Checklist for Conducting Your Law Firm’s Year-End Financial Review

The end of the year is barreling toward us — are you ready? If not, here are a few tips for tidying up your practice and doing a comprehensive financial review. Financial Management for Your Firm For many lawyers, financial management is the business area of practicing law that provides the most heartburn. It’s completely understandable. But it is to your detriment when you don’t understand the financial fundamentals better. Hire financial advisors to aid you in better understanding your business. Too many lawyers delegate responsibility to employees who have not been properly trained. Be aware of potential landmines. A major red flag is having one employee who has all financial responsibility: check writing, bookkeeping, trust accounting and reconciliation, as well as maintaining all communication with your financial partners and bank. Checks and balances are key. Often, there is no ill intent on the part of the employee, just a lack of knowledge. If, as the owner, you do not understand the process, you will have a hard time finding the flaws in your system or properly supervising. nalyze your cash flow. Brenda Barnes, owner of B2 Management & Consulting, has this to say about law firm finance: “A good system of cash flow management can spell the difference between a successful business and a failed one. You need positive future cash flow to meet your debt commitments. Strong cash flow management also provides the ability to invest in growth. Getting to a position of excess cash flow helps your company operate in a strategic, proactive way, and can help keep you from operating on the defensive. Year-end is an excellent time to document your cash flow, prepare a cash flow budget, and look for areas of improvement.” What Should a Law Firm Financial Review Include? A Year-End Checklist Barnes

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Eliminating Bias in Work Allocation Is a Growing Focus for Law Firms

Does your law firm work allocation model leave too many associates behind? Historically, work allocation in law firms has primarily been driven by partners. When a partner chooses an associate to help them with a matter, their skills are important, but so is the associate’s proximity and the impression they’ve left on that partner. As their working relationship deepens and the associate’s experience widens, they can quickly become the go-to person when that partner needs help. The Problem with the ‘Proximity and Familiarity’ Model On the surface, this seems like a win-win. The partner wants the best person on their matters and has no reason to look elsewhere unless their preferred associate is unavailable or unequipped for the matter at hand. But work allocation based on proximity and familiarity risks conscious and unconscious bias, leading to unfair work distribution among a firm’s associates. If a partner monopolizes an associate, they are also depriving that associate of experience working with other partners and denying other partners the help of that associate. When the Center on the Legal Profession at Harvard Law School explored law firm work allocation in 2017, longtime partners confirmed that traditional work allocation has an implicit bias toward associates who can easily develop relationships with partners. “An associate’s talent and abilities are critical and the key selection criteria, but unintentionally, people are sometimes drawn to those they think they can work the easiest with — those who studied in the same university, are into the same sports, have the same kinds of interests,” said Bas Boris Visser, a partner at Clifford Chance. This is just part of the reason why some firms, especially larger ones, have been gradually shifting away from this model. Some have appointed one person to make or approve assignment decisions for a firm or practice

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Online Marketing: Try These 3 Techniques to Tempt Targets

You’re putting out great content but can’t get clicks. How frustrating! Here are three suggestions for online marketing teasers to get people to open that email or click on the social media link. 1. This/These The title of this post could have been “Three Techniques to Tempt Targets,” but for some reason, we can’t resist the pull of “this” or “these.” The viewer of “Every Employer Needs to Know This Law” is more likely to click through than if the title was “An Important Law for Employers.” You will see this gimmick all over the sponsored posts on your social media platforms. It’s ubiquitous because it works. 2. Include a Number “Try These Techniques to Tempt Targets” would have worked. But including a number is better. A post that presents information in the form of a list is known as a listicle. The title makes a promise of a specific number of nuggets of information. The format fulfills that promise. Teasing with a number works even if the number is one. My mediation blog includes posts on “The One Thing You Can Control in Negotiation” and “The One Thing to Do to Maximize Mediation Success.” You want the reader to think, if there’s only one answer to the implied question, it must be crucial; I better find out what it is. 3. Use Alliteration Alliteration is the repetition of a sound at the beginning of successive or nearby words, as in “Techniques to Tempt Targets.” Alliteration makes a phrase catchy and memorable. Alliteration is very common in product names, such as Bed, Bath & Beyond and Dunkin’ Donuts. The 20th Century Fox Film Studio executive who gave Norma Jeane Mortenson her first contract renamed her Marilyn Monroe. There’s a reason all the Kardashians’ names start with “K.” Creative Content Marketing

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Lawyers on TikTok: Tips for Short-Form Video Marketing

