Law Practice Management News
Ideas for Lawyers and Managers That Dare To Be Different April 2013

in this issue

Law Firm Expansion - Expanding Your Geographical Reach

Mentoring Law Firm Associates: Getting the Basics Right

Solo-Small Firm Question of the Month - Law Firm Owner Considering Bringing in a Partner

Download Our Profitability Checklist

Looking to Sell or Merge Your Practice - Let Us Know

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John W. Olmstead


Welcome to Olmstead & Associates Law Practice News, a law practice management resource for practicing attorneys, managing partners, administrators, and others that must keep updated on all aspects of law firm management.

Our Law Practice Management E-Newsletter is distributed on the first Wednesday of each month. Look for it and send us your emails with your ideas for topics that you would like covered. I wish to thank those who take the time to email me with their thoughts and comments. I encourage our readers to do so.

We represent a law firm in Central Kentucy that is interested in selling its tax preparation practice to a accounting or law firm. Practice generates $300,000+ a year in fee revenue. Interested parties should contact John Olmstead via e-mail at jolmstead@olmsteadassoc.com.

  • Law Firm Expansion - Expanding Your Geographical Reach
  • We have had several firms in the 14-25 attorney size ask us about geographic expansion, approaches, and pitfalls to avoid. Here is our response to a recent question posted by a 14 attorney law firm in Des Moines, Iowa.

    Click here for the rest of the story . . . .
  • Mentoring Law Firm Associates: Getting the Basics Right
  • A law firm's greatest asset is its people and your associates are your firm's future. Lack of mentoring is one of the biggest complaints that we hear from associates in on-site interviews.While you may be too small for a comprehensive formal mentoring program you should at least explore an informal program. Start with baby steps and go from there.

    The keys to successful mentoring relationships involve the mentor and mentee deciding on the logistics up front. Many potential mentoring pairs fail to form because the parties did not agree on the little things up front. Below are tips designed to help both participants in formal and informal programs:

    Click here for the rest of the story . . .
  • Solo-Small Firm Question of the Month - Law Firm Owner Considering Bringing in a Partner
  • Question I am the sole owner of a law firm in Tucson, Arizona. I have 7 associates working for the firm. I have one very senior level associate that I want to consider for partnership. I want to do this to keep him interested (he has been approached by other firms) and I envision him being a cornerstone of my succession plan - 10 years out. How should I start the process with him?

    Answer: It sounds like you have found the person - or whom you believe is the right person for partnership. However, just because he has been a good associate does not mean that he will be a good partner - the relationship will be different. But at least he is somewhat of a known quantity since you know him and have worked with him for several years.

    Here are a few ideas of where you might start:

    1. Outline you goals and expectations for the relationship
    2. Meet with your associate and identify his goals and expectations for the relationship.
    3. Determine how much control over the practice and decision-making are you willing to give up? Share?
    4. Determine how much and for how long you are willing to make less?
    5. Determine if the associate will be expected to bring in business? When/Timeline?
    6. Think about the firm you want to build - firm-first or lone ranger (team based or individual practices)?
    7. Decide on firm name - will it change? Should it? Impact on image, clients, etc.
    8. Decision as to capital contribution or buy-in? Yes or No? How much? Timeline for payment?
    9. Ownership percentages and voting
    10. Compensation and withdrawal arrangements

    Once you can come to terms with some of the above issues craft a suitable partnership or operating agreement that you can both live with.

    Click here for out blog on partnership
  • Download Our Profitability Checklist
  • Are you looking for a quick and dirty checklist to use to review the profitability of your practice. Click below for a copy of our Law Practice Profitability Checkup.

    Click here to download ...
  • Looking to Sell or Merge Your Practice - Let Us Know
  • We frequently consult and work with law firm clients working on implementing succession strategies that involve the sale of a law practice, merging with another firm, or hiring lateral talent. If you are looking to join up with another firm keep us in mind. We will be posting confidential listings on our website in the near future.

  • FREE Guide to Law Firm Management Best Practices
  • Download a FREE copy of our Guide to Law Firm Management Best Practices.

    To learn more about Olmstead & Associates visit their web site at www.olmsteadassoc.com

    To View & Print the FREE Guide

    ::Phone 314-241-5665