In this episode, Steve Fretzin and Jay McAllister discuss:
- The value of technology used in the proper context.
- Coming to the table as a student in all that you do.
- Working smarter, not just harder, through the use of technology.
- What separates adequate practices from flourishing firms.
- The more you illuminate your sphere of knowledge, the more you will learn that you do not know.
- Understanding the right tools for your firm and how they all work together is key to creating an ideal technology ecosystem for your firm.
- If you don’t embrace technology, you are limiting the reach of your firm and the reach of your growth.
- Business comes as a result of relationships.
“All the tools, in their base state, are essentially useless. It’s only understanding the business outcomes that are required, and then pairing that with the proper optimization and setup of the tools, as well as ongoing support and training, that’s what makes it critical.” — Jay McAllister
Connect with Jay McAllister:
Thank you to our Sponsors!
Legalese Marketing: https://legaleasemarketing.com/
Connect with Steve Fretzin:
LinkedIn: Steve Fretzin
Facebook: Fretzin, Inc.
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.
technology, lawyer, business, firm, people, law firm, attorneys, jay, legal, clients, critical, practice, track, legalese, understanding, tools, collect, intake, practice management system, realizing
Jay McAllister, Narrator, Steve Fretzin, Jordan Ostroff
Jay McAllister [00:00]
All the tools in their base state, they’re essentially useless. It’s only understanding the business outcomes that are required. And then pairing that with the proper optimization and setup of the tools as well as ongoing support and training for that. That’s what makes it critical.
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, will 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 [00:41]
Hey everybody, welcome to be that lawyer. I hope you’re having a lovely day. Listen, it’s all about being that lawyer. And as you know, we are constantly trying to figure out great guests and great topics and great ideas to help you be that lawyer or someone who’s competent, organized in a skilled Rainmaker. We’re just going to jump into it today. There’s no stalling necessary here. And before I introduce my guest and friend Jay, I do want to mention that I’ve got sponsors and they’re awesome and they are money Penny and legalese legalese marketing so money penny for my website, chatbot live chat, I should say. And also for reception, you know, if you’re looking for some reception and replace what you have, you’re paying too much. Or maybe your intake is terrible. Money, Penny can help and then legalese. newsletters, social media, websites, search engine optimization, they can help you with law, Maddox. They are a powerhouse of legal marketing. So checkout, legalese, and Jay was kind enough to submit a quote that he does not remember sending to me. And the quote is, the universe is under no obligation to make sense to you. And of course, that’s our fate, a famous Neil deGrasse Tyson, who removed our lovable Pluto from, from our weather from our solar system is that well,
Jay McAllister [01:56]
yeah, no, no more Pluto. So wonderful lover out there. You know, all I can do is offer my condolences. We’ve got to move on, and there’s bigger things we have to take care of.
Steve Fretzin [02:06]
That’s it. That’s it. Jay McAllister is the founder and CEO of Paragon technology. He’s a friend of mine. He’s a big shot improvisers we love shout out to pro visors. And, Jay, thanks so much for coming on the show. This is I think your second time, right?
Jay McAllister [02:22]
Round two. And it’s I mean, don’t even think maybe because this is just starting off Monday morning, I get to have fun hanging out with a buddy and learn something from you and maybe drop a nugget or two. So this is this, um, game.
Steve Fretzin [02:33]
Okay, well, let’s have some fun together. And hopefully everybody’s with us on this. Do me a solid and just give a little bit Reader’s Digest on your background, because most people don’t realize what a go getter you are and how hungry you are to really impact the legal community. And I’m an old old dude, and you’re young up and comer. So take us back.
