Stop Doing These Things to Maximize Productivity at Your Small Law Firm

/, Tech Tips & Resources/Stop Doing These Things to Maximize Productivity at Your Small Law Firm

Your small law firm regularly operates on tight deadlines to ensure tasks and cases are completed on time and on budget. Keeping up with all the deadlines and competing demands on your time requires you to get serious about productivity and to cut unnecessary “time sucks” out of your days. Could you benefit from getting a few extra hours back in your week? Here are three things you might be able to cut back on.

Regular Meetings

Employees spend about 40% of their workweek in meetings and dealing with other “interruptions”. For a busy small law firm like yours, there’s simply no time to waste on unnecessary meetings. Instead of having several one-off meetings each week as things come up, try to combine topical agenda items into one weekly meeting. By compiling an agenda beforehand that captures questions and discussions likely to come up throughout the week, your firm will be more likely to stay on task and get through each item, and you’ll minimize some of those daily interruptions that can derail your work.

Manual Activity Reporting

Monitoring firmwide metrics is crucial to the health of your firm. However, asking your employees to manually track how they’re spending their time is not productive for anyone. Smokeball Activity Intelligence acts as your firm’s own metrics tracker and automatically reports on firmwide progress and tasks completed without requiring any extra effort from you or your staff.

Wasting Too Much Time on Email

Do you find yourself spending hours on end buried in email? While communicating with clients through email is inevitable, internal emails can be an even bigger time suck, and they’re totally unnecessary. Inter-office chat systems like Slack are great for quick questions or quick check-ins with your team members. Instead of refreshing your inbox waiting for your remote co-worker to finally respond to your outstanding email, send a quick Slack message and keep moving with your day.

Time is your most valuable resource. Make sure you’re being selective about how you spend your days, and cut back on the tasks that aren’t helping you reach your goals. If you’re interested in learning more about how your firm can better track its productivity, take a look at this blog post: Three Metrics Every Small Law Firm Should Track Monthly.

By |May 5th, 2016|

About the Author:

For years, Josh has helped lawyers become more organized, productive, and profitable. A trained litigator, Josh came to Smokeball from a large east-coast law firm where his practice focused on franchise, insurance, marine, and general litigation. His work with Smokeball, and his continued passion for what he does each day, is driven by a desire to help lawyers and their staff do better in every way. Knowing well the stress and strain put on today’s legal professional, he regularly focuses on improving work and life in the law. He has traveled the country working with and learning from lawyers and their staff. Josh speaks regularly to bar associations about successful law firm practices and other legal topics. Recent notable engagements have been with the Chicago Bar Association, the Illinois State Bar Association, and the Missouri Bar’s Solo and Small Firm Conference. In addition to his work at Smokeball, Josh serves on the Writing Resource Center staff at The John Marshall Law School. Besides legal technology, his research interests include judicial decision-making, jury decision-making and psychology, and legal writing. He has written and overseen research exploring causal effects of sex/gender on federal appellate court decision-making, and assisted with research for a forthcoming textbook on judicial decision-making. Additionally, Josh sits on the Board of Directors of Chicago-based Community Activism Law Alliance and on the Board of Directors of Chicago Fringe Opera Company. Josh holds his J.D., cum laude, from Washington University in St. Louis, where he served as a Senior Editor of the Wash. U. Law Review, held the prestigious Thompson Coburn Research Fellowship, served as Research Assistant to then-Vice-Dean (now Chancellor) Andrew D. Martin, and clerked at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. He holds a B.A. in Political Science and a B.M. in Music Performance with Honors Scholar distinction from the University of Connecticut, making him a Huskies basketball fan through and through. Follow Josh’s activity on LinkedIn, and keep up with new articles on the Smokeball Blog.