Ellen Freedman: What You Need to Know as a Solo

In this episode, Steve Fretzin and Ellen Freedman discuss:

  • Learning and growing in all aspects of your law firm.
  • Going out on your own as a solo firm.
  • The automations and technologies that lawyers should implement in their business.
  • The best approach to hiring and the growing trend of going virtual.

Key Takeaways:

  • Your best work never happens immediately, especially when trying something new. Keep a good attitude and keep trying at your business development and networking.
  • Do your own needs analysis when looking to buy new technology for your firm. Don’t just go with what one friend said because that friend said it.
  • Budget the time, when purchasing new software or equipment, to install and train everyone on your staff. This is the best way to adequately use all the resources and features of the software you choose.
  • It takes time to do the right hire. Vet your candidates well and hire for all the necessary criteria, not just the most pressing criteria.

“The must-have technology for every lawyer, from the solo on up, is to have either a document management or a good, quality desktop search engine.” —  Ellen Freedman

Thank you to our Sponsors!

Legalese Marketing: https://legaleasemarketing.com/

Moneypenny: https://www.moneypenny.com/us/

Practice Panther: https://www.practicepanther.com/

Episode References: 

Book: Atomic Habits by James Clear – https://jamesclear.com/atomic-habits

Video: Atomic Habits – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U_nzqnXWvSo

Connect with Ellen Freedman:  

Website: https://www.freedmanlpm.com/

Email: ellen@freedmanlpm.com

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ellenfreedman/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/PA_PMA

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/freedmanconsultinginc

Connect with Steve Fretzin:

LinkedIn: Steve Fretzin

Twitter: @stevefretzin

Facebook: Fretzin, Inc.

Website: Fretzin.com

Email: Steve@Fretzin.com

Book: Legal Business Development Isn’t Rocket Science and more!

YouTube: Steve Fretzin

Call Steve directly at 847-602-6911

Show notes by Podcastologist Chelsea Taylor-Sturkie

Audio production by Turnkey Podcast Productions. You’re the expert. Your podcast will prove it.



Narrator, Steve Fretzin, Ellen Freedman, MoneyPenny, Jordan Ostroff, Practice Panther


Ellen Freedman  [00:00]

Basic to the lawyer personnel and your as I lovingly call it lawyer DNA is that risk averse, change averse. And so you know, the very first mistake they make is not looking, it’s always if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. You know, stick with what we have until God rips it out of our hands.


Narrator  [00:27]

You’re listening to be that lawyer, life changing strategies and resources for growing a successful law practice. Each episode, your host, author and lawyer coach, Steve Fretzin, we’ll take a deeper dive, helping you grow your law practice in less time with greater results. Now, here’s your host, Steve Fretzin.


Steve Fretzin  [00:49]

Hey, everybody, welcome to be that lawyer. I am Steve Fretts. And as the announcer mentioned, I hope you’re having a lovely day today. Hey, it’s another opportunity to be that lawyer someone who’s competent organized in a skilled Rainmaker. My job every single week is to help bring great gas and tips and ideas to you that’s going to help you to be more successful in your career as a lawyer, and happiness, joy, profitability, balance. It’s all there. We just have to keep working at it. Day after day, week after week. I’ve got a phenomenal guest today. smoochy who’s going to be talking to us later, guys. smoochy Are you there? By we don’t have smoochy smoochy? Is Ellen’s dog I learned how you doing Alan?


Ellen Freedman  [01:29]

Hi, I’m doing fine, Steve. Thanks for having me


Steve Fretzin  [01:32]

here. Alright, so we’re not going to refer to you as smoochies that okay,


Ellen Freedman  [01:35]

that’s okay. Yeah,


Steve Fretzin  [01:37]

I told Alan, she’s got the cutest dog name I’ve ever heard Smoochie. And my dog Rocky is behind my computer snoring right now, and you can’t hear it. But I hear it with headphones on, I can hear my dog rocky snoring. So that’s fun. We’re gonna have anyway, now we’re going to come back to in a moment. Again, you know, everybody just understand that whether you’re taking notes, you’re listening in your car, whatever the case might be. You think about ways that we can continue to develop business and Ellen Friedman, you’re the president of Friedman consulting, and you’re also a law practice manager at the Pennsylvania bar. And so you’ve got a couple of different things going on. Let’s start out with your quote of the show. And then we want to hear all about your background. But first of all, welcome, and I’m so happy that you’re here.


