In this episode, Steve Fretzin and Josh Fitch discuss:
- Taking educated risks.
- How Josh started his own firm directly out of law school.
- Networking as an allyship.
- Having a fit with you, your client, and your employees.
- Having a partner takes away some of the isolation of running a firm alone. It also gives you a time to share in the victories and strengthen each other through the trials.
- Have a contract for your partnership, but also have written agreements as to what is expected from each partner that is measurable and specific.
- We live in a digital age, the power of a face-to-face connection is immeasurable.
- Look at what revenue you are losing by doing tasks that don’t need to be done by you. Get those off your plate. How much are you willing to pay for the comfort of controlling everything?
“The book of business doesn’t just come out of nowhere, it did require a massive effort of just kind of creating a presence here in Denver.” — Josh Fitch
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Show notes by Podcastologist Chelsea Taylor-Sturkie
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[00:00:00] Josh Fitch: I developed an kind of an army of CPAs and financial planners and different people that were looking for the same target market. So when we go to networking events, it wasn’t just me anymore, it was me and the 10 people that I knew would be there. Who all know what I do and the type of person I’m looking for, and I know what they do and who they’re looking for.
[00:00:18] Josh Fitch: And you kind of spread out as like a, a group force all kind of meeting people and introducing and things like that, and you become so much more efficient that way.
[00:00:31] Narrator: You are 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.
[00:00:53] Steve Fretzin: Hey everybody. Welcome to be that lawyer. I am Steve Fretzin, and it’s so wonderful that you’re with us today. Hopefully you’ve been a listener for a while. We’ve got, I dunno, 260 something episodes of great content with legal rainmakers and experts in legal that are gonna help give you the tips and the tricks and the ideas and the men, the mental, you know, uh, sort of like stamina to, to make it as a lawyer these days.
[00:01:16] Steve Fretzin: Before we get to our main guest today, uh, Josh is waiting in the wings. How’s it going, Josh? Good. How are you, Steve? Doing okay. Doing okay. I already did a presentation this morning for about 200 lawyers, so I, and I still actually have some energy left for you, so that’s a good thing. I’m happy about that.
[00:01:32] Steve Fretzin: All right, here you go. Yes. We’re gonna introduce Josh in a minute. For those of you who are not familiar with frets and ink, we only do two things. We work with high, highly ambitious attorneys to teach them everything they never learned in law school, primarily how to plan and execute to grow business year after year after year.
[00:01:49] Steve Fretzin: No one works with frets and twice we get everything internalized so that you can do it for the rest of your career on your own. That being said, we do have a lot of our graduates who then roll over into our rainmaker round tables and our business developer round tables, and these are essentially mastermind groups, peer advisor groups for lawyers who feel like they’re on an island and wanna get off and, and join with a bunch of other ambitious, uh, attorneys to talk shop, right, to work on problems and challenges together, but also to share best practices.
[00:02:17] Steve Fretzin: And that we’ve got five of those groups going strong and just want to share if that’s of interest, either of those programs are of interest to anyone listening. Don’t be shy about emailing email@example.com. Happy to talk and, and evaluate and just try to make sure there’s a good fit. I do teach sales free selling, so you won’t be sold anything.
[00:02:34] Steve Fretzin: I have nothing to sell. It’s all about trying to figure out if we’re a good fit and if there’s a reason to, to take next steps, and that’s enough about that. Josh. Holy mackerel. It’s a kind of a long, long dry now thing. Josh was so kind as to send the, your very familiar quote of the show, and this is something that’s taken me back a little bit to my Harry Potter days.
[00:02:56] Steve Fretzin: I think I’ve watched each of those movies at least three times and read the books. Every Great Wizard, wizard in his history has started out as nothing more than what we are now. Students. If they can do it, why not us? And so that’s a, is that, that’s a Harry Potter quote, or from the Harry Potter books.
