Rather than discuss more about how the lawyers can use the Internet to further their marketing efforts, I wanted to share a recent experience about how the World Wide Web can be used to do something more powerful– and equally important as developing business– fostering relationships.
Is the web making lawyers too isolated?
Like many attorneys, I spend a good chink of my days perched at my desk doing lawyerly things like taking phone calls, emailing defense lawyers and researching my cases. Over the past several years, advances in web-based technologies have seemingly made my job easier– or at least more sedentary and isolated. While we can look at these developments as advancements, it is important for us to recognize that the many of the basic in-person socialization opportunities that lawyers inherently needed to do on a daily basis– going to court, sitting down at the law library, meeting with other lawyers– have been lost along the way.
For some lawyers, the ability to truly operate in a virtually on-line world has made their professional life relatively isolated. Yet, for another group of attorneys, the web has truly opened the doors to opportunity in terms of fostering relationships with both attorneys and non-attorneys alike.
Taking the show on the road
Last week, several factors seemed to converge and as a result I was drawn from my trusted desk spot in my Chicago law office to (supposedly) sunny Southern California. Like most lawyers working with a crammed schedule, my initial reaction to an extended work trip was, ‘no way’ and ‘I’m too busy’ and the ever important ‘how will my business operate without me?’While I had a series of depositions on a pending case, my first stop was to pay a visit to a California accident attorney, Michael Ehline.
While I wouldn’t feel the urge to write about most business meetings with colleagues, I think the circumstance which connected us deserves mention as we had never met in person before. In fact, I doubt our paths wound have crossed but for this thing called the Internet— and in particular a grass-roots legal organization called the Circle of Legal Trust (COLT) which is intended to help attorneys get control of their web presence.Without sounding to gushy, I think its pretty cool that the the on-line world has allowed a group of lawyers from across the country to develop a really unique opportunity to help each other with marketing, business development and yes, even the support needed to transform these ideas into reality.
As I get back to my normal routine, my trip was a reminder that there’s a lot more legal work than can be done on-line aside from doing research and sending emails– like building real business relationships. I truly look forward to my next trip to California– and who knows, maybe it’ll be sunny?