Ellen Freedman  [02:20]

Thank you very much. Again, I appreciate being here. Yeah,


Steve Fretzin  [02:24]

awesome. Awesome. So your quote is, whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right. That’s a Henry Ford, right?


Ellen Freedman  [02:31]

That is correct. Now, why


Steve Fretzin  [02:33]

do you why do you love that quote, so much.


Ellen Freedman  [02:34]

I like that quote so much, because people have a mind set that often limits what they achieve. There are a lot of people, you know, we have the glass half full, and the glass half empty people, the glass half empty, people have self fulfilling prophecies. If they think it’s not going to work, probably it’s not going to work. Or it’s just as straightforward quote, that expresses not,


Steve Fretzin  [03:01]

and I think business development, marketing, you know, the soft skills that lawyers aren’t taught in law school might fall into the into that category more often than we’d like to admit, because it is challenging when a lawyer is busy billing hours, dealing with family and other things to then have to do that extra stuff that they really didn’t think they’d be getting involved in. But that is turning out to be a pretty critical element to how they get the balance and they get the freedom and they get the control in their careers.


Ellen Freedman  [03:29]

Yeah, I think you approach it with an attitude, a negative attitude, well, if it was really important enough, awkward to learn that law school and so that’s not really my role. And they instead of just putting a realizing it’s part of their business, and it’s something that they need to master. They’re constantly doing it with resentment, that it’s an intrusion as to a natural part, what skills they should be developing.


Steve Fretzin  [04:00]

Yeah, and what I’m trying to do and I know there’s a lot of other coaches like yourself and around the country, working to help give methodologies systems language process to make it simple or to make it easier to do and make it sustainable versus winging it. I just know, like, if I’m going to, you know, cook up a new souffle, and I don’t know anything about making souffles I’m not going to follow recipe. I don’t know what I’m doing. I don’t know what ingredients well, it’s not going to be it’s not going to be easy. It’s not going to come out right. But there are better ways to do things. We they just have to learn what they are.


Ellen Freedman  [04:33]

They have to learn and they have to realize that just like the first time they go into court, or they draft a lease or whatever it is, their best work is not going to happen instantaneously. And some new lawyers make a you know, their first attempt at writing an article for the you know, the average reader, not a treatise, or presenting a seminar and they stink at it and they go well that’s it. I’m done. I’m not doing that. Again, but you know, they don’t do that when they do their first legal work, and it’s not perfect. And they need the right attitude. Yeah,


Steve Fretzin  [05:09]

I think that’s the attitude is sort of the beginning point. And then it’s alright, now you have a good attitude about her positive attitude about it. Now you have to go execute and make mistakes, you know, hopefully, they’re small mistakes, but make mistakes and learn. And that’s how you become a better lawyer. That’s how you become a better business developer better, you know, owner of a law firm, if that’s what you’re doing. And managing is tough, right? People are tough. So, anyway, that’s all there. So, Elon, what makes you an expert in this space? Talk us through your background. And so we understand how you came to be in, you know, as a consultant in the legal industry,


Ellen Freedman  [05:43]

wow. Well, it’s kind of an existential journey. I worked my way through college doing full time, accounting, bulking, betting, office management, purchasing, blah, blah, blah. And then through in grad school, I was doing the same thing in a variety of industries. So I was learning different industries. And then we had a new dean who pulled my fellowship, because she found out that I had a job, which many of us did. And so it was one of those pivotal points in the career, I could either try and finish my grad work, and starve to death. Or I could feed myself and work full time. So at that point, I went to school at night for computer programming causes, I knew that that would be, you know, something I needed into. And I plunged full time into the work environment and found myself at my first law firm who was looking for somebody that did accounting and computers. There you go. And so the rest is history. I, after my third day on the job, I picked up the phone from the office, I called my mom. And I said, Mom, I found my industry for life. And she met out laughing. She said, Why do you say that? I said, because no one will ever need me more than lawyer. And yeah, that was more than four decades ago, when I