Jay McAllister [02:53]
It all starts with the term terrible twos. The terrible twos started when I was two years old. And as my mother frequently tells me, they never ended. That was it. You’ve been terrible ever since. You never read did you know I was like the ultimate kid that you don’t want to have curious, inquisitive to the extent that I got myself in a lot of trouble just taking apart remote controls at home, not knowing how to put them back together. Yeah, splashing in puddles with my new shoes. Because I wanted to see I wanted to test I wanted to verify. And I did that with everything. Well, what happens if I take the sharpie and write on the brand new tile in the home? True story, and it never came out? Oh, wow. It never comes out. So I was I was always my nature. And I remember being I got interested in technology at a really young age, probably six or seven years old. We used to play these Gameboy Advance systems at school and Pokemon was the game we played on those. So that was a direct reflection of our street credibility. It’s like, yeah, you’re doing well in poker. In Pokemon. You’re, that’s that’s our social currency. I remember finding out a way to modify the code in the game so that I could gain an advantage and get more Pokemon quicker than any of my friends could. So they naturally wanted to partake in the same things. And one of my friends asked me if I could help him with his game and do the same modifications. And that was a lightbulb moment for me that, Oh, my God, I can. This is a valuable skill set, having this technology experience that I can monetize that people are willing to pay. So shortly after my mother’s getting phone calls, about you know, your son may be taking my son’s money, and he’s giving, I think he’s giving it to him, and he’s not eating his lunch. He’s but he has all the He keeps talking about this Pokeyman thing. And so my mom shut it down. But that was kind of my just track record through from as far back as I can remember. I remember being in high school and I was taking a 3d modeling class. And I was designing some, it was a flag simulation we had when the flag was waving, and the teacher had looked over and saw what I was doing. And he actually asked me to teach him how to do that. And that was going to become the new syllabus for the class or the new curriculum, I should say for the class. And it’s just so over time, I was realizing that technology, using the proper context is one valuable, people are willing to part with their money in order to embrace it. And also that you can solve complex challenges for individuals, make life better create better experiences by using technology.
Steve Fretzin [05:26]
And then then how does that flip into the legal space? Because it sounds like what you’re doing and what you’ve done, could really be used for anybody. So how did you? Are you like me? Kind of found it by accident? Or was there another way that you came across legal? Yeah, I
Jay McAllister [05:40]
just got a lot of speeding tickets growing up. So this would be a great market to try this, this this experiment with. And you know, really just, I wind up getting my first law firm. And this lawyer was just critical in showing me the ropes and allowing me to practice on his organization and find out what works, what didn’t what things were valuable. And I remember one time him asking me about something was off with his the way his spreadsheet that he had at the time for me, he was using this spreadsheet to handle trust accounting, I’m sorry, trust account reconciliation. And he’s got his QuickBooks up on one screen, I remember, he’s got only one monitor that QuickBooks up on one side of the screen. He’s got his practice management system. He’s got a spreadsheet, and he’s reconciling and make sure the balances are correct. And the trust account. Remember, he asked me a question about the spreadsheet. And he said, this term trust account, he says, You know what a trust account is right. I said, Actually, no, sir. I have no idea what a trust account is. And he said, so here’s the problem. Right now you’d like to build this technology practice? I’m assuming you’d like to work with more lawyers. But this is something this is a term that’s critical to how we operate. Do you know what IoT is? No, sir, I don’t because these are intertwined. This is critical to what we do. How do you ever think you’ll gain credibility, enough that someone will want to hire you to handle their entire livelihood, you know, the technology is the lifeblood of most of our practices. And there’s simple things that you don’t know about it. So he began to take me under his wing and just, he would explain the issues and the concerns and all of the scenarios that happen in a legal context and explain to me what those things were. And I began to get really fascinated it. I just wanted to learn more my curiosity, my inquisitiveness, it allowed me to dive deeper ask really good questions. And the thing that I think suited me best, is just coming to the table as a student, you know, at this time, I was a young business owner, this is in my second year of business of just I’m getting ready to I’m celebrating my ninth year coming up here in May. And, you know, although there’s this idea that’s pushed nowadays that when we enter into a professional setting, we must present ourselves as we are in our finished state as if we were in our finished state. Meaning there’s nothing else that there that I can learn out there, I have all of the information I need to know. And I’m a professional? Well, I think by understanding that I don’t have all the information out there that there’s much more information that’s out there that I don’t know. And maybe even more importantly, there will always be more, the more I illuminate my sphere of knowledge, the more it actually illuminates that there’s more things that I don’t know. And just being understanding of that, and being coming to the table willing to learn, I think it what I’ve noticed is that people like to help others and they like to feel like they’re giving them something of value that they could not necessarily attain without them. So gave him the ability to feel good about helping me and grow my practice and give me more knowledge that I’d be able to then apply to new business acquisition. And that’s exactly what happened. Yeah.
