Monday, July 30, 2007

Legal work: there's hope for the little guy yet.

Most people were very happy for me when I decided to end the daily grind of working at a first-rate boutique law firm specializing in real estate. It really was one of the toughest decisions I've ever made because I truly liked the place. Some, however, said I was doomed to working on routine, even dull legal work because only the big firms got the "sexy" deals (note the use of quotes because I've yet to see an arousing real estate deal).

Admittedly, I do some more mundane work these days than I used to. And that is okay. I also have some cutting edge work, too, and time to write and do other things I enjoy. Besides, clients are apparently becoming more and more interested in attorneys like me to do their legal work, both large and small. And this is all in spite -- or perhaps because -- of the mega mergers in law firms and predictions that people like me would go the way of the Model T.

Why? Check out this story about small firms and solos working for companies like The Trump Organization, Equinox Fitness and BP. According to a study, we provide better value (read: twice the value) for the dollar, better client service and better focus on the most important thing of all: the client. You also obtain for your dollar the experience of a more seasoned attorney who has been around the block. The spiraling cost of legal services is obviously a big factor. And I think we really do try to understand the business of our clients and make sure we provide the best level of service possible at a reasonable cost.

Is this a commercial for my firm or my services? I guess it is in a way. But this is not a slam on my many BigLaw friends. They can still do the megadeals that I can't without proper notice to tool up, and they also do work I'd rather not even touch. But guess what: we're here too, we're not going away, and we're not just doing house closings.