Great Business Books For Setting Up A Law Practice. This guest post is from Maya Johnson

  Great Business Books For Setting Up A Law Practice

Starting any business is bound to be hard and stressful, especially today, when nobody can tell what kind of global financial woe may be lurking around the next bend, ready to claim the title of the next big economic crisis. However, life cannot stop because of the global aure of insecurity, nor can we stop taking calculated risks because of it.

With that in mind, I would like to share the experience of a good friend of mine, who has successfully set up an injury law practice.

Aforementioned friend made the business plan for setting up an injury law practice himself, using two business books, Anatomy of a Business Plan by Linda Pinson and Flying solo: A Survival Guide For the Solo and Small Firm Lawyer by K. William Gibson and Reid F. Trautz. These books have proven to be useful guides in making business plans that will be strong building blocks for any enterprise.

 First Business Book  Great Business Books For Setting Up A Law PracticeTo Read–Anatomy of a Business Plan

Why is business plan so important? Follow Linda Pinson’s advice:

Though a venture as setting up a law practice inevitably requires relatively big starting expenses, as well as a lot of time and effort, making a good business plan can minimize the costs and ensure that one’s time and resources aren’t wasted and that their hard work doesn’t go unrewarded.

Business planning expert Linda Pinson identifies two main benefits from the “preparation of a well-written business plan”.

(1) To serve as a guide for your business

Pinson cites that “…business plan is a blueprint of your business that will provide you with the tools to analyze your business and implement changes that will make it more profitable”.

(2) As documentation for financing  

A business plan is a requirement if one is planning to seek financing. According to Pinson, every lender wants to know how you’ll maintain the cash flow and repay the loan on a timely basis. You will have to detail how you intend to use the money and back up the figures with estimates, industry norms, rate sheets, etc.

Second Business Book To Help You–Flying solo: A Survival Guide For the Solo and Small Firm Lawyer

 Flying solo: A Survival Guide For the Solo and Small Firm Lawyer

When it Comes to Research and Creation read “Flying Solo”

Gibson and Trautz in “Flying solo” state that “every firm – large and small – should think strategically about its goals and objectives”. They also stress that “going through the process of developing a business plan requires a great deal of strategic thinking on your part”. The business plan should be adapted to one’s needs and limitations. You should thoroughly research what exactly you are getting into, and an apprenticeship in a law firm might be very useful in that regard. That kind of experience will be invaluable in identifying the issues you will face, as well as in structuring your payroll, marketing, case management and billing.

K. William Gibson specifies the following elements needed in a good business plan:

(1)       Description of the services the firm will offer.

(2)       Statement of the location where the practice will be situated.

(3)       Description of the target market.

(4)       Projection of expected revenue and operating expenses.

(5)       Statement of personal resources intended to commit to financing.

(6)               Statement detailing personal worth (assets and liabilities).

Things You Need To Do On Your Own:

It is a good idea to hire a certified public accountant (CPA), who will give the financial aspect of your business plan credibility with potential lenders. A CPA will standardize the form of your financial statements and projections and lead you through the process of complying with the regulations of International Revenue Service and other government institutions.

You may get useful advice from Bar Association Practice Management Advisors, usually former lawyers of law practice administrators. It is also advisable to find a mentor among the established personal injury lawyers, whose advice will be invaluable in avoiding the hidden traps every young law firm will face along the way.

An effective business plan must never be considered completely finished. It is advisable to have a copy of it in a loose-leaf binder, so current financial statements, updated rate sheets, recent marketing information, and other data may be added as they become available.

Check out this blog post about 5 business books for small business here