Steve Fretzin  [07:14]

grow up, I have a very similar story I’m not going to talk about but that’s sort of what happened to me. I was primarily focused on entrepreneurs and working with sales teams. And once I started working with lawyers and legal industry went holy mackerel, this is this is an there’s a need here that is, you know, cannot be disputed. But it’s not all roses and rainbows, what you had mentioned to me before, you’re sort of be that lawyer tipping point, would you share


Ellen Freedman  [07:38]

that? Yeah, I will. You know, it’s very difficult operating and law firm environments. And you know, cultures vary widely from one firm to another. But for me, it was when the third firm that I had manage, broke up, because the guys couldn’t play nicely in the sandbox with each other. And it was a wonderful, firmed a wonderful job. And it was a terrible experience, not the first time. And I just said, That’s it, I am never going to let somebody else’s behavior with one another, you know, influence whether I have a job or not. And at that point, I went out on my own as a consultant, and a year later, joined the Pennsylvania bar as their practice management advisor as well. So why still wear two hats.


Steve Fretzin  [08:27]

Yeah. And I think that’s what happens to a lot of people that in me, too, it’s not that I didn’t like I had a lot of different jobs, a lot of different managers. And there’s something that I knew I was going to be an entrepreneur, I don’t know what I was going to do or when I was going to do it. But when I met a coach myself, and just fell in love with what he was doing with me, and how I was increasing sales and helping more people, and I just kind of fell into it. And you just I think once you work for yourself, if that’s something that you’re interested in, if that’s something that works within your, you know, kind of like your behavior system or your biology, the most people don’t go back to work and for someone else, once they’ve had that, that kind of that taste of that sweet pie that is, you know, entrepreneurship.


Ellen Freedman  [09:05]

Yeah, you know, the scariest part, I think, for anybody for doing it. And that goes for the lawyer to call me out during the bar hotline that are thinking of going out on their own but they’re just terrified of doing it is you know, having getting to the point where you have the faith that the phone’s going to ring in the works gonna come in, and you’re not spending all your time in panic mode. Yeah. Well, I


Steve Fretzin  [09:31]

think it’s good if you’re able to bring a few clients with you is sort of a baseline and then the other thing is, you know, make sure that you’re dealing with people like yourself, myself and others that have all the resources to make sure you get you know, the it set up and the insurance set up and the website set up and, and and that the your business development in the way that you’re going to network to kind of start things off is going to be accelerated quickly. I think if you have a six month or a year before you start seeing business come in, it’s probably problematic and see quite scary.


Ellen Freedman  [10:01]

Exactly. And though, you know, when I work with lawyers, I walk them through the process of pairing, doing the feasibility analysis, you know, discussing who’s going to be the ideal clients, how much do they start with in terms of clients, and so forth and so on. Yeah.


Steve Fretzin  [10:18]

And when we spoke, and then kind of work through what we’re going to talk about today, you know, there was just so many directions, we could have gone. And we’re probably going to hit a couple of the sort of the main ones that I think you focus on, to kind of pull out your gems, but thinking about technology, what are some of the top mistakes lawyers make with technology? And then, you know, let’s, let’s start with that. And then we’ll move to the kind of what are some potential solutions you see there?


Ellen Freedman  [10:44]

Okay. Well, you know, basic to the lawyer personality, or as I lovingly call it, lawyer DNA is that risk averse, change averse. And so, you know, the very first mistake they make is not looking, it’s always if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, you know, stick with what we have, until God rips it out of our hands. And we can now so that when lawyers pick new technology, when they do take the plunge, they don’t do sufficient due diligence, they will just buy something because their body at another farm says, oh, yeah, this is the greatest thing since sliced bread, if they don’t do their own needs analysis to see if there are any deal breaker things that they have to have. Just for example, you don’t buy a time and billing system, in the absence of saying, Do we have any special reports or things that we have to do for our clients? That we have to make sure that this new software will do? It’s like they buy it? And then they find out? Oh, my God, it doesn’t do task based billing, what am I gonna do with my institutional client, you know, that. So, you know, they need to properly do their needs assessment, their due diligence, they also the second biggest mistake is once they buy something, they don’t take the time to learn it. They don’t adequately budget, the time, the minute the installation, and the mandatory minimum training is over. Every staff person has to be at full productivity, there’s no time to get back away with the software. And training is always use it or lose it. So if they don’t get to use the features they’ve been shut on right away, they’re not going to retain the knowledge of how to use it. They don’t adequately allocate time and money to retrain. Because even the smartest people will only retain about 40% of what they’ve been trained in. Yeah. And so consequently, lawyers don’t use anything but a smattering of any of the software and tools that they buy.


