Planning To Run A Law Practice
The California Desert Trial Academy educates, trains, and develops students with an emphasis on teaching them the practice of law, rather than just the knowledge of law. This includes teaching skills that enable graduates to start their own firm if they should choose this avenue of practicing law over working for a firm, government agency, or public interest organization. The first step in running your own law practice is to formulate a business plan.
Knowledge of both hard and soft skills is critical to the practice of law. Anyone starting his or her own legal practice must have some minimal notion of how to run a business. The alternative is a law firm that operates “in the red” – loses money. Even the most professionally successful law firm will go out of business if not managed efficiently and profitably.
Knowing the law and having good technical skills does not guarantee success. Few law schools offer courses in the basics of law practice administration as core requirements. The California Desert Trial Academy’s unique learning platform places emphasis on learning soft skills, utilizing internships, and connecting with mentors to develop the practical experience to help springboard graduates immediately into working as attorney-advocates and achieve success.
Most law school curricula are designed to facilitate students passing the bar exam, rather than transitioning into a thriving business enterprise. These law schools tend to teach students how to be knowledgeable lawyers, but not how to succeed as lawyers.
Poor law firm management can cause professional issues such as malpractice; financial issues such as low profits, lost revenues, and unchecked expenses; and personnel issues, such as high turnover, low morale, and poor productivity.
Formulating a business plan is the first critical step in planning your law practice.
A thoughtful and well-written business plan should formulate and identify both short-term and long-term goals while providing clear means by which these objectives will be achieved. The business plan acts as the blueprint for your proposed practice. It’s a roadmap where the destinations are constantly in flux, continually changing. It also acts as a reminder of where you want to go as an attorney-advocate.
The time expended into considering and drafting a business plan is as important as the plan itself.
It’s important to experience the process of planning. This experience will prove useful when you must revise or update the business plan, which should be reviewed annually for the life of the firm.
Regularly re-evaluating your business plan ensures that your goals remain in focus, or, more importantly, takes into consideration goals that have changed. As the practice evolves, the firm’s original objectives probably will, in fact, change. The firm’s practice areas may change or expand. Business owners must possess the ability to adapt to changing circumstances, especially to meet the needs of clients.
The California Desert Trial Academy (CDTA) is a 21st Century law school tailored to meet the needs of working people. Any lawyer must study and know the law. We believe that practical experience in tandem with legal knowledge is the best road to a successful, rewarding, and prosperous legal career. At CDTA, we train, educate, and develop students to be exceptional attorneys and trial advocates. Call us today at (760) 342-0900 or find out more online here.