Grow or Die! I first heard that statement nearly a decade ago but I didn’t realize its power until this recent economic downturn. Until then, I was under the impression that as a business owner it was my decision to grow my business or keep it simple and manageable. Now that I’ve seen my biggest challenges, financially, as a professional and a business owner, I understand that “Grow or Die” is not a choice but an absolute necessity for the survival of any business.
If you take a look at the economic landscape today, it is the big and powerful companies, even the ones that got into some financial trouble, that are thriving. It’s the companies with a wealth of resources that are excelling in today’s economy. My excuse for keeping things simple and manageable in my law firm was a lack of time and money. What’s your excuse?
Especially frustrating to me is that I’ve contributed my time and efforts to organizations that have focused on growth and have witnessed its benefits first hand. So I should have known better. Another statement that I’ve been recently introduced to is “if you want to go fast go alone, but if you want to go far go with a group.” I definitely went fast as a solo practitioner but our professional careers are more of a marathon than a sprint. So take a deep breath and carefully plan your move forward.
Get Your Team Ready!
You have to be willing to surround yourself with the right people. This usually costs a significant amount of time and money so you need to be resourceful about how you get the right people together. You may consider tapping into your savings, getting a loan, or partnering with another attorney. Your main objective should be to surround yourself with the best and brightest attorneys and support staff available. If you currently have attorneys and support staff personnel, you need to take inventory of their skill level and their accomplishments over the past year or two. Can these people get you to the next level? You need to be brutally honest about this assessment because the wrong people on your team bus are going to take you and your business down the wrong path.
Small, Medium & Large: No Matter the Size, All Must Grow!
This focus on growth applies to every organization, no matter its size. The focus on growth is a culture that needs to be created and developed with “urgency” within every organization. There is no rest for the weary if you will. This is free market competition at its best and you have to be on your game 24/7 to excel. Competition is fierce! Growing your law firm will lead to adding and/or changing attorneys, management personnel, support staff, practice areas, or offices in other cities and towns. It all depends on your current situation. It’s a scary thought but one that will pay huge dividends in the future if properly executed. Be cautious but be bold and grow your business like its life depended on it. Because it does.