Steve Fretzin  [13:01]

Yeah, that are they are there tools out there that they don’t know exist. And that would would help take things to another level or make their life much easier, more efficient, but they just don’t they haven’t taken the time to either research it or identify it as as a potential, you know, need or timesaver?


Ellen Freedman  [13:17]

Yes, absolutely. And especially, I don’t know about, you know, your experience, but demographically in Pennsylvania, 63% of our attorneys are solo and small firms that have IT people they love or don’t even have as smattering of an office manager. And so they’ve ever been any body that they can delegate, standing on top of and bringing just the top of the crane to them for evaluation or consideration. And that’s not something that they’re willing to spend time doing in that it’s not a space, they’re comfortable. Even operating in well, technology.


Steve Fretzin  [13:56]

I mean, I think for me, I’m like totally guilty as charged on. You know, I love technology, I get excited about technology, some of it hits me right away, and I can dive in and use it right away. Others are more complex, like I’m on law, Maddox and I don’t think I could hand I’m not I’m not a lawyer, but that but I love LA Maddix because it has automated so many different parts of my life in my business. And I can then share that, you know, with with lawyers, but without having my sponsor and friend legalese marketing in my corner, helping me with those automations setting them up for me training me really spending that time to force it on me a little bit because I need that aggression of force, because otherwise I’m gonna put it to the back of the back of the bus or whatever, and then it’s not going to get utilized properly. So I think getting that assistance is really, really critical in that training.


Ellen Freedman  [14:49]

Yes, yeah. be so willing to spend the dollars to Yeah,


Steve Fretzin  [14:55]

and so like in your experience, what are some of the latest automations and technologies that you’re seeing that you know, handing to your clients, because they’re just they’re just the best thing since sliced bread and Earl from an earlier statement you made?


Ellen Freedman  [15:10]

Well, you’re not what’s not so much that it’s new things, but okay, the the must have technologies for every lawyer and from Salalah. Why not, is to have number one either just either document management or a good quality desktop search engine, so that they can do Google type searches for their existing intellectual property and efficiently find and reuse what they have created, you know, well organized and at their fingertips. It also I think that every single firm should be using practice management software on and that can be something as simple for a soul or or two man firm with one staff member, you could be using Office 365, and one dry and, and get the equivalent with the proper setup of a practice management package. You know, it’s all in there, but getting themselves to the point where everything, it’s not about thinking, Oh, I have to open this and that or the other. It’s about having enough integration between what you’ve got that you’re just seamlessly going from task to task and everything’s a click away. Yeah.


Steve Fretzin  [16:37]

And shout out to practice Panther, one of our one of our few sponsors, and, you know, continue to put out a great product, helping lawyers to automate the way that they’re running their firms.


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Steve Fretzin  [17:25]

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Jordan Ostroff  [17:56]

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Steve Fretzin  [18:16]

Outside of the practice management, like the document management that are there any other automations that you that just like I and I can give some examples because I’m using a bunch of them. But any anything else that jumps out is like a no brainer to save time.


