How Your Community Involvement Will Scale Your Practice
Most lawyers are hungry for new clients and cases, but unfortunately many have forgotten or never learned that building a law practice requires focusing on more than just churning cases. Building a practice requires an unbridled commitment to your clients and the community.
Whether you are practicing in the Outer Banks, Cherokee or anywhere in between, it’s too easy to forget that the community of individuals surrounding your office is representative of the clients who have elected to hire you. Your community and your requisite involvement in that community will have a significant impact on how your law practice grows.
It is common practice for new lawyers or disinterested lawyers to forego the intertwined networks of community events for simple pleasantries and a firm handshake at the local watering hole. Creating a sustainable practice involves finding or creating a group of individuals in which to network within your community—and more importantly, supporting your community by networking for more than just referrals. If you take a moment and ask any well-established lawyer how he or she built their practice, their response will be networking with the goal of involvement, not referrals.
This concept of being involved in the community for the community’s sake is the foundation upon which the Bar rests. A sense of community is what causes clients to trust that lawyers are here to help.
So what’s the recipe for building and tapping into this community thing? Well, it happens to be pretty simple.
Locate or Build a Community
Start with just a few like-minded individuals chatting over beers about your community or your common interests, and celebrate what your community has to offer North Carolina. These events are great for talking about new ideas, creating new connections with people you may not know and developing a deeper understand of what your community is all about. Worst-case scenario, you drink a couple beers and make a couple new friends. If you care to try this, you may be surprised how a small, core group of genuine relationships can grow to be a defining component of your practice’s success.
If you and your like-minded cohorts have something in common, find a way to get involved in a way that matters. Look, even if you all get together to pay Pokemon Go, your group can be about getting together to walk for a cause and play Pokemon Go. Your community involvement is not going to be judged by anyone so long as it is positive and encouraging in a way that is good for the community. And, as always, taking up a cause for your community is never easy or convenient.
Don’t be Afraid of Giving
Your time is extremely important to you and to the success of your practice, but so is everyone else’s. Consider investing time to assist those that have assisted you, like friends or colleagues. When it comes to building a practice that relies on the community as its client base, think about what actions you may be able to take to give back to show your community that you are invested in their success.
Jared Pierce hung his own shingle right out of law school and has spent every minute since then discovering the joys and difficulties of chasing success. Anyone who has ever met Jared will tell you h