Yesterday we talked about the five ways to get new legal clients. Today we will dig deeper into “How to find the area of law you want to practice”.
How to find your law practice area?
As we start our law practices, we have choices on which areas of the law to practice. Many new practitioners are hungry for anything that comes in the door. One day a divorce client, the next day a probate client and then a bankruptcy client. There is no rhyme or reason to the way the practice develops. The new practitioner is just reacting to what is presented to him. The following is a more systematic way to develop a law practice.
Here are three tips on choosing an area law to practice.
1. In a perfect world, what area of law would you like to practice?
Take a few minutes in a quiet space to answer this question: “If there were no time, financial or educational constraints, which law area would you practice?”
Sit at your computer or with pen and paper and let your mind wander. Push out the negative talk that clutters your head and dream for a while about what you see yourself doing?
This is a time to be free. No one will read what you write. You can be as honest as possible. Your spouse, your mother, your law school buddies and your family will not have to know what you wrote. This is for you.
This exercise will give you a direction to take your practice. This does not mean that if you wrote “work for the Google legal department” that a job will materialize tomorrow. It does mean though that you will have a direction. You will have a target to follow.
2. Write down your star job or area of the law that you want to practice.
The things that we write down and review tend to get done. Harvey Mackay, in “How to Swim with Sharks Without Getting Eaten Alive” tells the story of him being a young envelope salesman. He wanted to get the envelope account at General Mills in Minneapolis, MN. Mackay wrote down the goal and stuck it in his hat, in the days that men wore hats to work. Everyday he put on his hat, he saw the goal: the General Mills account. For five years he kept that goal and after five years he finally gained a small account at General Mills which eventually allowed him to gain the whole corporation.
Had he not had that goal written down, he might not have achieved it.
Write down your goal or your dream and refer to it often.
3. Work backwards from your dream area of law.
If your dream area of the law is to practice securities law, research what the successful securities lawyer does and what got him into his position. What supplemental education will you need? What resources do you need? Where do they work. What did they do to get into their position. If you have the goal in sight, stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before you to help you get where you want to go.
Now is the time to dream big.
What law area would you like to practice and how can our readers help you?