As one of the newest and most popular social media platforms, TikTok’s user base is growing rapidly. After starting as a place for short-form comedy videos, TikTok has developed into a valuable marketing tool with the potential to reach millions of consumers. Moreover, the virality potential of this platform is unparalleled, so businesses have a greater opportunity than ever to reach vast audiences by leveraging short-form video content. While TikTok presents a great opportunity for law firms to market their services, many attorneys are unsure of how to use the app or whether it is worth the investment. Several attorneys, however, have found success on TikTok, leveraging it to attract traffic to their website and establish a relationship with potential new clients. What Is TikTok? TikTok is a short-form video-sharing app that has reached 1 billion monthly active users since its inception. A major component of its popularity is its ease of use. Most videos are 15 seconds or less and can be crafted easily using a mobile device. Despite being a global app, TikTok emphasizes localized content and in this way is ideal for community building. The app is a hot spot for the millennial and Gen Z audience, with 41% of its users aged 16-24. As the app continues to gain traction, the user demographics are shifting to include older individuals and businesses. With this in mind, it is clear why more and more businesses are turning to TikTok to share their brand and diversify their marketing strategy. The Power of Short-Form Video Content TikTok garnered serious virality in 2020 and 2021, and other social media platforms like Instagram and YouTube have taken note. As more and more platforms continue to shift to quick, short-form content, marketers are beginning to follow suit. It’s clear that short-form video is

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Thinking Your Way Out of Anxiety: What Lawyers Need to Know About the Brain 

Nurturing your limbic brain can bring your emotional life and rational life into balance and help heal your pain.  As a coach and counselor dealing with attorney burnout, I became fascinated with the neurobiology of our brains and why it matters. I came by this interest honestly after I burned out in 2004 and quit practicing law. The science of the brain has made incredible advances since then. We now have a much better understanding of why our minds work the way they do — including why some people thrive in challenging environments and others burn out. How the Reptilian Brain, Limbic Brain and Rational Mind Work Together What we know now is that we have three distinct brain systems housed within our skulls. The first sits atop the spinal column and is popularly known as the primal (or reptilian) brain. This controls our basic functions such as reflex and autonomic bodily functions such as breathing and heartbeat. It also regulates reproduction, survival, and fear.The second is known as the limbic brain which sits on top of the reptilian brain and processes emotions and feelings as well as regulates memories. Some believe that this is the seat of the subconscious mind. There is some debate over where the subconscious mind is located, however. I believe that it depends on the function being regulated. The third is the rational mind — the neocortex, which controls thinking, ideas and language. It filters information that will be recorded in the limbic brain and interprets that information as memory. How we think about the world colors our memories. While each of these three is distinct and has separate functions, there is a great deal of overlap and integration. Our baser emotions such as fear, anger, lust, guilt, and shame can be overridden by the neocortex. Conversely, rational thought

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A&A team advises Digivriddhi Technologies Private Limited in raising its Pre-Series A Investment round

Ahlawat & Associates’ Corporate Team (“A&A”) has advised Digivriddhi Technologies Private Limited (hereinafter referred to as the “Company”), on its Pre-Series A Investment round wherein the investment was undertaken by IE Venture Fund I (“Investor 1”) and Omnivore Partners India Fund 2 (“Investor 2”). The deal value of the Pre-Series A Investment round amounted to USD 3.1 Million. The Company, with its registered office in Bangalore, Karnataka, is a fintech company and is engaged in the business of facilitating neo-banking services to dairy farmers located in the states of Gujarat, Karnataka, and Maharashtra. The deal marks A&A’s latest advisory work relating to advising and rendering its opinion to a fintech company that specifically focuses on channelizing the dairy sector, an unorganized sector, in our country. Managing Partner, Mr. Uday Singh Ahlawat led the deal from the A&A team with support from Senior Associate, Ms. Disha Toshniwal; Associate, Ms. Shramona Sarkar; and Associate, Mr. Sarthak Chawla. “A big heartfelt thanks to the entire team of A&A for assisting us in closing this round of investment for the Company. It was a pleasure working with them. The sharp analytical skills portrayed by Disha, and her team helped us in traversing through and understanding the complex structures of the transaction documents and the team was always available to guide us throughout the transaction.” Mr. Ragavan Venkatesan, Founder of the Company, commented. The post A&A team advises Digivriddhi Technologies Private Limited in raising its Pre-Series A Investment round appeared first on LexForti . Did you miss our previous article… https://www.itcse.org/?p=581

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So, You Wanna Write a Book? Five Tips to Help You Get Started

These book writing tips from an editor will help you get clear on your goals and strategy for being a published author. Writing a book can be time-consuming, but it also can be rewarding — both personally and financially. Books are a great marketing tool and can have a great return on investment. They tend to open new avenues, primarily by attracting new clientele. A long-time client author has seen a return on his investment every year by more than 300% from having attracted clientele willing to invest long-term in his firm’s services. Other authors have written books to start side hustles or share decades of wisdom in a memoir. Whatever your reason, here are book writing tips for getting started on penning that tome. Five Book Writing Tips 1. Know what message you want to convey and to whom Most authors make the mistake of writing to suit everyone. The truth is when you are writing for everyone, you are writing for no one. Being too inclusive in your writing can dilute your message. When you have a specific audience in mind, you can tailor your content to that audience. For example, you may write a book with a primary audience of pre-law students, law students and new lawyers. The key is to know who your primary audience is and to focus your efforts on attracting them to your book. But writing to satisfy a specific audience doesn’t mean you won’t attract others. Another or secondary audience might find the book helpful, such as readers with an interest in politics, history and law. Ask yourself these questions: Who are the people you are trying to help?What do you want your book to do for your reader?How should your reader feel after reading it — inspired, confident, renewed, empowered, enlightened?Should

