If there’s a key lesson in this episode, it’s “Don’t try to do it all.” Guest Mike Morse founded the largest personal injury law firm in Michigan. But it wasn’t always that way. He started out trying to do everything himself, from trials to correspondence to hiring assistants to finding office space. Nobody in law school teaches you how to run a law firm – law school doesn’t even admit a law firm is a business. You need to learn how to run your firm like a business. Morse did just that.
Learn to delegate. Be a visionary. Be an entrepreneur. Build a brand, scale up, and succeed.
If you’re already leading a firm, take the next step. Offload tasks to others who share your values and hold them accountable. Build your business by doing what you’re best at and assigning others to do the things you don’t love.
For anyone running their own firm and wants to grow, this episode may be one of the most important podcasts of the year.
Special thanks to our
Intro: Before we start the show, I would like to say thank you to our sponsors: Lawclerk, Lawyaw and Scorpion.
Managing your law practice can be challenging. Marketing, time management, attracting clients, and all the things besides the cases that you need to do that aren’t billable. Welcome to this edition of The Unbillable Hour, the law practice advisory podcast. This is where you’ll get the information you need from expert guests and host, Christopher Anderson here on Legal Talk Network.
Christopher T. Anderson: Welcome to The Unbillable Hour. I am your host, Christopher Anderson, and today’s episode is about — well, it’s about you. We haven’t done a you in a while, and it’s important to do it from time to time because you are really the most important component of your firm, the quintessential component, one might say. If you remember, we have this triangle of things that a law firm business must do. We have to acquire new clients. We call that acquisition. We have to produce the results that we promised to those clients. We call that production. And then we have to achieve the business and professional results for the owners. In other words, pay them back for their investment of their time, money, sweat, blood, tears into the business.
Today’s episode is about those business results and how you are at the center of achieving them. And I’m really excited to have Michael Morse. He is the founder of the Mike Morse Law Firm as my guest. And the name of the episode today is You Can’t Do It All and You Shouldn’t Try. And again, Michael Morse, the founder of Mike Morse Law Firm. Mike sent us a bio, but he also sent us some other stuff. I mishmashed it together, and I’ll do my usual terrible job of introducing Mike. But I like to start with the most important thing, which was that Mike was fired from his first job. I think that’s an important piece of bio. Then his business office Burt(ph) then he was fired by his largest referral source. And Mike admits that in the first 13 years of his practice, he did it pretty much all on his own. He didn’t have much business knowledge. He didn’t have a real mentor, but he got one. And then eventually started working with Gino Wickman as a coach and began to understand that a law firm really is a business. He’s written a story about that, and he’s grown his business, we’ll learn a little bit more about it, but to a fairly impressive size. And he’s written a book called ‘Fireproof’, which I have thoroughly enjoyed myself. ‘How to Take Your Firm/Business from Unpredictable to Wildly Profitable’.
The Mike Morse Law Firm is the largest personal injury firm in Michigan. He’s grown to 150 employees, has served 25,000 clients and has collected more than a billion with a B for victims in auto, truck and motorcycle accidents. He’s been invited to lecture across the country on the practice of law and how to build a successful law firm. The ‘Fireproof’ book has reached number one Amazon bestselling author status, and I think also impressively he’s founded Project Backpack, which is a program that provides free backpacks and school supplies to students who need them. With that, that wasn’t such a terrible introduction, but anyway, Mike, welcome to the show.
Michael Morse: It was a little depressing. Chris, I got to be honest. I was thinking I needed to call my therapist after recapping my life like that. But I’m really happy to be here.
Christopher T. Anderson: I am happy to have you. You and I have spoken before after I read your book. We talked a little bit about coaching and how important it is, but I named the episode based on the stuff we’ve talked about before. You can’t do it all. From your story, from what I understand, you’ve learned that truth the hard way. And part of the mission of the Un-Billable Hour is to help our listeners learn it the less hard way. Just tell us, what do you mean by you’ve learned to not do it all? What were you doing and what did you learn?