Steve Fretzin [08:42]
Very cool. Very cool. And yeah, I think that’s the thing, we have to keep learning not only about technology, but we have to customize it to the legal space, because there’s so many intricacies whether it’s helping them with business development, technology, marketing, that if you don’t have experience, you have to gain it quickly. I remember years ago, someone was told me there a legal marketing agency, and that they do websites for law firms, and he wouldn’t give me any law firms he worked with, he wouldn’t show me any examples. And it was clear that he had really not done anything in the legal space. But he was trying to get into it, but it kind of lied to me. So I, I was turned off about the whole thing. And it really made him unrecoverable, because, you know, I can’t turn someone over to a law firm that does technology, websites, anything, if they don’t have the knowledge, at least the baseline knowledge and experience of working with some others. And I know you got to start somewhere. But you know, it certainly is easier to introduce someone that is either a specialist or that has experience working with 510 20 law firms than someone who’s you know, flat out, uh, you know, never done it before. That’s definitely a trickier space to be.
Jay McAllister [09:45]
Right. And I think the most important thing there is that even if there are no law firm, because I remember back in the day when I had just his sole firm and he was a solo practitioner. I remember my first big engagement with a law firm. This is a five person firm. I’m sorry a five I have attorney firm yet a couple of support staff as well. So this is a big deal. Yeah. You know, and I remember them asking me, Hey, we’d like to see some references as most attorneys there. I know, Steve, you did a a, an education moment for us the other week improvisers and we talked about disc, I listened to you. I know, a lot of attorneys can fall within that. They need data, I think was that the see?
Steve Fretzin [10:23]
Yeah, compliant the data, they’re looking, they’re safe, secure. They need it’s analytical, they need information, risk averse, etc.
Jay McAllister [10:32]
Right. So the fact that I was asked for references, and what kind of ROI is have you been able to achieve for your other clients? That’s something that’s fairly standard, it’s to be expected. And what I did is rather than the individual that you, you spoke about saying, oh, you know, we do all this work with all these law firms, we’ve got 10 of them, you know, much larger than you, what I said is that, you know, I’m going to be honest with you, I have one firm that I’m working with. Now, that’s a law firm in the sense that you’re talking about, yeah, these are things we’re doing for them, but also, understanding the legal profession based on the knowledge that I gained by working with this individual saying, I know the collections is really important for you, as a lawyer, look at this client here. This is an accounting firm, we handle collections within their firm, we’ve put some automations in place that allow them to collect faster and with less effort. You know, I understand that tracking the time that you spend on your individual matters in a legal context is very important. Well, look at this firm over here, this is a medical practice, and they need to track their time because they have ethical standards that they’re imposed on that that are imposed on them that they have to deliver to their board, and look at what software program we put in place in order to track their time. Also showing that I have the experience, and I have I know what things are important, I can anticipate some of the challenges that you may experience. So that’s what gives me then the right to win in that scenario. You know, when another individual comes, who’s just a generalist, and is looking to help them with their technology needs, they’re not necessarily going to be able to assess or anticipate what issues and challenges that lawyer may face. And given the fact that I’ve done so much research, I had a pretty good idea of what kind of things that they may be facing. And it ended up ultimately winning me the client, right.
Steve Fretzin [12:19]
And so let’s get into the weeds then on the subject, which is, you know, how do busy and successful lawyers leverage technology to live a better lifestyle, because that’s the that’s sort of the golden goose for a lawyer or running his own firm or her own firm, or even a lawyer that is working at a firm, you know, that could possibly leverage some technology. But what’s what are you working? Seeing? What are you seeing out there that they’re either that they’re struggling with? And then how are you flipping that switch?