[00:03:13] Josh Fitch: That’s a quote
[00:03:14] Steve Fretzin: from Harry Potter himself. From Harry Potter. Okay. Well, very good. Well, first of all, Josh, welcome to the show. So happy that you’re with us and, uh, we’ve got a lot to talk about today. But tell me about why you submitted that quote as, as your kind of quote of the show. Sure. So
[00:03:28] Josh Fitch: I formed my firm out of law school, directly outta law school because I was basically kind of seeking a lifestyle and a career that wasn’t really on the menu, at least as far as I could see it in law school.
[00:03:38] Josh Fitch: You know, you’ve got the vague firm route, you’ve got the inhouse route. But there’s not really much kind of airtime given to the idea of, of being a solo or a small firm practitioner starting your firm. And when I kind of announced that this was my plan, I received kind of a lot of negative feedback. You know, just not personalize, but generalize.
[00:03:55] Josh Fitch: Like, oh, you can’t do that. That’s not what’s done. I would, you know, just wait, you know, follow, you know, kind of fall in line. And I kept, you know, asking the question of like, well, why can’t I? And it wasn’t really answered. And, and that’s why that quote is inspirational to me because it. It reminded me that, you know, everybody who’s ever started their own firm, including one of the biggest firms in Denver, where I practiced, was started at some point by someone who was probably nervous about doing it and wondered if they had what it ticked took.
[00:04:20] Josh Fitch: And one of the biggest, most, well repu firms in Denver was started by a couple of guys when they graduated law school. So I kept just wondering, you know, if those guys could do it, if, if people can be successful doing so, then why not me? You know, how are they different as a three L in law school than I am here as a three L in law school?
[00:04:36] Steve Fretzin: Yeah. And I don’t think it’s about straight up, you know, smarts and intelligence. I think it has to do with motivation and it has to do with perseverance and grit. And in fact, I just published an article on, uh, the Chicago Daily Law Bulletin. It’s up on my website called Allard. I don’t know, are you a Premier League soccer fan?
[00:04:52] Steve Fretzin: Do you ever watch any of that or no. Yeah, you do. So like the, the, the group, the, um, there’s a show on Prime called, uh, arsenal, all or Nothing, arsenal, and it’s backstage watching them go through their entire season of, I think it was 2021 or 20 21, 20 22. But just listening to the coach talk about passion and grit and what does it take to persevere, to win not only the game, but the season and all of that.
[00:05:16] Steve Fretzin: So my article is really about that. I think that’s what it’s more about. It’s about not just taking a risk, it’s an educated risk, right? I mean, you took a risk, but I think you knew yourself well enough to know that if you worked hard at it and you really put everything into it, that it would take you, you know, it would get you where you needed to go.
[00:05:32] Steve Fretzin: Is that pretty accurate?
[00:05:34] Josh Fitch: Yeah, I think you hit the nail on the head there with saying, knowing yourself, you know, too, you can know the legal profession, the law that you practice. Hey, eventually you’ll learn your market. But for me, so much of it was kind of an emotional management challenge and knowing yourself and not getting too high on the winds, and not getting too low on the lows, and kind of having that balance that allows you to persevere through all the challenges you’re facing.
[00:05:55] Josh Fitch: 99 perfe, percent of which are totally unexpected. Yeah. So
[00:05:59] Steve Fretzin: I think that leads us to, you know, you’ve shared like, you know, hey, started your own practice right out of law school, which, you know, for people listening, a, they’re gonna say, I would never do that. B, they would say, that sounds scary. So how did you kind of get not only that decision made, but then once you decided to move, to start your own firm, how did you try to get to, to that successful point of profitability and to where you weren’t, you know, going crazy?
[00:06:26] Steve Fretzin: How did walk us through that? Sure.
[00:06:28] Josh Fitch: So it was, I mean, my inspiration for starting a firm is something I would wish on. Nobody, unfortunately, right before I graduated my three L year, I lost my brother and it was that kind of tragedy that made me want to chase a life worth living and not just a lucrative career.
[00:06:44] Josh Fitch: So that’s when I decided to start my own firm having no idea how to do it. So I kind of had this imperative, I’m going to start my own firm. And after that was a kind of, holy crap, how do I do that? So I didn’t kind of come up with a plan and then decide to do it. I, I decided, decided to do it and then had to kind of construct a plan together.