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Fit and Proper person criteria: SEBI 2021 Amendment

Author: Noyonika Nair is a graduate from NLU Jodhpur. She specialises in Corporate Laws. She had worked with Khaitan & Co, Mumbai in the past. The concept of ‘fit and proper’ in corporate laws are just as alluding as the qualifying authority of ‘reasonableness’ in constitutional and administrative laws. The phrase ‘fit and proper’ as an epithet has been employed across commercial laws to provide regulatory oversight and assessment criteria for evaluating inter alia directors and key managerial personnel to ensure that such persons are capable to run the company. In India this criterion has been an object of proliferate use by regulatory authorities like Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI). The key idea behind such criteria application is to increase corporate governance standards, and thereby investor protection and economy preservation. One of the key regulations of SEBI which deploy this criterion are Securities and Exchange Board of India (Intermediaries) Regulations 2021 (Intermediaries Regulation). This regulation aims to governs all middlemen in the capital market. Recently, SEBI issued a notification amending the vide Securities and Exchange Board of India (Intermediaries) (Third Amendment) Regulations 2021 (“Notification”). The Notification is effective from the date of its publication in the Official Gazette. Key Changes Key changes introduced to the Intermediaries Regulations are as follows: Application of ‘fit and proper person’ criteria:The ‘fit and proper person’ criteria shall apply to the applicant or the intermediary, principal officer, directors or managing partner, compliance officer and key managerial persons, promoter or persons holding controlling interest or persons exercising control over the applicant or intermediary, directly or indirectly.Principle based criteria for determining a ‘fit and proper person’:In addition to principle based criteria of integrity, reputation, character, absence of convictions/ restraint orders, the Notification has added additional criteria of honesty, ethical

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Cyber Monday 2021 Deals for Analog Attorneys

Cyber Monday 2021 is coming up fast. I’ve thought long and hard about the annual edition of Analog Attorney’s Cyber Monday gift guide. So, because I want you to take full advantage of this insane sale day, this year’s guide highlights an Analog Attorney favorite: Levenger. Levenger’s Cyber Monday 2021 Sale Is Storewide My unnatural love for all things Baron Fig is only eclipsed by my even greater love for all things Levenger. Levenger was my first analog crush and I’m still in love with them. If you’ve never heard of Levenger products, just head on over to their store and try not to lose your mind at the sheer magnitude of hyper-luxurious analog treasures. If you’re in a hurry, I’ve picked a list of the tools that make Levenger great and will make your work-at-home experience and home office setup wonderful. Notecard Bleachers Are My Cyber Monday 2021 Deal of Choice This was my first gasp of true love at Levenger. They just get me. I’m a professed index-card kind of guy. I use them for a billion different things, including my external brain. But someone at Levenger reached deep into my analog mind and pried out the thing I didn’t know I needed: an index card bleacher set. Just imagine the sheer kicking of ass you can perform when your note cards are standing at attention in the corner of your desk. 30% off, no minimum, [Code: WISHES] valid 11/12 – 12/22 Lev Tech Portable File Tote, Oh My God Hybrid attorneys lug a lot of loads between their office office and their home office. This can get fairly ridiculous fairly quickly, as that one file folder you shove into your laptop bag turns into a bank box stuffed to explosion. Plus, that banker’s box doesn’t match your

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Ethics Reminders for Lawyers Texting Clients

Question: I feel like I did all I could over the last few years to keep my cell number out of clients’ hands. But I think I opened the floodgates when I recently began allowing clients to text me. The convenience factor and desire to modernize my customer service won out, or at least that’s what I told myself. Now that I’ve opened the door to another channel of communication, what ethics pitfalls might come from texting clients? Answer: In previous articles, I’ve focused on ways to successfully use email — “the grand champion of modern-day communication” – as well as try to get lawyers to ditch email for more secure client engagement (read: client portals). But I’m glad to see the topic of text messaging come up. It’s an important reminder of how we can apply the same ethics rules to novel techniques of delivering legal services. In other words, the rules don’t change, just how we apply them. Let’s dig in! Just as I’ve asserted that secure client portals should replace email communication with clients, text messaging should follow the same logical progression for how we engage with clients and store information on attorney-client matters. So, just as you’d take a call from a client on your mobile device, you may likewise fire off an email, text message or instant message. However, while they may offer convenience, are we sacrificing security and embracing potential ethical pitfalls with what may be sensitive information? Four Ethics Considerations for Lawyers Texting Clients Here are four considerations for lawyers to keep in mind when texting messaging with clients: Customer serviceConfidentialityCommunicationDocumentation 1. Customer Service While you’ve asked specifically about texting or SMS communications, many clients use and prefer various electronic communication tools other than email. These can include instant messaging services like Facebook

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