes. But what does a successful social media campaign look like? And what approach should lawyers take when starting a solo practice?

In this episode of New Solo, Adriana Linares and Jason Marsh interview C. Todd Smith, a small firm lawyer who has used various forms of social media for marketing his practice. Jason Marsh, an online marketing specialist for small businesses and law firms, also gives his insight into the importance of social media.

Topics discussed:

  • Top-of-mind marketing
  • Facebook connections, referrals, and word-of-mouth marketing
  • Facebook’s algorithm changes
  • Boosting posts
  • Twitter networking
  • Offline marketing and foot traffic
  • Yelp, Yellowpages, and Foursquare
  • Google+ page for your business
  • The Orlando Business Journal social media contest

For lawyers launching a solo practice, this podcast will provide a broad idea of where to start with your social media campaign. Todd Smith recommends that lawyers choose one or maybe two platforms to focus on rather than trying to tackle all of them.

C. Todd Smith has been practicing law for 20 years in the Orlando area. He is the founder of a small law firm which focuses in the area of plaintiff’s personal injury law. Todd entered his company into Social Madness, an Orlando Business Journal social media contest and did very well because of his business’s active Facebook page. He is also very involved with Kiwanis, an organization providing teaching service and leadership to young people around the world.

Special thanks to our sponsor, Solo Practice University.

Paralegal Voice

How To Manage Emails for an Efficient Workflow

As paralegals, we are known multitaskers, often confronting many tasks at once. While multitasking seems like a process of getting more done, it often results in distraction and inefficiency. And while it is nearly impossible for paralegals to avoid distraction completely, we can learn to manage email intake for a better overall workflow.

In this episode of The Paralegal Voice, Vicki Voisin interviews Anthony Johnson, attorney and business technology author, about the best strategy for checking email, how he manages his tech-savvy law firm, and what paralegals can do with or without technology to improve workflow. Johnson begins by explaining how he checks over 80 emails a day by prioritizing, answering what he can quickly, and creating tasks. He then closes his email browser to avoid distraction, and finishes tasks before looking at his email again. In this podcast, Johnson also discusses how paralegals can avoid multitasking, how to use case management and internal messaging for communication, the importance of instant decision making, and how to manage deadlines in a law firm. Voisin and Johnson conclude by discussing how paralegals can urge lawyers and managing partners to embrace technology solutions in a very top-down system.

Anthony Johnson is a managing partner at Johnson & Vines law firm in Little Rock, Arkansas. The firm represents individuals in mass torts, medical device litigation, and other serious personal injury cases. Johnson has been recognized as a Top 40 Under 40 trial lawyer by the National Trial Lawyers and one of America’s “Techiest” Lawyers by the ABA Journal. He is widely published in the areas of law, technology and entrepreneurship.

Special thanks to our sponsors, Boston UniversityNALA, and ServeNow.

The Florida Bar Podcast

Florida Lawyer Complaints and the Disciplinary Review Committee

The Florida Bar Disciplinary Review Committee (DRC) oversees the prosecution and appeals for disciplinary violations by Florida lawyers. When a client, opposing counsel, or judge files a complaint against an attorney, it goes through a preliminary investigation, geological branch investigation, and then is sent to a grievance committee to determine probable cause. The DRC oversees this process and committee board members review each case before it is sent to the Florida Supreme Court, making recommendations on disciplinary action, dismissal, or requesting additional review. Additionally, members of the DRC recommend policy lawyer regulation and other disciplinary matters. What does the average Florida lawyer need to know to avoid this process?

In this episode of The Florida Bar Podcast, Adriana Linares interviews Adria Quintela, Florida Bar director of lawyer regulation, and Michelle Suskauer, chairperson of the Disciplinary Review Committee, about trends in the way the Florida Supreme Court is treating disciplinary actions, the top issues causing lawyers to receive complaints, and the proper course of action within the grievance process. Adria discusses the Florida Bar’s process in dealing with complaints and explains that the largest problems come from a lack of client-lawyer communication. Most complaints could be avoided, she explains, by picking up the phone or sending an email. Michelle discusses the Supreme Court’s decreased tolerance for unprofessional behavior and how it might relate to technology, social media, and far-reaching media attention. She has noticed that lawyers receive complaints due to disorganization and missing deadlines. Florida lawyers should note that these issues are avoidable and, for the most part, unintentional, but will end up on a permanent record.

Michelle Suskauer, is a West Palm Beach criminal lawyer, serves on The Florida Bar Board of Governors, 15th Judicial Circuit, and is chairperson of the Disciplinary Review Committee. She is also a nationally known legal analyst who has made hundreds of television and radio appearances. Her leadership roles include past president of the Palm Beach County Bar Association, vice president of the Board of Directors of the Legal Aid Society of Palm Beach County, and past president of the Florida Association for Women Lawyers, Palm Beach County Chapter.

Adria Quintela is staff counsel and director of Lawyer Regulation for The Florida Bar. She supervises the operations of the entire Lawyer Regulation Department of The Florida Bar, including direct supervision of the Chief Branch Discipline Counsel in each of the five branch offices of the department. She has been with the Florida Bar for 19 years, but previously handled commercial litigation for a Miami law firm and was a plaintiff’s trial attorney for Krupnick & Campbell, a Ft. Lauderdale law firm.

The Digital Edge

The ABA Commission on the Future of Legal Services

The legal service industry has been changing rapidly, causing many lawyers to worry about the future of their practice. Many potential clients are now looking online for solutions to legal problems. Despite this, there is still a large percentage of the population without access to the legal services they need. In order to deal with this emerging legal marketplace shift, American Bar Association President William Hubbard formed the ABA Commission on the Future of Legal Services. But what does the commission do and how is it benefitting lawyers and the general public alike?