[00:07:02] Josh Fitch: So to dive into the weeds quickly, I realized with no book of business, I’ve gotta figure out a way to generate revenue and keep the lights on immediately. So I basically had a three prong attack. The first prong was working for legal insurance providers, which are basically groups that you can sign up with for free.
[00:07:16] Josh Fitch: You do light kind of elementary legal matters, and you get a small amount enough to keep the lights on. Prong two was basically work as an independent contractor under mentors. And in doing so, I essentially outsourced the mentorship that I would’ve hoped to receive in a larger firm, but did it in a more networked fashion by basically offering my services as a licensed attorney, essentially at a paralegal rate.
[00:07:38] Josh Fitch: The mentors who I knew had excess work, so that was a way to generate a little bit of revenue while also receiving mentorship at the same time. And all of those things kind of kept the ship afloat as I went to try to build a book of business from scratch. And then, you know, as I went and got those clients and that consumed the other two prongs, I was able to just kind of have a fully functioning firm with my own book of business.
[00:07:59] Josh Fitch: So kind of tactically that’s how I was able to do it right out of the gate. And then and after that, you’re off to the races and, and just trying to build the firm that you want.
[00:08:08] Steve Fretzin: Right. And so Josh, just a quick question. I mean, uh, you started your, your practice right outta law school. Was that with your partner Troxel or did you add him later on?
[00:08:16] Steve Fretzin: How did that work out now that you have a partner?
[00:08:18] Josh Fitch: So that was basically when we were studying for the bar after I had decided to start a firm. But before he decided to join me and twisted his arm a little bit, they kind of offered the first name spot in the Troxel Fitch firm name. And he was actually considering being kind of like a big firm tax attorney and actually went to Greece after the bar for like 10 days by himself, and I think kind of had one of those revelations that life is about more of their work and decided, you know what?
[00:08:41] Josh Fitch: Let’s do our own thing and do it our own way. So before the firm was start, Started, I had a partner, but it, uh, it took some controlling to get him to join.
[00:08:48] Steve Fretzin: Got it. And was that helpful just in, in the motivation of having someone else, like for accountability and for idea sharing and for stuff like that versus kind of doing it just straight on your own?
[00:09:00] Josh Fitch: I think it’s enormous. I mean, it, it could be working for yourself in any industry can be isolating and in the law when, when what we basically do is handle other people’s problems and your day-to-day is just constantly being burdened with problems. It’s nice to just have someone in the foxhole with you.
[00:09:15] Josh Fitch: Someone who’s also going through the same thing, that you can basically kind of strengthen each other through the hard times, as well as share your victories in the good times. Because often it’s to talk about how successful you are, how well you’re doing is very off-putting to other people. So you often don’t have anyone that you can share that with.
[00:09:32] Josh Fitch: So it’s. I think it’s enormously helpful to have someone on both ends of that spectrum. Someone that you know, can kind of huddle together when you’re really going through it and keep your heads low and be stronger as a team, as well as celebrating as a team when you do something well. Yeah, but I
[00:09:46] Steve Fretzin: think it’s really, it’s really important to find a good partner that you trust and that you know has similar, you know, integrity, similar just value systems, because there’s a saying in partnerships, no ship sinks quite like a partnership.
[00:10:00] Steve Fretzin: So, you know, I think, you know, you really need to be careful about how you select and who you select. And having an agreement in place in writing also helps, right?
[00:10:10] Josh Fitch: Oh, uh, enormously. So I am very lucky in that, you know, kind of living the dream in that my business partner is my best friend, was my best friend before we started.
[00:10:18] Josh Fitch: The firm still is after five years of practice and plenty of trials and tribulations. And I think, you know, to, to your point, it’s extremely important not only to have written agreements, like an operating agreement for the L L C. But written agreements of what you are holding, the goals you’re holding yourself to.
[00:10:33] Josh Fitch: We realize immediately, both being kind of hardheaded, competitive, ambitious individuals, that if we were opposed to each other, it would eventually, it had to be the two of us collectively against the task. So rather than, you know, posting, you know, having him promise me or me promise him things that we are going to do, or just a amorphous level of effort, we wrote down, you know, this is what effort looks like.