Jay McAllister [12:46]
Well, I think that’s the main part is something you just highlighted there, which is realizing that you’re struggling, I call it drowning in my practice, because you’ll see in many providers meetings, I know, you’ve seen me in just social media appearances, I have a life vest that I like to wear, because I like to reinforce the concept that many attorneys do not know that they’re drowning, it is not normal to be at your office in front of your desk for 12 hours a day, day in day out six days a week, that’s not normal, you know, there’s a better way to do it. The old adage of just working harder. That’s, that’s, that’s a belongs in the past, there’s technology that we can all leverage to extend our capabilities that will allow us to be more effective, more impactful, and is perfectly designed for those out there who want to do those things and spend less time working but are not willing to take a pay cut. So just realizing that there’s a better way to do that. There’s a better way to be a father, that’s who’s a lawyer, and still be able to go see your little leagues, your kids Little League baseball games, or to actually have time to sit down and eat dinner with your spouse. I mean, these are things that are possible. Yeah,
Jordan Ostroff [13:56]
legalese marketing is not your traditional marketing vendor. Instead, we’re a true fractional cmo that helps you save time and spend your money the right way to build the practice of your dreams. We help through the entire process, from customizing your intake system to driving leads, and even getting more reviews afterwards, schedule your free call at legalese marketing.com.
Hi, I’m Steph from Moneypenny. We’re trusted by leading law firms and attorneys to answer calls virtually professionally and brilliantly. Our high tech receptionist service enables us to route calls to your team’s wherever they’re working, and even recognize and prioritize calls based on whether they’re a repeat caller, a new client or a VIP. Claim your exclusive partner rates and Free Trial by quoting Fretzin Today,
Steve Fretzin [14:46]
without getting too technical. Jay, what are what are one or two examples that you’ve seen where when someone put a piece of technology that you’ve helped them with in place where it’s made that kind of change that kind of
Jay McAllister [14:58]
shift? Being a lawyer, having someone operate your calendar, whether it be an administrative assistant, someone who’s in your support staff, or whether it be you, you’re scheduling meetings, lunches, you should be doing the business development, if you’re not, I’ve got a friend, his name is Steve Fretzin, he can help you out with that. But if you are doing business development, naturally, you’re going to have these events that you need to attend whether they be virtual or in person, you’ll need time to have intake sessions with your clients where you can ask them the critical questions and get the necessary inputs to figure out whether they have a case or not. These are all things that need to be scheduled. But what we found is that we did a study back in 2020, right interviewed 100 And something lawyers in the Chicago area alone. And what we found is that most of them had indicated that they’re spending at least one hour per meeting that they’re scheduling meeting, the person saying, Hey, I’d like to schedule a meeting and email there, well, you have to read that email, then you have to think of your response and write that out. And you have to look at your calendar and find times that you’re available. And you have to put those times in the email, then you send it, then the person tells you, yes, I’ll take that time. But they took two days to respond. Well, now that time slot is taken. So now you go back to your calendar, that process of scheduling meetings, it’s become much easier. There’s tools out there like free busy. There’s tools out there, like Calendly, there’s there’s actually tools built into legal practice management systems that integrate so that way there’s a seamless connection between the software that a firm is already using. Yeah, but basically, we just look at it as let’s find the best way to make it to make a technology ecosystem happen. Yep, ecosystem is is essentially an environment where we minimize the amount of tools that are in use, we want as few as possible, because it’s there’s less systems and platforms to jump back and forth between. But also something that’s easy to use intuitive doesn’t require a ton of training and onboarding, because if there’s a system that we want to put in place, but it’s going to take 30 hours per lawyer in your firm to get up to speed with it won’t be a successful implementation. Yeah, I mean,
Steve Fretzin [17:05]
I found that I’m using acuity which is like Calendly. And I decide what times are open and available for different kinds of meetings and podcasts and whatever. And also the intake of the form that gets filled out whether it’s a new prospective client, whether it’s someone networking, whether it’s a podcast interview, people are now becoming very comfortable with this new system of not going back and forth, but just filling out a form and just finding a date on someone’s calendar, entering it in, everything gets automated to the calendar. So that’s, for me, just personally, I would put it in a half an hour to an hour a day, every day that I’m saving, because I’ve automated the scheduling. And by the way, no one’s pushing back. I mean, I’m maybe maybe there’s one or two old school people that I don’t do it that way. And can we just talk? You know, yeah, if I’ve got you on the phone, let’s just figure it out and get on the calendar while we’re on the phone. But I think that that one, automation has been huge for me. Is there one for lawyers that helps on the on the backside, meaning, maybe how they work better internally with communication with their people, or how they’re how they’re just, you know, internally? Getting things done in less time?