Ellen Freedman  [18:30]

Absolutely. At this point, if firms are still dealing with paper files instead of digital files, you know, not only is it inefficient, not only is it Poor risk, you know disaster recovery, but probably they can’t even meet their ethical requirements, at least in Pennsylvania for safeguard safeguarding client property and properly backing it up. Okay. And then voice to text, I think has gotten to the point where that, you know, lawyer should be using that for everything from sending the text to somebody to sending an email to somebody to recording their time in their practice management, and so forth and so on. Yet, people are, you know, are not recognizing that native voice recognition has gone, you know, very far with the exception of my voice that apparently no automation recognizes I must sound like brand Drescher to it because nothing ever works, whether it I’m talking to Google or I’m talking to, you didn’t know, a word or whatever it might be. But, you know, I see all the people around me that just, you know, hold the fire under their lips and say, Tell me when did this happen or is this really true or Whatever it might be. Yeah. So yeah, voice recognition is okay.


Steve Fretzin  [20:06]

Yeah, and the one that’s been a game changer for me and the clients that I introduce it to has been the the auto schedulers. So the Calendly acuity. And, again, I have it incorporated with law Maddox again, so that it goes to my website, it’s integrated into schedule people, they can fill out forms, I mean, it doesn’t always work perfectly. But most of the time, those automations are just saving me, you know, maybe an hour a day. And if you do that over a year, you can imagine how much money that represents in either, you know, marketing biz dev time or billable hours, not going back and forth with people. That’s one. Do you also do? Have you ever heard of the remarkable to do you? Do you do do that at all one of these tablets?


Ellen Freedman  [20:45]

Oh, geez, I did, I actually did that one notes first came out. Okay, I tested about five of them. Okay. And, you know, I like the ease of the recording notes and keeping them digitally in terms of writing handwriting to text that never worked


Steve Fretzin  [21:05]

very well, like your voice, your handwriting is such that it’s not going to pick it up. I don’t really use that because my handwriting is absolute trash, I’ve got the lefty curse on that. But what I do is a I have zero paper, my office is completely paper free, everything is then backed up in Dropbox. But let’s say that I need to email all the notes from this conversation, I need to email it as to make it a to do, I can just write from here, email this over. And then it’s it now it’s in my to do box is an email or I can take a PDF, put it here and then tighten and write over the PDF. Like I’ve got a meeting today with six people that I’m in a group with. And I’m going to just put it all on my tablet, and it does feel like paper. So I keep saying I should get some kind of sponsorship from remarkable too, but it’s not going to happen. But I absolutely love it. And I love the efficiency of it. So some really good really good tech tips there. Let’s move on to another important thing, and this keeps coming up with how busy lawyers are, that they may be in a position where they need to hire. And I think hiring today is sort of a mixed bag. On one hand, it’s really tough to find a good fit on the other hand, and then with you know whether it’s the great resignation, the recession, whatever it might be tough to find good help. But what are your thoughts on on hiring? And like either? What’s the right time to hire or? And then if you agree that it is, how do you do that an effective way to actually bring in the right person?


Ellen Freedman  [22:33]

Who are not? That’s a big question. So timing wise, I find there’s two mindsets and law firms when it comes to hiring of attorneys. The first are the firm’s that are very risk averse and conservative. And they do not want to hire somebody until they are positive, they have enough work to fill their plate. And so they will get themselves into a tizzy where their border of all malpractice, doing taking on more and more work until they finally feel that okay, now I have time to hire. The problem with that approach is, of course, that they’re too busy to do a good job of hiring because they can’t devote the proper amount of time to vetting the candidates. Yeah, you know, the other side are those that have faith that if they have the available hands, they will be able to then spend the time that they’ve Sung and delegate the work to, they can then turn their attention to putting more work in the pipeline, which then will help them fill that person’s plate and fill their pipeline their plate as well. So you know, I recommend more of the second than the first because it takes time to do the right hire. And that’s one of the areas where attorneys don’t do well is they don’t vet candidates, well, they hire for one set of criteria, for example, skills, abilities, grade point average, where you order the kois where you law review where you missed that and the other. And those are not solid indicators of success. They’re their indicators that people are smart and that people know the Nova law it from a technical perspective, but it doesn’t necessarily mean they apply it well. It doesn’t necessarily mean they’re going to be a good fit. So people may get hired because they’ve done so many trials or they’ve done so many closings or whatever, and their grade point average in the right school. But what they ultimately get fired for are habits and behaviors, bad habits, bad behaviors and bad fit to the culture. Yeah, and those are things that fall under the category of emotional intelligence screening, which a lot of lawyers still think is is voodoo, right? They know don’t even recognize what corporate America has known for a couple of decades already, that emotional intelligence really is everything in terms of indicators for success. So, you know, they need to properly screen and ask the right questions. And that’s a learning curve. You know, I’ve taught many lawyers and even some judges who couldn’t hold on to clerks because they kept hiring rule and didn’t why, you know, in terms of today’s marketplace, it’s very difficult. And lawyers need to understand that they have to get out of the traditional mindset, that it is a full time knee in the seat position on somebody who is going to be able to drive to your office every day, if they can get rid of some of those arbitrary boundaries in their mind. And think in terms of alternate work schedules, fractional work schedules, you know, not necessarily to the traditional partnership track, you know, there are a lot of terrific people out there that can do what they need to do, they just may not be all rolled up in one person who’s available full time to show up physically every day.