[00:10:56] Josh Fitch: You know, these are the metrics that we want to see hit. So that it wasn’t us against each other. Subjectively, it was us together against the objective goals that we agreed were reasonable, agreed, could be reached. And that way I didn’t have to say, Hey, I feel like you’re not working hard enough, and create that kind of subjective tension.
[00:11:13] Josh Fitch: It was all, Hey, this is something that you volunteer, you volunteered as a goal that you could meet and you are not meeting it. Or vice versa, you know, let’s talk about that. So it didn’t create that kind of oppositional relationship. It was kind of a, a collaborative relationship against our set of goals.
[00:11:29] Steve Fretzin: Okay. And back to an earlier point, you, you were kind of talking about the three prongs or the three different ways that you developed business. How long did it take for you to get away from some of the, kind of the lower end, lower paying gigs to really focus on the main work, working with your own clients and getting sort of self-sustaining through that third prong that we talked about earlier?
[00:11:49] Josh Fitch: I’d say after full year, we were probably like 85% on our own book of business where we were doing, kind of winding down the other things, still doing them to finish out projects, but it did make any substantial chunk of the firm’s revenue. Right. And in the first year, one of those goals, Nick and I both promised each other, we would spend 150 networking events, not counting lunches or coffees.
[00:12:09] Josh Fitch: They had to be like evening group events. So that was an incredible surge of energy and time. But we’re both extroverts and we kind of like that. You know, you’re 26 years old, you just came outta law school, you’re now carrying the title of lawyer and c e o and your ego definitely loves that. So I, you know, the Hollywood form of going around like, oh yes, in fact I am an attorney.
[00:12:28] Josh Fitch: Oh, I know I look young. That’s amazing. Um, you’re not gonna lie, you enjoy that a bit. So it wasn’t as grueling as it might sound, but I think that’s how we did it. It’s the book of business doesn’t just come out of nowhere. It did require a massive effort of just kind of, you know, creating a presence here in Denver.
[00:12:44] Josh Fitch: But after that, you know, after that heavy lift, we were kind of, we kind of were self-sustaining at that point.
[00:12:50] Steve Fretzin: Well that’s a lot of networking events and there are lawyers listening right now that think that’s insane. And I was doing that very same thing. Not only going to networking events, but running many of my own networking events.
[00:13:02] Steve Fretzin: And what would you say was like your biggest like one or two takeaways from like, all right, like from when you started networking and just kind of going out there and just kind of like winging it to like, Learning some lessons or things that you’ve sort of like pulled out of like how to do it more effectively or how to make better use of your time?
[00:13:21] Steve Fretzin: Anything that you, that you pulled away from that that you can share? Yeah, I think,
[00:13:26] Josh Fitch: you know, to try to, to try to say things that aren’t going to be in your basic networking book. I think the two things that I realize are one, that networking is probably more importantly about what it does to you than about how you market your services and.
[00:13:39] Josh Fitch: Giving you, that’s kind of desensitizing you to the nerves and the anxieties so that when you walk into a room, you’re comfortable that you know how to strike up and maintain any conversation and ex exit a conversation when it’s time to exit. And the confidence that inspires in you and the ability to then counsel clients or walk into other rooms because you know, you’ve done it so much that you’re so desensitized that you just don’t feel nervous at.
[00:14:00] Josh Fitch: And I think the kind of the way that changes you as a personality is extremely important. And second, I think the thing that I learned about networking is when I first went into it, I thought, you know, networking is a one-to-one type thing. I will meet someone who needs my services or they do not. And I realized what it actually is, is you’re kind of recruiting an army to do that for you.
[00:14:19] Josh Fitch: You know, if you can do it well and you can just not be awkward and make people feel comfortable and, and find people who are looking for the same type of people as you are. I developed an kind of an army of CPAs and financial planners and different people that were looking for the same target market.
[00:14:33] Josh Fitch: So when we go to networking events, it wasn’t just me anymore, it was me and the 10 people that I knew would be there who all know what I do and the type of person I’m looking for. And I know what they do would do, they’re looking for, and you kind of spread out as like a, a group force all kind of meeting people and introducing and things like that.