In this episode of The Digital Edge, Sharon Nelson and Jim Calloway interview Judy Perry Martinez, chair of the ABA Presidential Commission on the Future of Legal Services. Martinez discusses specific actions the commission is taking to find solutions, including grassroots meetings across the country, a national summit, public hearings, and lawyer education. She explains how discussions with lawyers, judges, technology innovators, law students, academics, and law librarians bring awareness to issues in the changing legal landscape and encourages solution ideas. These changes present challenges and opportunities for lawyers today, but those who do not jump on board will likely be left behind.

Judy Perry Martinez is currently is spending a year in residence at Harvard where she is an Advanced Leadership Initiative Fellow. Previously, she has served as vice president and chief compliance officer of Northrop Grumman Corporation, a major aerospace and defense company. Prior to going in-house, she was a commercial litigator for 21 years at the New Orleans law firm of Simon, Peragine, Smith & Redfearn. Judy served as the ABA lead representative to the U.N. and has held many leadership positions in the ABA over the last 30 years, including service on the ABA Board of Governors and its executive committee, chair of the Standing Committee on the Federal Judiciary and the ABA Commission on Domestic Violence, and chair of the ABA Young Lawyers Division.

Special thanks to our sponsor, ServeNow.

Legal Toolkit

The Lean Startup: Eliminating Wasteful Practices in Your Law Firm?

The idea of a lean business was recently made popular by Eric Ries’s book, “The Lean Startup.” The lean concept involves eliminating waste and resources that don’t create value for the end client. This practice has become predominant in the tech world, in which companies create a minimum viable product, test it early and often, and adapt to client feedback. But how can we adapt lean concepts to law firms and the legal industry that is service-based? Where should a new law firm start?

In this episode of The Legal Toolkit, Heidi Alexander interviews Nicole Bradick, former litigator and chief strategy officer at Curo Legal, about what it means to have a lean business, how to apply lean concepts to law firms, and where new lawyers and established law firms can start. Bradick begins by clearly explaining the lean concept; the company builds a minimum viable product, measures how it helps clients, learns and adapts to feedback, and repeats the process. Lawyers can use lean concepts, she says, by making fewer initial assumptions about client needs and adapting to what works. She discusses how law firms should maintain low overheads to adjust for shifts in the market while adopting efficient practices to increase productivity. Cloud-based technologies like practice management systems, contact relationship management systems, email platforms, research tools, and document management systems can be beneficial in streamlining practices, but Bradick urges lawyers to properly learn to use the technologies or risk creating more problems. Obviously, starting a lean law firm is easier said than done, but it will likely be successful in this changing legal market.

Nicole Bradick is the chief strategy officer at Curo Legal, a company that provides practice management advice and consulting to law firms. Nicole previously founded and operated Custom Counsel, a legal services outsourcing company, until it was acquired by Curo Legal. Nicole has been named to the ABA Journal Legal Rebels List and to the Fastcase list of 50 global legal innovators.

Disclaimer: Please note that Heidi Alexander and Nicole Bradick refer to Eric Ries as David Ries.

Special Reports

ABA President-Elect Paulette Brown at the 2015 ABA National Summit

Paulette Brown will take the reigns as president of the American Bar Association on August 6th, 2015. Legal Talk Network producer Laurence Colletti sits down with her at the ABA National Summit on Innovation in Legal Services to discuss the innovative solutions presented at the conference and Brown’s plans for her year as ABA president. Tune in to hear about access to justice programs already in practice, Brown’s plans for diversity and inclusion, and increased benefits to ABA members.

Special Reports

ABA National Summit: ‘Innovation Beyond the Legal Sphere’

Legal Talk Network producer Laurence Colletti interviews Judit Rius Sanjuan, Ron Dolin, Denis Weil, and Professor Manny Medrano, panelists on ‘Innovation Beyond the Legal Sphere’ at the 2015 ABA National Summit on Innovation in Legal Services. The thought leaders outside the legal profession discuss solutions to the problem of access to legal services. Whether with increased incentivization or a change in legal education, the panelists discuss getting lawyers to engage in a multidisciplinary arena and open their minds to technological innovation.

Judit Rius is the U.S. Manager and a legal policy advisor of the Access Campaign team within Doctors Without Borders.

Ron Dolin is a legal technologist and research fellow at Stanford Law’s Center on
the Legal Profession. He also teaches at Notre Dame Law School.

Denis Weil is an Advanced Leadership Initiative Fellow at Harvard University where he does research on community-based innovation. Most recently, he was corporate vice-president of design and innovation for McDonald’s Corporation.

Professor Manny Medrano is a broadcast journalist, adjunct law professor, trial lawyer, and founding partner of a white collar criminal boutique law firm in Pasadena, California.

Special Reports

ABA National Summit: A Legal Mentor with Judge Charles Harrington and Mark Britton

Former Legal Talk Network host and Fellow at CodeX Monica Bay interviews Judge Charles Harrington and Avvo CEO Mark Britton at the 2015 ABA National Summit on Innovation in Legal Services. As Britton’s uncle and mentor, Judge Harrington talks about giving advice to a younger lawyer and maintaining balance in his own life. Britton discusses the immense help he had from his support systems and how discussing his decisions led to career and life success. They both advise young lawyers to prepare, consider their options, and work hard. There is no simple formula for success.

Honorable Charles V. Harrington is a judge for the Arizona Superior Court in Pima County, Arizona. He attended Gonzaga University School of Law where he received his J.D. (magna cum laude).

Prior to founding Avvo in 2006, Mark Britton was the Executive Vice President of
Worldwide Corporate Affairs of InterActiveCorp Travel (IACT) and Expedia, Inc. He
was also Expedia’s first general counsel. Mark received his law degree from George Washington University.

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