Michael Morse: It’s almost like a perfect — I guess I’m sitting here. This is my 30th year of practicing law. I had my anniversary last week from graduating law school 30 years ago. Truly, Chris, for the first 15 years of my practice, I did everything. I found every client, I did all the writing, I did every Trial, I did the disbursements, I hired everybody. I found office space, I paid all the bills, I made all the decisions. If the secretary wasn’t coming in, she’d call me. If somebody wanted to raise or wasn’t — I mean, I did everything. And what I found by going around the country lecturing is that most people listening to this podcast are in that same boat. They’re doing everything. And in law school, there’s no discussion about business, okay? There’s nothing. There’s no discussion about how to run your business, what it takes to be a business. In fact, Chris, I can dare to say in three years of law school, they never said that a law firm is a business. I did not know a law firm was a business until I met Gino Wickman, who said, Michael, dummy, it’s a business.
I said, well, okay, well, what does that mean? And then so for the second 15 years of my career, I’ve been treating it like a business. I’m a perfect example of what not to do and what to do. I’ll tell you; I grew my firm to almost 30 people in those first 15 years. I have no idea how I did it. Tongue in cheek, I’m saying that I did it by doing everything. And I think I had some good business sense without even being trained in it. And then when I got business sense, when somebody said, this is what data looks like. This is what a scorecard or jumbotron looks like. This is what proper hiring and firing looks like. This is what a visionary is and what a COO is. And your law firm needs a COO. I’m like, what? Law firms don’t have COOs. Law firms have lawyers running it. And it was all formed to me. But once I adopted those ideas in my own practice, none of them that I came up with myself, my business took off from 30 people to 150 people, from 17 million in settlements to 160,000,000 in settlements in five years. I mean, like, not in a long time. And the only difference was I was introduced to business concepts that actually made sense. I learned how to have good meetings. I learned how to hold people accountable. I learned that I was a visionary, never heard that term before, and that I shouldn’t be running my firm, doing all those things that I’m not great at, didn’t love to do, didn’t know how to do, didn’t have the patience for. And I also learned a very important tool that you and I talked about; the one word called delegation.
Christopher T. Anderson: Yes.
Michael Morse: And lawyers are terrible delegators because every lawyer listening to this podcast thinks they’re the best at certain things, if not everything. And they’re like, I can’t delegate that. I can’t delegate that. My firm would fail if I delegated that. And one of my missions in writing the book and lecturing around the country is to look them in the eye and tell them they’re dead wrong.
Christopher T. Anderson: All right, what I want to do, because obviously you and I agree that that’s wrong, but I want to go back to those first 15 years because I think a lot of listeners are maybe saying, “Hey, in 15 years, he was doing $17 million in settlements. He had a team of 30. That’s not so bad.” they may be saying, like, until I reached that, I don’t need to do any of this stuff. Once you reach that 17 people, which I’m going to guess at that point, if you were taking home if you’re doing 17 million installments, the firm was grossing less figure six, and you’re taking home maybe one and a half of that to two. A lot of people will say, that’s pretty good. What do you have to say to those who might say, “Okay, well, when I get there, then I’ll listen to Mike.”
Michael Morse: I wasn’t happy. I was doing too much. I think Gino says there’s like one or one and a half percent of the people are visionaries out there. Most visionaries like to learn. It’s one of our traits. I think you probably have a lot of visionary in you, and you love to learn and you love to teach. And if people are tuning in their podcasts, they love to learn. And so, if you’re a visionary, you have lots of ideas, and it’s frustrating not getting those ideas done. When I learned that I’m allowed to delegate, when I learned that I’m allowed to hire a COO or a really good second in command, and that person can help offload all that stuff that I was doing that I didn’t like to do and I was terrible at, my life got so much better. And, yeah, my income went up 20 times, but that wasn’t what made me happy. What made me happy was that I was doing five or six things in my life, and I had more freedom, more economy, less stress, making more, and I was happier.
The people who are making a million, $2 million with 30 employees yeah, that’s pretty good. But you got to be happy. If you’re not happy and you’re not living your best life, then what’s the point? And so, it all came at a really good time for me in the mid-2000s, late 2007-2008, because I had three young kids and I wanted to be at every game and every recital and I wanted to do what I wanted to do. Just because I was making money didn’t mean I was happy. The second I hired a coach and went into my sessions and started delegating, I became way happier. And that’s my answer to those people thinking, what’s the guy complaining about?
Christopher T. Anderson: Yeah. Good. I think that’s important to hear. You probably would have been happier if you’d done it when you had four employees or three employees, like, somewhere much earlier in the process. When you were explaining about what changed for you, you mentioned two things, two roles. One, you said something about having a COO, and the other one is you said you got a coach and it was Gino Wickman, specifically.