[00:14:50] Josh Fitch: And you become so much more efficient that way. So I think that was a, a huge takeaway from all the networking was realizing like, don’t just seek to shake every hand that might need your services, like find allies. Yeah. Did you know that 36% of potential clients would take their business elsewhere if they had a bad call experience?
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[00:16:29] Steve Fretzin: I think there’s, there’s two ways to build a network. One is deep and one is wide. And I think if you’re just starting out, it’s good to like get out there and just meet everybody and, and, and kind of cast a wide net. But then to your point, when you start getting busy with work, You need to start thinking about, all right, so I know these 200 people, but there’s probably 10 or 20 that are more aligned with my business, more aligned with the same kinds of clients that I’m looking for, CPAs, other lawyers, whatever it might be.
[00:16:54] Steve Fretzin: And so while it’s good to get the branding in of the wide net, I think the networking success happens with the deep net, right, with the, with the one where you’re really highly targeted strategic partners, centers of influence and, and just direct clients that think you’re terrific and can refer you to everyone they know.
[00:17:11] Steve Fretzin: So, absolutely. That’s a great takeaway there. I love that about developing that army. I think that’s a really great way to look at it, that you’re not alone. You really have all these other soldiers around you that are there to support you. Yeah. So then taking it further than that, um, that ended up becoming, I’m assuming that a, a great way of you developing referral sources and is that generally how you then are continuing to build after you get past year two and three and now?
[00:17:40] Steve Fretzin: You know, the last couple years, what’s been your primary way of getting business and, and, and keeping it built up?
[00:17:46] Josh Fitch: Yeah, I think, you know, we live in such a digital age that the power of a based to base interaction or a handshake is, is really irreplaceable. So after developing that many actual like real personal connections, we developed a lot of business from those people either referring clients or becoming clients.
[00:18:01] Josh Fitch: And then, you know, clients continuing to refer as well as some of the more amorphous just. Even people that I met casually didn’t know that I was a business transactional attorney. They just, anyone needed a lawyer. They’re like, oh, I know Josh. He’s a lawyer. So when all those started to come in, even for areas in which we don’t practice, we could then refer those out and create strong referral relationships with your personal injury attorneys, with your tax attorneys, with your litigators, things like that, that are complimentary but different to our practice area.
[00:18:28] Josh Fitch: And those became, again, really strong referral funnels. And then basically we kind of harnessed that energy into Google reviews because we found that that created a huge benefit in our natural s e o strength. So we actually didn’t have to pay for marketing, just kind of the natural s e o whatever, magic, whatever that creates, got us enough internet traffic that could, when combined with our networking, um, has really kind of filled that funnel of new business.
[00:18:56] Josh Fitch: Yeah. So
[00:18:57] Steve Fretzin: between the networking, the relationships you’ve developed, the Google, you know, being on page one at Google or wherever you are, that’s getting you to be found. It’s all kind of working together to bring you business. Now, is there also a point where you’re maybe so busy that it becomes a little
[00:19:15] Josh Fitch: unruly?
[00:19:18] Josh Fitch: Absolutely, and and that’s been the challenge is as we’ve gone from needing to generate business and take every client we can to now trying to kind of. Preserve that work-life balance where now we’ve got more work than I could do while maintaining the lifestyle that I wanna maintain. So now we have to figure out, figure out kind of how to resist it.
[00:19:36] Josh Fitch: And the quality of client doesn’t necessarily diminish, but it changes when there are internet referrals that don’t know you. All the people that met me in person know that I’m practicing in my own firm because I don’t wanna live the big li big firm lifestyle. And that, you know, work life balance is important to me.
[00:19:50] Josh Fitch: So they’re the type of people that don’t expect a callback within two hours. You know, if we’re 24 or 48 hours before I respond, they’re okay with that. And that’s how they live their life as well. That’s why they work is because we’re simpatico in that regard. When you get clients from the internet and that, you know, kind of surge comes in, they tend to be less understanding of that because they know you less.
