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By Jared Correia, Red Cave Legal, Official Consulting Partner of the IndyBar
Goal setting for attorneys is often circular. Most times, their goal is to set goals.
Because lawyers don’t utilize goal setting, they underachieve. They’ve got nothing to strive for, nothing to compete over, nothing to drive them to the next chapter of their business. This is probably the chief reason why the status quo dominates law firm management, and why most law firms exist in suspended animation. It’s why I’m never surprised to talk to an attorney who sounds like he’s running a law firm from 1999.
It matters less what your goals are than the fact that you set them. If you’re interested in making more money, run some revenue projections and set specific revenue goals. If you want more of a lifestyle practice, figure out how you’re going to work less and build more time into your schedule and then create actionable goals to get you there. Maybe you want to grow your law firm beyond a solo or small practice; if that’s the case, you’ll need to figure out a manageable plan to arrive at that station, including for when and how you hire new staff.
Not every goal is going to represent a total transformation of your business, but you should have at least one that does represent that. It’s called a BHAG, or a "Big Hairy Audacious Goal." This is the major long-term goal that you want to achieve for your law firm, and that will represent a fundamental, positive shift in the way that you do business. Since many lawyers are risk averse, perhaps the best way to categorize this is by asking: What’s your "impossible dream" for your law practice?
Even if you don’t get there, getting 80 percent of the way there is better than sleepwalking through the rest of your business life.
If you need help establishing a BHAG, we’re here for you.
The IndyBar offers FREE law practice management consulting services through Red Cave Law Firm Consulting. To request a consult, visit the IndyBar law practice management consulting landing page, and start running your law firm like a business.