Which one came first? Did you get a COO first or start working with Gino first?
Michael Morse: Gino. I didn’t know law firms were allowed to have COOs. When I tell you that I had no business sense. I didn’t know that I should know my numbers. I didn’t know the difference. “Oh, you’re nice. That was a nice 10-minute interview. I’m going to hire you.” It’s way more systematic now. I never had processes before. I didn’t have a jumbotron where I could see all of my important data and I didn’t know so many things. And once Gino opened my eyes to these things, everything changed. And now, when I get to introduce these ideas and see these aha moments, it’s so fun. It’s so exciting. And that’s one reason I’m helping teach and coach.
Christopher T. Anderson: Cool. And I do want to ask you about that as well. We’re talking to Michael Morse, but he is the CEO, the founder of the Mike Morse Law Firm. We’re talking to him about his early days and the aha moment that led to working with a coach and then working with a COO. We’re going to take a break here and hear from the folks who actually pay for this show. But when we come back, Mike, I want to ask you, because you’ve said delegation, how important it was, but people throw that word around without really knowing what it means. I’d like you to talk a little bit about when we come back from this break, what delegation means to you. But first, a word from our sponsors.
Now more than ever, an effective marketing strategy is one of the most important things for your firm. Scorpion can help. With nearly 20 years of experience serving the legal industry, Scorpion has proven methods to help you get the high value cases you deserve. Join thousands of attorneys across the country who have turned to Scorpion for effective marketing and technology solutions. For a better way to grow your practice, visit scorpionlegal.com. No one cites routine drafting as the reason they chose to become a lawyer, but that’s where a lot of time goes for solo practitioners and small firms. Lawyaw can help you transform your existing word documents into reusable templates with no coding required. Save time and avoid errors with intuitive features like conditional logic. Use a tool that empowers your experience and expertise. Learn more at lawyaw.com. And that’s L-A-W-Y-A-W dot com.
Christopher T. Anderson: We talked with Mike Morse. He’s the author of ‘Fireproof’ and the founder of the Mike Morse Law Firm. Mike, when we left, we were just beginning to talk about — well, you’ve mentioned delegation a few times, and I think a lot of listeners will be like, “Well, I delegate stuff all the time”, and I’m going to guess that before you met Gino Wickman, you thought you delegated things, too. What did you learn? What is delegation really mean to you?
Michael Morse: Look, at lawyers, of course, delegate, writing assignments, depositions, right? I mean, that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about the running of the law firm. Most lawyers I know run their law firms. Okay, great, that’s fine. They run their law firms. But if you have the desire to scale, if you have the desire to help more people, if you have the desire to grow the firm, you cannot do it if you do everything, if you’re in charge of everything, including being the rainmaker and most founders of firms, you don’t find a firm if you’re not a true entrepreneurial, visionary type. I mean, if you have no entrepreneurial, visionary sense, in my opinion, you’re working for somebody, making money, making a salary, and you’re always going to just be a worker and make salary. Nothing wrong with that. I got 150 of those lovely people and I couldn’t do without them. There’s nothing wrong with that. There’s nothing. I was born, some would say it could be a curse, it could be a gift. With the visionary entrepreneurial event that I have 10 ideas a day, and I managed to build my firm 27, 28 people.
And then I’m going to tell you a quick story. I went to see Gino Wickman my first day, and I brought three of my top people. They weren’t my leadership team yet. They were just three of my top people who have been with me the longest. I didn’t have a leadership team.
Christopher T. Anderson: Let me ask you, had you read ‘Traction’ yet?
Michael Morse: Yes.
Christopher T. Anderson: Okay.
Michael Morse: Simultaneously with that meeting. Simultaneously. I read it in a couple of days, and Gino said, “Bring your leadership team.” I said, “What’s a leadership?”
Christopher T. Anderson: Exactly.
Michael Morse: And so, I grabbed three people, I shut down my office for that day, basically, and he encouraged me during that first eight-hour day to tell them why we were there, what’s wrong, why I wasn’t happy. And I looked around the room and I got vulnerable, and I said, “Guys, I can’t do any more. I can’t move. I’m dying. I’m doing everything. Everybody in the firm is reporting to me, and I can’t do it.”