[00:20:10] Josh Fitch: So it in the natural ebbs and flows of business, kind of when a slow month happens, you’re like, well, I’m gonna take all the business I can because it’s a slow month and I want to kind of flatten out that curve. But then in times like December, when everyone’s trying to finish things before the end of the tax year, everyone’s coming all at once when you are trying to wind down for the holidays, and that’s when it can get very overwhelming because people do have legitimate deadlines and legitimate needs for the work.
[00:20:33] Josh Fitch: But when that typically episodic, Workflow spikes and everyone needs the same thing. It, it can be very overwhelming.
[00:20:41] Steve Fretzin: Yeah. So is there, is there a way that you have found that’s comfortable to, you know, alright, you’re talking to someone that found you on Google, you’re on the phone doing a, a consult, and you just kind of realize they’re not really for you.
[00:20:54] Steve Fretzin: Like, whether that’s because they don’t have any money because that’s, they’re just, what they’re looking for isn’t really where your sweet spot, how do you handle and kind of not reject them, but like, Help them without taking them on.
[00:21:07] Josh Fitch: Yeah. I kind of always look at it in terms of a fit, like a, a legal relationship is a trusting working relationship where in order to do good work, there has to be kind of honest and forthcoming information from both sides.
[00:21:19] Josh Fitch: And you have to be able to work collaboratively together. And with some clients, whether it’s they, you know, either just can’t afford the level of service that I wanna provide, or you know, we just don’t work together, I’ll typically describe it that way and say, Hey, well, you know, this is my style. And for reasons A and B, I’m not sure if that’s going to be the best fit for what you are looking for, whether that’s turnaround time or volume of output, or whether that’s kind of budget and pricing and say, you know, listen, this is the way we like to do things.
[00:21:48] Josh Fitch: We pulled ourselves to a very high standard of protecting you and representing you legally. That’s going to require a level of work that I’m not sure is in your budget. You know, I might advise you to go look for another attorney who might be able to get you farther down the path you’re trying to walk for the resources that you have than I would be able to.
[00:22:04] Josh Fitch: Yeah. So I usually try to describe it as like, there’s a reason that we don’t fit, not as, I don’t wanna work with you. Goodbye.
[00:22:10] Steve Fretzin: Right. Make, if you can’t, uh, make a new client, make a friend, and try to move them on with, with appropriate resources or appropriate ex explanation as to why it’s not a good fit and you know, Just be, just be nice.
[00:22:25] Steve Fretzin: Right,
[00:22:26] Josh Fitch: right. And, and I think interacting with lawyers is so intimidating and challenging for so many people. They don’t know what our specialties are, what we do or how to do, like kind of how to find the right lawyer for them. So that’s always something that I’m gonna try to do is say, Hey, this is the type of attorney that you need for your matter.
[00:22:41] Josh Fitch: This should be the Google query that you put in. If I don’t know someone to make a referral and you know, this is what you should look for so that at least they can like kind of go farther down the yellow brick road on their search.
[00:22:51] Steve Fretzin: Got it. Got it. So are you set up right now with you and with with your partner, with any paralegals or associates or are you guys still kind of just doing it on your own without that, that support?
[00:23:01] Josh Fitch: So we use a virtual executive assistant and she does everything that’s basically not legal work and it’s fantastic and I would highly recommend establishing that relationship if you can, and investing in it. We went through I think three or four assistants that didn’t quite work out before reaching Paige, our assistant, who is phenomenal and.
[00:23:19] Josh Fitch: The amount of efficiency and just benefit she has brought to our business is absurd. And just getting that stuff that doesn’t require your law degree off your plate and like kind of helping you focus like, Hey Josh, you know, stay focused. This is what you need to do, this is what I’ll do. So that you can do that.
[00:23:36] Steve Fretzin: Yeah, but wait a second. You know, I need to do my own books and I don’t feel comfortable letting go of that. Or I don’t feel comfortable with someone else making copies or, you know, other things that lawyers say that are just insane. Because if it’s something that someone can do for 10, 20, 30, 40, $50 an hour, you gotta delegate it.