Steve Fretzin  [26:26]

Right, that virtual model is really taking off nationally to because there are attorneys that want to work part time, they want to work full time, they may be in an area like intellectual property where it doesn’t matter where they’re situated. It’s a national scope. And there’s people building law firms, virtual law firms like crazy right now. And it really works. And the overhead is significantly lower, and the results can be great. So it’s it the one of the things I want to just mention about about screening and hiring too. And I tried to do that I did this with my marketing guy that I have now he’s out of Bogota, Colombia, so 100% virtual and in another country, and I had him, you know, from marketing perspective, you know, create a meme for me. So I sent them a video of my cat, Tootsie. And I said, here’s a little video I took of Tootsie doing something, and I kind of gave some direction, but I said, Can you create a meme here, and he came back with something that was much better than I had expected. And so that’s another thing you may want to consider when no emotional intelligence, you know, in all the different factors that you look for an attorney, maybe give them a small project to work them on that you can pay them for it, but see how it comes out. See, how did they do it on time? Did they give you excuses? You know, see what’s what’s lying ahead. By doing something like that. It’s just another option.


Ellen Freedman  [27:44]

I agree with I agree with that 100% and wonderful recruiters


Steve Fretzin  [27:47]

Elon is that something people should be looking for is is to leverage a solid recruiter.


Ellen Freedman  [27:53]

While you said it in the solid recruiter, and that that I find that most recruiters don’t have the ethics that I require. I make referrals, okay. And by that, I mean, that thing only make money when a body moves from point A to point B. And so sometimes they over represent or misrepresent the job to the candidate and the candidate to the firm in order to close the deal. And they also the least reputable of them in Wilk, always routinely check back in six months, we are you still happy? Because I know about this position. And if you know of anyone, they don’t say, you


Steve Fretzin  [28:45]

know, anyone just like you. Even looks like human right? You can’t believe it. Yeah, as the same facial features.


Ellen Freedman  [28:53]

Yeah. So they can, you can, I have narrowed my world of recommendations of Pennsylvania, down to a couple of recruiters on what I call the east coast of PA and a couple on the west coast to PA and when I give their names, I say these are the two I considered non scum recruiters. Generally, but the phrase that


Steve Fretzin  [29:17]

I mean, I’ll tell you from my experience is I have to have non scum, if you will, recruiters in my corner, because I think the problem with referring a recruiter is that it represents you. And if you’re a rep if you’re sending someone to a recruiter, and they have a bad experience that’s going to come back to haunt you as the referring party. So I’m continually talking with recruiters nationally, to find the ones that I feel are not only the most honorable, but also really care about the individuals that they represent. And they’re going to make their best efforts to place them in the right in the right firm. And that that really, you know, is a huge part of you know what I think is important, but most attorneys are fearful of recruiters not just because of what you talked about. But also, you know, it’s just a significant fee, you know, if it’s 20 to 30% of a salary, I mean, that’s a really big fee. And I don’t know that they value that, you know, that return on investment. And I think for the right recruiter, it’s absolutely a good investment to do that, versus you spending all your time, your billable time, you know, recruiting, which you’re not going to do a good job with. But again, I think that’s why you have to really research and that the recruiter, if you’re going to spend that kind of money,