And my top lawyer raised his hand and said, “Michael, how about if all the lawyers who have questions come to me from now on? If they want a day off, if they want to raise, if they have a problem with the case, they come to me.” My head secretary, Laurie, says, “How about if all the secretaries come to me and I’ll train them and I will deal with their time off, and I will deal with where they sit?” My head paralegal said, “How about if all the paralegals come to me?” And that was all my employees.
In an eight-hour meeting, I walked out of that session with at least 50% of the burden taken off my shoulder, and I literally was able to breathe for the first time in many, many, many years. And what happened was magical. Not only did I feel lighter, but that ceiling opened up above my head, and I was able to do more. All those ideas I started being able to implement, all those marketing ideas, all those lunches I didn’t take, all those people I wanted to call for new cases, I could now do. And you know what happened, Chris? My firm doubled in the next two years, and then it doubled again, and then it doubled again. And the year after this story I told you, my building burned down. And Gino, we had a session with Gino shortly after that, and we told him, and I’m in near tears. And he said, “So, now you’re going to do all the things you’re doing and rebuild your old building and deal with the contractors and deal with the insurance and deal with this.” He says, “Michael, don’t be cheap. Go hire a good COO. You can afford it.” And I was frugal in those early days. I didn’t know what was going to happen. I had bad stuff happening to me. My dad died when I was 22. I got fired from that first job when I was 25. I was scared, and I said, “Okay, you’re right.” And it was the greatest thing I did.
Fourteen and a half years ago, I hired John O. Kissel(ph). And he was not a lawyer. He was a very smart MBA, and he was a leader and a manager. And he was the opposite of me. The opposite of me. He liked to manage and lead. He liked to read those long contracts. He had patience. He had attention to detail, which is the opposite of visionaries. He took over, and we had an org chart. I’m at the top of the org chart, he’s number two. And then all my direct reports, we had five or six at that time reported to him. All of a sudden, nobody’s coming to see me anymore.
Christopher T. Anderson: Did you get lonely?
Michael Morse: It freed me — not really. It freed me up again. This is a year and a half later. It had freed me up again. All those new activities that I was doing to build up my firm, he took over a lot of the day to day things that had crept back into my world. And then my direct reports weren’t even coming to me anymore. They were going to him. I had to learn that he was now the boss of my law firm. People are listening to this, thinking, no way. There’s no way I’m turning over the ownership of my — not the ownership. They’re running in my day to day of the law firm to a stranger, to an MBA, to a non-lawyer. Is that ethical? Is that legal? What the hell is he talking about? This firms, my baby, these employees are working here because of me.
Christopher T. Anderson: The ego, right?
Michael Morse: All these things. Yes, the ego play. And it took Gino years to really coach me through that John is the boss. John is the tiebreaker. John makes the decisions. But knowing what’s in my heart him and I talk all the time. We have our one on ones. He knows what’s important to me, and he makes it happen. It’s not his will, his vision. It’s my vision that I give to him and he implements it. That’s the major difference. It’s still my firm, it’s still my vision, but he makes sure I give him an idea. John, I want to go into Social Security. John, I want to handle employment cases. John, I want to invest in some mass toward cases. John, I want to take on more cases. I want to take on less cases. I want to expand. He does it.
Christopher T. Anderson: Let me ask you this, because it’s so interesting when someone reads ‘Traction’ or ‘Fireproof’, for that matter. We get this information, we get this vision, to use your word, in hindsight, it all worked out, and the listeners here are not where they are. Best you can remember when you sat there the day before you went to visit Gino Wickman, the day before you learned to delegate that first round of stuff where your chief paralegal, your head lawyer, your head — I forget what the third person was all said, the admin staff, I guess, will take on those direct reports. Did you see yourself as a good businessman or the good runner of a law firm since you didn’t know it was a business?
Michael Morse: Listen, like you said, I was making more money than I ever thought I’d make.
Christopher T. Anderson: Right.
Michael Morse: I don’t even know if I knew what the definition was then. I didn’t think in those terms. I knew that I — such a really good question, Chris, because one of the first things Gino had us do is come up with our core values that I know you help people set all the time, and I never heard the term core value. It was a new concept to me. And he said, what makes you guys successful? How are you bringing in $5, $6 million a year in fees? How are you doing all the things you’re doing? The four of us, over a two, three-hour period, Gino pulled out six characteristics that we had in us. Not that we wanted to be, but we had in us on that day and we came up with six. They’re the same six we’ve ever had. Never changed them. We could change them every year if we wanted. We’ve never changed them. And they were like just things like dedicated to winning. If I lost a case of motion or Trial, I was sick to my stomach. I was devastated. It kept me up at night. And Gino taught us that. From now on, Mike, for the next 30, 40 years of practicing law, you’re never going to hire somebody who doesn’t have that drive in them.