[00:23:54] Steve Fretzin: There’s no way you can, whether you’re at a big firm or solo or anything in between, it’s all about your time and it’s all about making sure that you’re valuing your time. In fact, um, I was talking about an article I wrote recently about the all or Nothing, which just came out, but there was another one about quitting and I, you know, I.
[00:24:12] Steve Fretzin: How important it is to, to delegate and to quit doing things that aren’t really good use of your time. How do you do is, are there things that you’ve had to quit or networking or things that you’ve done to, to say, look, this isn’t the top priority more, I need to get out of it and, and really focus.
[00:24:29] Josh Fitch: Yeah, and it was difficult cuz I certainly had that instinct of like, oh, I don’t, you know, if you want it done right, do it yourself.
[00:24:34] Josh Fitch: I don’t trust others. And I had to kind of think in the framework of like, what is the price of that comfort? Like in looking at the revenue, I’m foregoing to do my own books or, or write my own blogs. You know, how much revenue am I foregoing if I was billing that at a full clip and would I actually pay that if I had to pay?
[00:24:49] Josh Fitch: You know, would I pay two hours worth of work? Would I pay $800? So I, for the opportunity to write this book and frame that way, it seems absurd. Of course, you wouldn’t do that, you would just just dish that off and bill more. So that’s kind of how it was for us. Where I realized, you know, I liked some of the marketing aspects.
[00:25:05] Josh Fitch: I liked the networking and some of those kind of more business executive things, but realized like, these things don’t need me. I don’t know what it is in me that feels like I need them, but let me work on that because these things don’t need me. Yeah. And then once I got ’em off my plate, I realized like, huh, this is actually way better, you know, the things are being done perfectly fine.
[00:25:22] Josh Fitch: That stress was unwarranted, but I am now way more efficient and making more money doing so. So I think you just gotta realize, like, I’m not sure you willing to pay for the comfort of controlling everything. Yeah.
[00:25:31] Steve Fretzin: And I think an easy way to figure that out is just to make a list of what you do every day or, or over a course of a, a few days, maybe a week even.
[00:25:39] Steve Fretzin: And just make a list. Look, this is at my pay grade and this is not, and just if you start to realize there’s 20, 30, 40 tasks that you’re doing and working on every single day and every week and it’s just killing your time. Well, yeah. That’s why you’re working so hard. That’s why you’re stressed out.
[00:25:53] Steve Fretzin: That’s a, a big part of, you know, why you’re not doing business development, for example. That’s why a lot of lawyers push it down because they’re so busy with everything and it shouldn’t be everything. It should be the client work, business development. What else? That’s it. Right?
[00:26:09] Josh Fitch: probably those two things.
[00:26:10] Josh Fitch: And then wrote, hopefully finding a social
[00:26:11] Steve Fretzin: life. Yeah. Having actual time with your family or friends or social life to travel. Right. That’s what it’s all about. Well, Josh, this has been great. I really appreciate your sharing your story, your wisdom, the things that you’ve sort of picked up along the way.
[00:26:25] Steve Fretzin: Um, your game-changing book that you sent me is one I haven’t heard before. Ego is the Enemy. So talk to me about that book and why you submitted that as your sort of game-changing book.
[00:26:35] Josh Fitch: Sure. So I, I think that that book is basically a book that kind of goes on stoic philosophy, and I think that’s very useful for lawyers to be able to remove ourselves from the emotional volatility of our client issues, of our own issues, which are always going to be there, and always, always going to be some cause for alarm if you allow it.
[00:26:52] Josh Fitch: So for that reason, I was attracted to stoic philosophy, but that book particularly, it’s not talking about big ego like, you know, I’m the man, I’m the coolest person ever born. It’s talking about kind of small ego. Like the way ego just affects your day-to-day thinking on little tiny tasks about like really, like do you want to actually accomplish a thing or do you want to be perceived as the type of person who is accomplishing the thing?
