For the past four weeks I have been discussing the characteristics of successful law firms and introduced the following basic building blocks that successful firms typically have in place:
Partner relations, leadership, management, and partner compensation blocks have been discussed.
The fifth basic building block is planning. Successful firms have a long range business or strategic plan in place.
Based upon our experience from client engagements we have concluded that lack of focus and accountability is one of the major problems facing law firms. Often the problem is too many ideas, alternatives, and options. The result often is no action at all or actions that fail to distinguish firms from their competitors and provide them with a sustained competitive advantage. Ideas, recommendations, suggestions, etc. are of no value unless implemented.
Well designed business plans are essential for focusing your firm. However, don’t hide behind strategy and planning. Attorneys love to postpone implementation.
Failing to plan is planning to fail.
I will address each of the other building blocks in upcoming postings.
John W. Olmstead, MBA, Ph.D, CMC