Jay McAllister [18:16]
Yeah, so So you’re referring to an LP ms illegal practice management system, there are hundreds of options out there, it’s overwhelming. And that’s what we find a lot of times becomes the issue. firms typically are not on the correct LP Ms. For their particular use case. They’ll hear Hey, my buddies using Clio, or they’ll say, hey, my buddy’s using Zola suite, or cosmetics or time matters or rocket Mater. There’s so many options out there, you know, and it can be overwhelming. So they typically will law firms or not technology firms. So they’ll either task the managing partner, or someone in the technology committee with let’s find a platform that’s suitable. And typically, that process is time consuming on its own. And they’re missing key inputs required in order to make the right decision for the firm. How large is the firm? What are the firm’s plans for expansion? Is there any automation tools that are already being used? Do those integrate with the platform? Yeah, so many inputs that are needed. We are certified in over 60 platforms out there. They’re all listed on our website. And what that does is it gives us a unique perspective, we can then understand an intake, what the business requirements for the firm are, they don’t need to understand technology will then take that translate that into a technology ecosystem and say your needs would be best served by using these tools in combination with each other. Not only that, we handle the migration. And then we handle all of the training that needs to happen on an ongoing basis so that for that attorney who’s implementing a calendaring tool, I’ve heard this many times Well, I just don’t want my schedule wide open like that. Because I don’t want someone to put booking an appointment on my calendar for one hour from now. And now I have my days blown up. Yeah, well, we handle not only just giving you the tool, but we’ll find out how do you need it to operate. We’ll custom Is it an optimize it for your individual use case with every individual in that firm? So it’s really that’s the key, it’s, you know, all the tools in their base state, they’re essentially useless. It’s only understanding the business outcomes that are required. And then pairing that with the proper optimization and setup of the tools, as well as ongoing support and training for that. That’s what makes it critical.
Steve Fretzin [20:22]
Yeah. And to take it one step further, do you have a and just give me a ballpark and out of the purse, but maybe you’ve got a good case study of a small law firm, 234 person law firm that you went in integrated technology, and got feedback from the owner, like how much time it’s really saving them in the firm? Have you done that kind of research case study to get that kind of detail? So you have an idea of what it’s really doing for the end users?
Jay McAllister [20:48]
Absolutely. I’ll tell you this, on average, when we’re involved with the law firm, there is typically between a one and a one and a half hour time saving per day, per staff member, that’s attorneys and support staff. Typically, we see depending on the type of firm, whether it’s an intellectual property for personal injury firm, their higher degrees of you know, of administrative work that needs to be done versus legal work that needs to be done from an attorney perspective. And that’s where that range comes between one and one and a half hours. But that’s typically the case. In every scenario, every law firm we have on boarded To date, the lowest ROI that we’ve achieved is a 10x ROI on their spend with us. You know, firm comes in, they spend 20 grand with us in the first year, they’re making 200k As a direct result of working with us, the time savings
Steve Fretzin [21:40]
is a lot the billable hours, they get back to prospecting time for new business, it all adds up. I mean, you’re talking about five to seven hours a week per employee, if you’ve got four or 567, whatever people mean, the math is just as exponential.
Jay McAllister [21:54]
Right. But I’ll tell you this in specific last year, the end of the year 2021. We’re now in February, you’re supplying work with a property tax Berg here in the suburbs of Chicago. This firm, one of the unique challenges that they had, which really required somebody who specialized in in understanding the legal profession is they had an incredibly obscene amount of outstanding balances. I mean, their AR was massive, at $1.2 million in uncollected earned revenue. Wow. So when they told me the issue, the problem, the challenge, they said, basically, we’re at we have bandwidth constraints. No, we don’t want our attorneys chasing the money, we realized that’s not a that’s not a suitable way to practice law, that attorney needs to be separated from that they’re there to get the you know, to handle the case, to make sure to see it to its completion to understand any challenges, roadblocks that may arise. to course correct for those and basically be the best legal practitioner there is not necessarily go back and forth with the client to pay Did you pay yet. So they and then they realized they didn’t have enough support staff. So they were getting ready to hire two to three support staff. So that could just their sole role would be collect on the balances that are outstanding. But what we did is we put an automation tool in place, it was an extension of their practice management system. And in a three month period, we were able to collect over $500,000 of that revenue with zero effort on their part. And this is all through automations. You know, reminder emails, and credit card integration with their law pay, yes, clients getting an email, they can pay directly there. You know, we’re making sure all the payments and the fees are, but our debit against the correct account. They can’t debit against that that trust account, the LT account, you know, have to go against the operating account. But we set up an automation that made that process seamless. So they spent zero effort, zero energy in collecting 100,000 How they still had 700,000 to collect, but as much of it, it was a much less arduous task going after that amount of revenue versus the full amount,
Steve Fretzin [23:58]
well, then I’d safe to assume they know that they now have a system for anybody moving forward to get to get money collected right away versus it dragging out.
