Patrick Lamb

Patrick Lamb

Valorem Law Group LLC

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Latest Publications


The Greater Fool

Most people spend their lives trying not to be the Greater Fool. We toss him the hot potato. We dive for his seat when the music stops. The greater fool is someone with the perfect blend of self-delusion and ego to think that...more

10/9/2015 - Client Services

Winning the daily war within

I have internal demons. To ease the burden of these demons, I imagine that everybody has their share. Even if not true, believing it to be makes it easier to accept that I have demons. But deep down, I know I must fight mine...more

10/9/2015 - Client Services

Every assertion of client ownership weakens a firm

“It’s my client.” “I get the billings.” Even the magnanimous say, “I”ll share the billings.” In court, you often hear lawyers refer to “my client.” Each own of these assertions of ownership weakens everyone involved. Most...more

9/23/2015 - Billing Client Retention Client Services

Litigators: What’s your story?

Trial lawyers see a case as a story. They are constantly thinking about the story and why the jury should care about it. Litigators see a case as a series of motions and briefs, depositions and documents....more

9/22/2015 - Client Services Depositions Litigation Strategies

Law Firm Signal and Noise: More telltale signs of signal

In Part 1 of this post, I noted how law firms had become so adept at creating “noise” about various topics, focusing on client service and alternative fee arrangements. In Part 2, I identified 5 questions a General Counsel...more

9/22/2015 - Alternative Fee Arrangements Client Services General Counsel

Law Firm Signal and Noise: Telltale signs of signal

In Part 1 of this post, I noted how law firms had become so adept at creating “noise” about various topics–client service and AFAs for example, they they effectively drowned out any signal on these topics. Much of what firms...more

9/17/2015 - Billing Client Services Litigation Fees & Costs

Law Firm Signal and Noise: The Art of Saying Nothing

I was reading this interesting Fast Company article about what the 2016 Presidential candidates talk about when speaking of income inequality. This statement was interesting: Does all of this talk about inequality render the...more

9/16/2015 - Client Services

Why ValoremNext?

A lot of people have asked why we chose this name for our prevention platform. I wanted to answer those many inquiries. My new partner Jeff Carr, the iconic former General Counsel of FMC Technologies, sometime ago defined the...more

9/15/2015 - Billing Client Services Firm Leadership

The 4 stages of change.

Richard Susskind wonderfully described the 4 stages of change: Stage 1: “What you’re saying is worthless nonsense.” Stage 2: “What you’re saying is an interesting but perverted point of view.” Stage 3: “What you’re saying is...more

9/10/2015 - Alternative Fee Arrangements Client Services

Prevention: The next step in the (r)eveolution of law

In the beginning, we solved problems but did so inefficiently and unpredictably. That was Old Law. Most clients don’t like Old Law because they are under budget and performance pressure. Then we learned to be efficient and...more

9/8/2015 - Client Services Law Practice Management

Take 2: A lesson from the healthcare industry

There are certain mistakes made by doctors or other healthcare professionals that result in the need for further treatment. An example is sponge that is left behind during surgery, which generally necessitates further...more

9/1/2015 - Client Services Health Insurance Healthcare Healthcare Professionals Hospitals Insurance Industry Jurisdiction Pleading Standards

Pushing work down to lower priced lawyers: why is that a good thing?

This just caught my eye. The data – some $18 billion in legal invoices – suggests the largest law firms have modified staffing models and reassigned IP litigation work to more junior partners in an effort at cost control....more

9/1/2015 - Client Services Intellectual Property Litigation Law Firm Associates

Results of Valorem Survey of In-House Counsel on Hiring Priorities

Valorem Law Group recently surveyed in-house counsel. A huge thank-you to the 42 in-house lawyers who responded. The question we asked was: Here are the results: When making a decision to hire a law firm to handle a...more

8/31/2015 - Caseloads Client Services Hiring & Firing In-House Perspective

Valorem Law Group’s Why

One of the most-watched TED talks is by Simon Sinek. Called “Start with Why,” Sinek compellingly argues that why an organization exists is more important to its success that what it does or how. Sinek offers Apple as an...more

8/31/2015 - Client Services Law Firm Partners Law Practice Management


Words matter. I have chosen mine poorly. I am here to correct my ways. For the longest time, I have written critically of “BigLaw,” as if size itself was the problem. To be sure, most large law firms suffer from the problem,...more

8/27/2015 - Big Law Litigation Strategies Young Lawyers

What were they thinking?

I can’t even make stuff like this up. Lawyers and invoices are a toxic combination, but the AmLaw 200 firms that are responsible for these examples have people who are supposed to prevent the lawyers from revealing their...more

8/25/2015 - Billing False Billing Fraudulent Charges Invoices

Client Service Lessons From The Movies: self-assessment

When it comes to assessment, this is what most people think of themselves: But the reality is this: So people delude themselves. When the makers of a product win some trials and lose some trials, how many of the defendants...more

8/25/2015 - Assessment

Some thoughts on the Top 5 Bad Excuses for Resisting Legal Project Management

Pam Woldow and Doug Richardson penned a terrific post, Top 5 Bad Excuses for Resisting Legal Project Management. I wanted to compliment them and share some thoughts on the 5 excuses. 1. My clients don’t want or need LPM. I...more

7/27/2015 - Law Practice Management

Example of bad budget methodology

I just read something that made me say “wow, that is soooo wrong.” Out loud. Here is what I read (from Today’s General Counsel, Jun/Jul 2015, p. 42: Compounding the problem is the fact that most complex cases are unique. An...more

7/10/2015 - Budgets Litigation Strategies

Are e-auctions the ticket to lower legal fees?

According to Bloomberg BNA, Honeywell General Counsel Katherine Adams has determined that e-auctions are the ticket to lower legal fees. For those unfamiliar with the process, an e-auction is where the the corporate counsel...more

6/19/2015 - Business Development Competitive Bidding Legal Fees

Have you hired an Innovation Intern?

I just got an email from my friend John Kain in Australia. John is the CEO/Managing Partner/Leader of the Pack (not sure of his title) of Kain C+C Lawyers in Adelaide. John is as forward thinking as any lawyer I’ve meant,...more

6/18/2015 - Internships Legal Recruiting

A small step that makes clients’ lives easier

Have you ever read an email and wondered to yourself, “what’s the point?” Then you get to the end and realize there is no point. Or the point is something totally different than what you thought. When this happens, it’s...more

3/19/2015 - Client Services Email

Steve Jobs and Collaboration: what lawyers can learn

I make no secret of the fact that I have looked to Steve Jobs for ideas and inspiration. I found this Fast Company article on the Evolution of Steve Jobs to be fascinating. The discussion of his evolution as a collaborator...more

3/19/2015 - Client Services Collaboration Steve Jobs

Timekeeping company argues lawyers using AFAs still need to keep time

One of the great things about non-hourly billing is that it frees you from the tyranny of timesheets. You stop thinking about billing and start thinking about results, about outputs, about deliverables. That approach is an...more

2/3/2015 - Billing Law Practice Management Young Lawyers

Pinnache and Pizzazz or Milquetoast and Vanilla

Some people speaking with style. Some put you to sleep. Most law firm websites are the latter. Law firms are so afraid of offending someone that they fail to capture the hearts of anyone. We’ve tried to be the former, to let...more

1/30/2015 - Business Development Hospitality Industry Hotels Young Lawyers

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