[00:27:16] Josh Fitch: Because if all you care about is the perception, you will buy all your own BS and you will basically just mess around and gallivant as this person without actually doing any of the things this person would do. And you’ll see that in the growth of your firm and in your revenue. If you can kind of control yourself to just kind of shut up and do the task and not worry about the accolades, not worry about being seen as the person who, who’s starting your own firm or this visionary who’s practicing law in a new way and just do it.
[00:27:42] Josh Fitch: You’ll get so much farther down that road and eventually without looking or trying receive the accolades attention anyway. But if you are focused here in this ego place, you are distracting yourself. Yeah. Like if you’re totally forego the ego and you’re focused on what you’re actually trying to accomplish, you are laser focused and will actually.
[00:28:00] Josh Fitch: Achieve the status that you were trying to pretend you had. So it’s, it’s the micro ways that that describes ego and it illuminates how it’s your day to day moment to moment thinking that has been really influential to me and changing the way I go about my day and the way I conceptualize production and work and socializing and things like that.
[00:28:18] Josh Fitch: Yeah. And
[00:28:18] Steve Fretzin: it’s a quick read. Yeah. I mean, that sounds like a book that people should be picking, that people should be picking up Josh. I like that. Yeah. I, I highly recommend it. And you said a quick read that also gets people’s attention. No one’s looking for, no one’s looking for a 500 page dissertation on ego.
[00:28:33] Steve Fretzin: Right. So get down to it. Yeah, get down to it. Not a textbook. Awesome. But Josh, Josh Fish, he’s the co-founder of Troxel Fish, and, uh, people wanna reach out to you. They wanna, you know, you’re in, you’re outta Denver, but if they wanna reach out to you and talk with you, network with you, et cetera, what’s the best way for them to reach you?
[00:28:50] Josh Fitch: Sure. So people, everyone’s welcome to email me if they’d like to. It’s just josh dot bitch trel bitch law.com. You can check out our website. I’m on LinkedIn. If any of those places shoot me a message that I’m happy to connect. You know, always happy to help other attorneys who are looking to kind of get away from the me grinding monster of our profession and find a way to, to build some kind of balance in their life.
[00:29:09] Josh Fitch: If there’s any insight I have that can assist in that regard, I’m always happy to provide it.
[00:29:14] Steve Fretzin: All right, well thank you Josh for sharing that your contact information. Also, wanna take a moment to thank our sponsors practice Panther Legalese and Money Penny, all working to help you grow your law firm in an automated way, in, in a way that’s gonna help you, you know, again, get your time back.
[00:29:30] Steve Fretzin: So, uh, thank you Josh. I appreciate you coming on the show, sharing your wisdom, and I hope you and I can stay. You know, tighten together and, you know, keep talking because I think what you’re doing is, is inspiring to a lot of attorneys out there, especially the ones that are like living like kind of a, not a great life.
[00:29:44] Steve Fretzin: And, and I think getting out on their own might be the, the trigger to, to change things up. So I think it really inspirational.
[00:29:51] Josh Fitch: Well, thank you Steve. I appreciate you having me. I’ve had, I’ve had fun today. Yeah. I would just say to kind of anyone that. That is in the position that you described, just recognize that, you know, everybody kind of older than you giving you the advice that it’s possible does not live in the digital aids like we do with all the tech resources we have.
[00:30:06] Josh Fitch: So the, you know, the days of needing a hundred thousand dollars law library and tennis assistant are over, you know, we have digital tools that they couldn’t imagine and, you know, be willing to explore that and you might just find that you can do it.
[00:30:17] Steve Fretzin: Yeah. It’s, I, I would say in the history of, you know, legal, it’s probably never been easier to go out on your own with all the automations and all the.
[00:30:25] Steve Fretzin: Virtual this, virtual that. Right. So it’s, you know, I know it’s the scary thing, but it’s less scary than maybe 10 years ago for sure. Yeah. Yeah. Awesome. And thank you everybody for spending some time with, uh, Josh and I today. Hopefully you got a couple of good takeaways and some great inspiration and motivation to, uh, be that lawyer, someone who’s confident, organized in a skilled rainmaker.
[00:30:44] Steve Fretzin: Take care, everybody. Be safe. Be well. We’ll talk again soon.
[00:30:52] Narrator: 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.