Jay McAllister [24:06]
Correct, collect faster and with higher degree of accuracy and with less complaints and you wait too long to collect. Now you run into the issue where the client is, well, we did the work two years ago and now I’m not financially fit to make that payment. Yeah,
Steve Fretzin [24:21]
then people don’t like to pay all bills, they just get just drags them down and they just want to forget about them and, and not deal with it. Right? Because they’ve got other things to deal with. So yeah, that’s why you gotta you gotta strike when the iron is hot, and, you know, having a good way to do it. I’ve got everybody on ACH. I mean, I think I take in one or two checks a month, maybe. And the rest is all automated. It’s all auto pay. And it’s it’s Yeah, I don’t have to like, I don’t have to worry about it anymore. Like I have no ar like Oh, that’s amazing to not have AR like incredible. That’s a that’s a totally new concept. You know, for anybody.
Jay McAllister [24:58]
One of my early mentors he owns a construction company. And one of the things he told me, unfortunately, his company did not survive the 2008 recession. And one of the reasons why is because he was floating so much, as far as outstanding balances, he had clients who had not paid and some of the work that he was doing no government entities. I mean, we’re talking 6091 20, you know, yeah. And he wasn’t, he wasn’t, you know, as far as the payment terms, he wasn’t being paid on it. So when he told me, this is, before I started my business, he’s like, we’re in a new era, everyone has a credit card in their pocket, you have the ability to bill in advanced search for your services. And if you’re not billing in advance to bill in a timely manner, right, when the work is completed, you said, Take a credit card for every interaction you have. And I guarantee you, the odds of you’re successful increased drastically. And I’ve I’ve really held true to that methodology since the very beginning. And it’s, again, it’s liberating, knowing that the money that you are expecting to collect this month, most likely will be collected, and it won’t be strung out for months down the line.
Steve Fretzin [26:06]
And I think this conversation is a great lead in to my question, which is, what’s the number one defining factor that separates lawyers and law firms who have adequate practices versus those who have flourishing ones?
Jay McAllister [26:17]
Yeah, this one actually may come as a surprise to you. And it’s, this is terrible. See,
Steve Fretzin [26:24]
I don’t surprise easily.
Jay McAllister [26:29]
Remember that around your birthday? There you go.
Steve Fretzin [26:31]
JJ is popping up behind my couch for no reason I let him in here anyway. That would do it, that would do it.
Jay McAllister [26:41]
But I think technology is a critical component of that. No embracing and technology understanding that without technology, we really limit our effectiveness and our reach. I mean, imagine before, you know, Henry Ford, right, and the automobile. Like we we would walk or take horses, everywhere we go. And there was this, there was a set distance that we really could genuinely expect to be able to drive or to travel, and then the car happened. And now we have the ability to not only have friends and social networks and conduct business within our town, but now five towns over. And then the airplane happened. And now we have the ability to transact business across time zones. And then the internet happened. And now we have the ability to transact business around the world. And who knows, maybe with the way Elon Musk is moving interplanetary business transactions. You know, that’s the critical thing about technology. Understanding that technology is not something to fear, but something that we can all leverage to increase our revenue to increase our profitability. And frankly, to have more personal, deeper relationships. You know, having the Zoom meeting at nine o’clock in the morning, when we have other meetings scheduled would be really difficult pre pandemic and presume era. The technology now is it’s working in our favor. So that’s the first part. Go Go ahead.