Christopher T. Anderson: Right.
Michael Morse: And I never heard that concept again. Chris, I’m just saying I didn’t make this up. Everybody talks about core values, but it changed the way my firm thinks and operates. I have 150 and 160 employees right now and I’ve gone through — we’ve had another 150-200 that’s come through the doors. And I try to make sure that they care about outrageous customer service, that they care about our people. Right?
Christopher T. Anderson: Right. Because I think a lot of people hear core values and they think these posters that have these trite sayings and they just go like, “Well I’ll pick 7, 9 and 12.” Those sound good to me. But you’re saying these really the word core. They’re not just values. The word core is important.
Michael Morse: It is. In the book we talk about, you have to have a coach. Hopefully that coach is skilled in ‘Fireproof’ language, EOS language that helps people set core values, that helps people run good meetings, that helps people hold people accountable, helps people figure an org chart, know their numbers. All these basic things that I think are now basic, which weren’t basic then, that helped me go from bringing in 5 million in fees to 55 million in fees in not a very long period of time. And in my opinion, these are the things that stop people from scaling and growing and living their best happiest lives, is just not knowing these concepts because they’re not that complicated.
Christopher T. Anderson: I agree. I want to take another break here, not because I want to stop talking, but because I want to give our sponsors a word. But when we come back, I want to shift the conversation a little bit because I think we’ve really made the point about needing this operational person, a COO, an integrator to use other language, but somebody who can help to make things actually happen. The visionary — let me just say, I’ve run into folk’s visionaries who actually are unhappy because none of their visions get done. They get sick and tired of having a vision because it never happens. It’s defeating. Those are really important. What I do want to talk about those like one of the keys to me, one of the really great takeaways from ‘Fireproof’, it would be a shame to let you go without talking about it is differentiation in marketing. And I just would like to hit that as part of what you do. As soon as we come back from our sponsors.
Lawclerk is where attorneys go to hire freelance lawyers. Whether you need a research memo or a complicated appellate brief, our network of freelance lawyers have every level of experience and expertise. Sign up is free, and there are no monthly fees. Only pay the flat fee price you set. Use rebate code Un-Billable to get a $100 Amazon gift card when you complete your next project. Learn more at lawclerk.legal.
Christopher T. Anderson: All right, we are back with Mike Morse. He is the founder of Mike Morse Law Firm and the author of ‘Fireproof’. And we’ve been talking about law firms as a business. We’ve been talking about Mike’s realization transformation into a businessowner and delegation of a lot of the operations of the business so he could continue to exert and be his genius, but one of his geniuses. And if you’ve read ‘Fireproof’ for if you will, after this podcast, which I recommend, you’ll also see that Mike is a different kind of marketer. And if you’re listening to this podcast, I know you are bombarded on a daily weekly basis in Facebook and LinkedIn and everywhere else with pitches from marketing companies. And for the most part, they all want you to do the same. All same old. Mike, I was really inspired by what you wrote about how you saw marketing a different way. Can you just talk about how you differentiated your firm and grew it based on doing marketing differently?
Michael Morse: Chapter five in our book is called ‘Cherry Garcia Beats Vanilla’. It’s a basic concept that my gut came up with when I was forced to go on TV in 2011. I was getting 70% of my cases from another law firm, and they decided to stop sending to me in one day. I had 30 employees, and we were doing really well. I was sending that lawyer $4 million a year in referral fees. And out of the blue –
Christopher T. Anderson: 70% to 0.
Michael Morse: 70% to zero overnight. And I looked at the data, realized I had to market myself, I had to advertise myself, I had saved some money. And I said, I got to go on TV to compete. And I started watching TV commercials in my state and across the country, and I realized that every single legal commercial was vanilla. It was boring, it was a commodity. They’re all doing the same thing. It was this herd mentality because — and I thought that, too. I’m like, “Well, if it’s working for him and he’s driving cars and he’s wealthy, then it’s the same old, same old”. And I said, though, there was over $30 million a year being spent in my market. And I said, nobody knows my name. I don’t have a very good phone number. How am I going to compete? I said, I have to be different. I have to do something different, or else I’m not going to compete, it won’t work. I’ll waste a lot of money.
