I am seeing a dramatic improvement across all of my businesses at the moment and there is one main reason. I will come to that in more detail shortly, but before I do I wanted to tell you about the football match I saw at the weekend.
One of my friends is the manager of a Championship football team so I went to see them play with Samuel on Saturday. There are some things I like about football, like the pre-match anticipation and excitment, some of the funny songs that fans start singing instantly and all at the same time (how do they do that?) and the on pitch action.
There are other things I really do not like: I don’t particularly enjoy the aggression shown to the players or the manager of the opposition team or worse still the fan’s own team, and with a 9 year old son in tow I really do not like the vile language. Therefore, I do not tend to go to many matches.
Unfortunately Saturday’s game was not the best, so I had some time to do some thinking and pondering, and as always with me my mind went on to the subject of law firm marketing, particularly why some firms are successful and others less so. I combined these business thoughts with the game I was watching and started thinking about the Championship table and how every solicitor should also be in a table. You could score different amounts of points depending on turnover, profits, new files opened and amount of visitors to your website. Throughout the year you could monitor your position against your competitors by looking at the Solicitors League Table. Every week’s results would be put into the league table so that you could see if you have moved up or down. At the end of the year you might win the league or at least make the play-offs, or you could be relegated (perhaps you would have to move your office to a really seedy location to reflect your poor performance and so even less people would use you). The league system works for the football world so why not for lawyers? I suppose we have it in business generally to a certain extent with the stock market but only for the largest companies.
The reason this excited me so much is that why I am seeing improvement in my businesses is because I am monitoring Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) much more closely and down to a finer level of detail than before (on a daily basis). This is my league table and you should definitely have one too. You see football teams performance is monitored after every performance by their position in the league. If they do not hit their targets they drop down the league. The manager might change some of his poor performing players in the next match, and if that does not work he might bring in some new players. If the performances do not improve over a longer period of time the manager might be forced to leave (usually far too soon in most cases). However, this only happens because the league table shows how well or how badly they are performing. It is this constant measuremenet that keeps the whole team on their toes. They can’t decide to monitor their performance one week then not bother the next; the table is visible for all to see. This is a very powerful and visible management tool. For all of its’ faults, the game of football is very good with it’s KPI’s.
So the question I have for you is this: are you measuring your law firm’s performance well enough? Should you receive a promotion this year or would you be better sacking some of your team to improve performance?
If you do not already monitor your firm’s KPI’s on a weekly or daily basis, I strongly recommend that you start to. If you do not measure any pertinent figures, I would advise you to do start straight away otherwise you might find that your law firm is relegated to the ‘non-trading’ division. We all know that no one wants to be in that league!
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Author: Nick Jervis