Steve Fretzin [28:03]
I was gonna say so. So the, you know, obviously, technology is a huge factor in in efficiency and how people are conducting business to just have that bet well balanced life, as we’ve discussed, but I’m assuming like, I do a pretty thorough evaluation of a lawyer’s business development acumen, prior to taking them on to identify that there’s a fit, identify that what I provide is what that lawyer needs, you do a pretty thorough evaluation of their current technology or lack thereof, and then you’re able to evaluate what they’re trying to achieve. And that’s a huge part of what the value you’re bringing to the table prior to making recommendations.
Jay McAllister [28:42]
Right, exactly. I mean, you hit the nail spot on, I think the biggest factor in being a flourishing practice of flourishing of a lawyer who’s practice flourishing, versus one where it’s, it’s just adequate. Yeah, is this one concept and I know you’ll agree with this D, because this is what you teach. I would have met I don’t know for sure, this is what you teach. But I would have let you know, I’ll share knowing you and your personality, you’ve got to teach us. And it’s this idea. We all track. I should say we should track the referrals that we’re receiving, where they’re coming from the magnitude of those, you know, how large was that transaction? And how can I make that happen more frequently, and with greater magnitude each time, we should all be tracking that most of us are okay. But I think what’s critical to flourishing is tracking that, but also making it equally as important, if not more important, to understand and track with the same granularity, the referrals that you’re generating for others within your social network. If you don’t make it a priority to dive in deep and understand the people that you work with and how you can best serve them. You will find that you never have enough business you never flourish Because business comes as a result of relationships. And the best way to build impactful relationships in the shortest time span possible is to find out someone’s value system, find out what’s important to them, the best clients for them, and then do your best to generate those referrals for that. So, I mean, we have as a part of the pro visors group that we’re both a member of, there’s a member exchange. And in that member exchange, there’s a listing of opera business opportunities that people are posting all over the country. I’ve gotten out to the point where I’m checking that daily, and I’m looking for opportunities for people in my network, because these are people who are asking, they’re like, hey, I need help. I’ve got a, you know, an elderly uncle who needs an estate plan. And can anyone help in Chicago? And I’m like, Yes, perfect. Now I’ve got an opportunity, I can set him up. Not only that, but guess what that’s it was an intellectual property lawyer who put that request out. So I’m going to say, Hey, I’d love to meet with you to find out the specifics of your need. Now I get to meet another lawyer, it’s add them to my spirit, someone else who I can help and send referrals to and hopefully get referrals from one day. And I also get to help someone who’s already existing in my network. I think that’s the big thing that has allowed me to succeed and grow my practice, which is, and I don’t think like this, naturally, I’m not saying I’m some saint. And the first thought I have, we know
Steve Fretzin [31:23]
you’re not a saint, we’ve been heard about, we heard about you from two years old on so we know that Sharpie on the floor.
Jay McAllister [31:33]
I think it’s, it’s just so critical. It’s like the fact that I’m always looking out for you know, this isn’t my first thought. It’s just I know that in order to succeed in order to accomplish my goals, and to help my staff here and have them live the lifestyle I want, we need to bring in business. And the way I’m going to bring in business most effectively, quicker, and with greater magnitude with each successive wave is I have to help others because they will then think about me, and whether they have a referral for me, or whether someone on the other side of the world has a referral for me, it doesn’t matter because this, you know, this universe we live in, it just operates in this reciprocal, there’s this reciprocal force that exists. And when you do good and put good things out there, I’m a believer that it comes back somewhere else.
Steve Fretzin [32:16]
And the technology is there to do this meaning there are CRMs client relationship management tools, you know, pipeline, plus, David accurate deal, or law Maddix, or whatever. But you know, then you’re tracking what you’re putting out, you’re tracking what you’re bringing in who’s providing it. And that could be your website, that could be your friends, that could be your clients. And knowing where you need to invest in spend your time and how you’re going to how you’re going to, you know, process that and then make changes and continue to evolve and take advantage of how you’re helping others and how they’re helping you and growing your law practice. So I’ll I’ll add one more thing. And then we’ll wrap up, Jay, I have an article coming out in the Chicago Daily law bulletin either before after this airs. And it’s all about developing what I call a strategic partner development and loyalty plan. So what is that? Well, how are we finding out who our best strategic partners are the referral sources? And then how are we taking care of them that could be providing leads, as you just mentioned, maybe they don’t want leads? Maybe they have no interest in that? Well, then how are we building the social component? How are we adding value by inviting them to be on a panel that we’re talking on, invited them to a podcast that we host, whatever it might be? That’s that’s something people aren’t putting any structure around. They’re doing it haphazardly and just winging it, and I’m trying to put more structure around how that works. The way that you and I are more structured than maybe other people would be. We have that lawyer roundtable group virtual luncheon that we do and other things. So I just want to say like, that’s really critical, kind of final thoughts as we wrap up, Jay.