Ellen Freedman  [30:31]

well, and especially, you know, they do have their place, if you’re looking for work in a Detroit capture people relocating from one state to another, you know, people that are ready to make a leap out of a big firm, it’s very hard to identify those people, but they’ll self identified recruiters, and you may never catch their eye with an ad. If they’re already working with their go recruiter. So, you know, they have their place, and they definitely have value. I just, you know, have to be very, very careful about who I’d recommend. Yeah,


Steve Fretzin  [31:09]

I’m with you on that. And I appreciate that, Ellen, let’s wrap things up with your game changing book, which has been mentioned on the show a couple of times. So maybe something people have dragged their feet to buy. And it may be time to actually go out and pick up this book. Tomic habits. So talk about that for a moment. What Why is that such a great book for lawyers?


Ellen Freedman  [31:27]

Okay, well, I have a mantra that I have ended, and included in every seminar that I presented, which is many over, you know, for decades, as you can imagine. And, and that is that big, that real change in a law firm is never about making some giant leap forward. It is always about taking continual baby steps in the right direction, small changes small little incremental changes that build tremendously over time. And when I came across that book, and they were talking literally about atomic changes, meaning these little microscopic changes that over time can yield tremendous, unprecedented results. And some there was something that matched what I’ve been on the soapbox, thinking I was the only one who knew this great secret now. You know, I’d already put it in words. So a lot of times when people hear things that might immediately resonate, but if they share it from numbers of different sources, all of a sudden they get it. Yeah. And so I like to recommend it because it reinforces something that’s very basic to what I try and change the terms, which is change comes in very small steps.


Steve Fretzin  [32:55]

Yeah, and that’s James clear breath. Is the who’s who says that clear? It’s clear. Okay. Okay. Yeah, and I mentioned you before, and people have heard me talking about this, you know, I highly recommend buying the book because you can read it, you can annotate in it, you can really own it and go back to it multiple times. The other backup if you’re not going to ever read a book is there’s a great video on YouTube. If you just go into YouTube and type in atomic habits, I think it’s 30 to 40 minutes, but it really breaks the book down into small pieces, which is ironic because you know, that’s what the books about, you know, breaking things down into small pieces. Before we wrap up, as well Alan, I just want to take a moment to thank our sponsors. We’ve got legalese who was mentioned on the show today acting as your outsourced cmo and outsourced you know trainer for software, money Penny, who’s doing the virtual reception, and instant live response on your website. And of course, we mentioned practice Panther as a top notch case management software to help get organized with your law firm. Elon, thank you so much for being on the show. This was just fantastic. And I’m so happy we met and that we’re, you know, slowly becoming friends. I hope we can keep doing more together. If people want to get in touch with you what’s the best way to reach out?


Ellen Freedman  [34:07]

The best way to reach out is by email. My email address is Alan at a Freedman fr EE D ma n l like law P like practice em like management.com ln at Friedman LP m.com


Steve Fretzin  [34:23]

Yeah, we’ll throw that in the show notes as well. So we make sure everybody has that. But just thank you so much. I appreciate it. And this just sharing your wisdom really wonderful.


Ellen Freedman  [34:31]

Thank you so much. And I will tell you that smoochy enjoyed the show tremendous


Steve Fretzin  [34:36]

Yes. And I saw smoochy was was partying with who is that with the mango? Oh shout out. Yeah, go with smoochy partying in the background. It was very distracting by the way and I don’t mean that in a negative way. I always enjoy watching animals, you know, play around and have a good time. So thanks for the thanks for the background entertainment for me. Hey, everybody, thank you for spending some time with Alan and I today you know again another opportunity to really work on your business on your practice versus working in it. And you know, any tip and idea that you can get from this show that’s going to help you to be that lawyer, the better and that’s someone who’s competent, organized and a skilled Rainmaker. Take care everybody be safe be well, we’ll talk again soon.


Narrator  [35:21]

Thanks for listening to be that lawyer, life changing strategies and resources for growing a successful law practice. Visit Steve’s website for ittsan.com For additional information, and to stay up to date on the latest legal business development and marketing trends. For more information and important links about today’s episode, check out today’s show notes