I heard from the lawyer who prompted my first post about the costs of opening your own law office. He said he realizes he will likely always be low man on the totem pole at the firm that employs him and says “we all need to own our own shop”.
He offers this advice to the lawyer I wrote about yesterday who also wants to go out on his own: “View the job as a temporary gig–a placeholder until he gets some of his own clients. [C]lient development comes first. The job–the boss–comes second. That mentality and your advice have made a tremendous difference in my life.”
“Marketing is everything” has always been a plank in my law-practice-building platform and it is as true for employees as it is for the self-employed.
It is also a corollary of my position that we are all self-employed.
You may currently work for a firm but if you have the ability to attract clients, you have the power. You can take your marketing skills and those clients with you to another firm or open your own.
If you work for a firm, think about things from their perspective. They can always hire attorneys to do the legal work and if that’s all you do, no matter how well you do it, they can always replace you. What they can’t replace is your ability to bring in lots of clients and keep them happy.
You either do this or you do not. If you don’t, you shouldn’t expect your employer to pay you more than is required to keep you from quitting.
They’re not going to pay you more because they like you or you’ve been with them a long time. We still live in a capitalist society. There are no unions for lawyers. Your compensation is proportionate to the value you bring to the firm.
If you want to earn more and have other benefits afforded to the partners, you have to do more. If you do, and you still aren’t compensated at the level you deserve, pick up your marbles and go play somewhere else.
Because we are all self-employed.
Marketing is easier when you know The Formula