Law Firm Growth Tip: Start Where You Are, Not Where You Want to Be

Have you ever watched a skyscraper being built? It’s a fascinating process. Watching a building grow taller week after week can be almost exciting. But if you’re around at the beginning of it, you’d almost never realize what was about to happen. In fact, it’s downright boring. Clearing the land. A lot of trucks and shovels moving dirt and rocks off the lot—and then for the next several months, they start digging down rather than building up. No skyscraper starts at the top. Every skyscraper starts with a great big hole.

Starting an amazing law firm can feel very much the same way as the early stages of a skyscraper. You can envision this big, tall building, but what you actually have right now is a vacant lot filled with rocks, roots and other debris that needs to be cleared out. But if you don’t start by taking the time and effort move the rocks and dig down, your business won’t have a strong foundation to stand on. My point: True success begins by starting where you are, not where you hope to be. You have to take things as you find them, not as you wish they were.


To Illustrate the Point

What do I mean by taking things as you find them? Let’s put it into dollars and cents as an example. You need to spend money to make money, as the saying goes, and you want to make a lot of money—so you decide to pour a large part of your investment capital into a mass advertising campaign similar to what the big corporate law firms use. Huge billboards, television spots, the works. Maybe you even get some leads from this huge spend. But now you’re faced with some huge problems:

  • You have spent too much of your budget on advertising, so you don’t have enough left for operating expenses. You wind up taking on huge amounts of debt as a result.
  • You haven’t spent enough time or money on your infrastructure or intake system. When leads start responding to your ads, you’ll lose them because you don’t have a pipeline in place to convert those leads to clients.


Bottom line: You’re now deep in debt, and you still don’t have the clientele to support your expenses. You spent all that advertising money for nothing.

What happened? To return to the skyscraper metaphor, you skipped the part about clearing the land of rocks first. You just started building the walls with no foundation. You were so enamored with the idea of a huge successful law firm that you spent that money as though you already were a huge law firm. You started where you wanted to be, not where you actually were.

It’s great to dream big and have great ambitions. Just make sure that when you’re building that dynamite law firm you don’t skip the small, boring stuff. Have a clear picture of where you are right now so you can take actionable steps toward where you want to be. We can help you devise a realistic strategy to help you reach your goals. Give us a call at (888) 207-2869 to learn more.

Building Better Business Systems For Law Firm Owners