I came up with different types of commercials. I found a very good, creative person. We have won the last three years in a row, the best 32nd spot in legal advertising from the National Trial Lawyers. And they call the Golden Gamble Awards. And we’ve won it, the 30s, the 60s, the 15s, basically, they’re funny. They make fun of myself. They make fun of personal injury lawyers. I brought my mom onto the commercials.
Christopher T. Anderson: I read that. That was awesome.
Michael Morse: I bring my dog on the commercials. All my commercials are on my YouTube channel, Mike Morse Law Firm. You can see them all and it’s inspired lawyers across the country to make their commercials better. I’ve helped people make their commercials better, and I cut through the noise. One of my goals that I set five, six, seven years ago was to be a household name in Michigan. And within a year after that goal, it happened. And if you drive in an Uber or a taxi from the airport and you say, “Who’s the best lawyer in town or who’s the biggest lawyer”, I’ve been told by my friends who asked that question that my name comes up a lot. And I’ve only been on TV for 10 years, 11 years. It’s been a while. I believe in not being boring, not being scared, in being funny. I believe in brand. I don’t do a lot of call to action commercials where you sit up there and no fee consultation or I don’t have boxing gloves, and I don’t have cheesy stuff that put people to sleep.
People know what I do for a living. When my mom and I get on there and have fun and make people laugh, I’ve had five people today ask for pictures of me, telling me how much they love my commercials, asking me where my mom is. I guarantee you, not only my competitors in my market, but across the country, that people don’t run up to them. I love your commercials. I guarantee you, because 98% of them suck. And everybody listening to this podcast, knows their market and probably cringe when they see the lawyer commercials.
Christopher T. Anderson: Right. Yeah, anybody that’s listening to this, watched television past 11:00 knows exactly what you’re talking about. Paint the picture. What’s one of the ones that you’re the most proud of?
Michael Morse: One of the ones that put us on the map, and there’s a good backstory because I didn’t want to do it, but we were trying to come up with the notion of not everything is as it seems. And there was some just for various reasons. But my creative team came up with a commercial where I’m walking out of a courthouse or out of a restaurant with a lawyer and a guy who’s getting into his car, and he drops his wallet, and I pick it up, and I’m like, “Sir, sir, you dropped your wallet.” And he just takes off in his car. I start running after him, and it was 20 degrees out. I have a briefcase in my hand, and I’m running in a suit and a tie. And all of a sudden, an ambulance goes by me, sirens and lights, and a guy in a barber shop is videotaping it. And then all of a sudden, you hear a newscaster. Attorney Mike Morse is caught chasing an ambulance. And Twitter is going crazy and all this stuff, and it’s a really beautiful commercial.
And then my billboard, my tag comes up, my Morse Law Firm, my phone number. And then at the very end of the commercial, I’m seeing giving the wallet back to the guy, “Hey, man, you forgot your wallet.” I’ve gotten hundreds of thousands of views, thousands of emails, that’s people’s favorite. It’s my favorite. It made us like nobody does that. Obviously, personal injury lawyers don’t like being called ambulance chasers. I turned it on its head. I made it funny. I made it good. Listen, when people call people ambulance chasers, it doesn’t mean that’s a bad thing, necessarily. We’re not ambulance chasing. We are helping people. We are getting people the money they deserve. That’s just one of the examples of not everything as it seems. And it worked for me. Our calls went up 30%. And every year, that was a Super Bowl commercial.
Christopher T. Anderson: Oh, wow. Yeah.
Michael Morse: Every year, we do a Super Bowl commercial. We did one called the Masked Band, where I’m black and white commercial, and I’m running around the Lone Ranger music. There’s no words, just the Lone Ranger music. That was a 62nd spot on the Super Bowl. Again, calls go up, people comment. It’s all about attention. It’s all about getting people’s attention to your brand, to your commercial.
Christopher T. Anderson: What is your brand? You keep saying that word. How should people understand that? Obviously, people shouldn’t do your brand.