Jay McAllister [33:50]
Yeah, I mean, that’s critical, especially nowadays, with the fact that we’re doing more meetings than we ever have had before, because of this lovely platform zoom. It’s, you know, I was in I was in a group meeting the other day where someone mentioned, if there’s one technology that you could totally get rid of, what would it be? And someone said, zoom, they’re like, I just, I’m zoomed out. And I’m like, hey, you know, I get it. I’m zoomed out, too. But as a direct result of zoom, I’ve booked quite a bit of revenue that would not have been there and transacted business, you know, the entire environment has changed as a result of of zoom and COVID people are more, they’re more compliant, they’re just more comfortable working with companies outside of their state. Now, it’s just I mean, business is being transacted. People are really looking for a best fit, you know, in a scenario where someone can work remotely like in a case like ours, Steve, with your business, people are looking for best fit and that doesn’t necessarily now mean that they have to be within the same geographic region as they are
Steve Fretzin [34:55]
has changed. You know, again, the all the technology from the things that you’ve shared in To all the way to zoom are all major factors and things that we need to start to adopt and adapt and understand that this is the future, and I don’t think it’s going away. And even if people get back to face to face, which we know is going to happen, eventually, I don’t know that it’s going to come back into what degree fully. So, you know, we have to leverage all the tools around us. And Jay, I think that’s where you really shine is the identification of where someone’s gaps are, and then the ability to help them step in and really resolve those issues in a way that’s going to make their life better and more profitable. So
Jay McAllister [35:32]
right, you have to, you know, plug into a network, and then, you know, essentially, in every engagement that we have with our clients, they’re not only plugging into us for technology help, but they’re plugging into a network where I’ve got people like you, Steve, I’ve got people like, like Cory, who’s out in Texas, I know that, you know, you know, Cory, you know, housing providers, people creating platforms and software that make the legal experience a better one. So by plugging into us, we have the ability to take your business objectives, and then pair you with the right systems and the right people and make sure that your prop, your practice runs like a well oiled machine. And that is the key to modernizing your firm, it’s, it’s necessary to keep pushing forward. And let’s face it, remote work is not going anywhere. If your firm is not embracing that. You need to find ways to do that effectively, whether it be using tools to track productivity and making sure the work product is done. And that communication can happen as seamlessly as possible. You need metrics and the visibility to see what people are doing and ensure accountability. And that at the end of the day is what we do. Awesome, Jay,
Steve Fretzin [36:37]
if people want to get in touch with you to learn more about what you do, or to actually bring you in to evaluate their tech or lack thereof, what’s the best way for them to reach you?
Jay McAllister [36:45]
Right now, LinkedIn, best way best way to and I know you’ll have my LinkedIn connected to the video, hopefully at some point, they can just go to forbes.com and search. It is members and they’ll see me there right now. I haven’t done that yet, but I am tracking for Forbes 30 under 30. So nice. Okay, I’m 27 now so
Steve Fretzin [37:05]
let me know let me know if you need a reference the thrill to write something up for you. And again everybody Jays just amazing networker, amazing technician and you’re looking for some help to get to the next level with your law firm. Certainly, you know if it isn’t business development, because I think I can help you there. Jay is the tech tech guys, the tech guru, so give him a shout. So just thanks again. Jay. Really appreciate it.
Jay McAllister [37:28]
Thanks for having me, buddy. Yeah, yeah. And hey, everybody,
Steve Fretzin [37:30]
thank you for spending some time with JNI today number of great takeaways from from my perspective and hopefully you got a couple thoughts and it’s all about being that lawyers you know someone who’s competent, organized and a skilled Rainmaker. Take care Be safe, be well have fun. Bye bye.
Thanks for listening to be that lawyer. Life changing strategies and resources for growing a successful law practice. Visit Steve’s website fretzin.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