Michael Morse: My brand is built around winning. My brand is built around my phone number. It’s 855 Mike wins. I win. And quite frankly, I was the first one in my market in 2011 to use that word, and now everybody in my market is using that word. Everybody’s changed their number to have the word win in it. Fifty years of winning. One of my competitors has on their billboards now wins on everything, and I was the first one to use it. I have a commercial. I have a shot of commercial sitting at this desk. I’m sitting on the edge of desk. I’m looking at a dictionary, and I’m like a lot of lawyers try to throw around the W word. They call themselves winners, but winning, that’s Mike Morse. And I open up the dictionary, and it’s clearly a dictionary, and you look at the word win, and my face is there, and I look at the camera, I’m like, “Just as I suspected.” And it was in response to all these people changing their numbers, changing their billboards, changing their taglines to copy me.
I have a lawyer across the street from me. I have a big sign of my building, black and red with my phone number. Black and red. She did the same thing, completely ripped it off. And they say it’s the form of flattery or whatever. But anyway, so that’s my brand. People know it. People know that I like to win.
Christopher T. Anderson: It’s interesting. Your messages be different, and then everybody what you’re saying is a lot of people were like, “Well, let’s be different, just like Mike.” Which then, of course means you’re going to have to figure out how to be different again, right?
Michael Morse: Well, yeah, Chris, there’s competitors in my market who say, “I’m not going to put my mom and my commercials. I’m going to just work hard, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.” And they’re just total arrogant assholes. It backfires in my opinion, it backfires. I mean, they can rip on me. They can make fun of me. They come after me because I’m the new guy in town. And all of a sudden, I have — we’re two or three times larger than any other personal injury from in the state in a short period of time.
Christopher T. Anderson: Yeah. They should have just kept sending you those referrals, and you would have stayed fat and happy, right?
Michael Morse: You said that and I didn’t say that. They’re very nice people.
Christopher T. Anderson: Sure.
Michael Morse: Listen, it was a great – all of these problems that’s a different podcast. We could talk about this later. But every problem I’ve had, every calamity, I go up 50%, 100% in happiness, in revenue, in everything that matters. Getting fired, I went on my own. Having that lawyer fire me, I went on TV, I went from 17 million to 150 million. Thank you for firing me. That’s a whole other concept, a whole other podcast. But these were the greatest things, the greatest lessons I’ve ever learned, the greatest life improvements. I wish I had the courage to have done those things on my own. Hopefully, I inspire people who hear these things when something bad happens to make the best out of it, because they’re not that bad of things.
Christopher T. Anderson: I think that’s a great place to leave this. We will. I think that the adversity, the bad things, like find the gift. It’s there. It’s always there. That will wrap up this edition of The Un-Billable Hour. I thank you to my listeners for listening. Our guest today has been Michael Morse, the founder of the Mike Morse Law Firm. 855 Mike wins. Mike, if people want to learn more about what we talked about, want to learn more about ‘Fireproof’, want to learn more about coaching, how can they get in touch with you?
Michael Morse: Fireproofmasterclass.com, 855mikewins.com. They can email me at mike@855mikewins. I’m on all the social media channels. I love connecting with people who have questions and want to talk about the book or want to have me come speak at their seminars or webinars or whatever. I love teaching, and I respond personally.
Christopher T. Anderson: Perfect. That’s wonderful. Thank you. And of course, this is Christopher T. Anderson, and I look forward to seeing you next month with another great guest as we learn more about topics that help us build a law firm business that works for you. Remember, you can subscribe to all the editions of this podcast at legaltalknetwork.com or on iTunes. Thanks for joining us and we will speak again soon.
Outro: The views expressed by the participants of this program are their own and do not represent the views of nor are they endorsed by Legal Talk Network, its officers, directors, employees, agents, representatives, shareholders, and subsidiaries. None of the content should be considered legal advice. As always, consult a lawyer. Thanks for listening to the Un-Billable Hour, the law practice advisory podcast. Join us again for the next edition right here with Legal Talk Network.
Conrad: Hey, Gee, what’s up?
Gee: Just having some lunch, Conrad.
Conrad: Hey, Gee, do you see that billboard out there?
Gee: Oh, you mean that guy out there in the gray suit?
Conrad: Yeah, the gray suit guy.
Gee: All those beautiful, rich leather-bound books in the background?
Conrad: That is exactly the one. That’s JD McGuffin at Law. He’ll fight for you.
Gee: I bet you he has got so many years of experience. Like, decades and decades. And I bet Gee that he even went to a law school.
Male 1: Are you a lawyer? Do you suffer from dull marketing and a lack of positioning in a crowded legal marketplace? Sit down with Gee and Conrad for lunch hour legal marketing on the Legal Talk Network, available wherever podcasts are found.