Patrick Lamb

Patrick Lamb

Valorem Law Group LLC

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Dream Big. Why Not?

As a young boy, I vividly remember following Bobby Kennedy’s Presidential campaign. Like his brother Jack, Bobby was greatly admired in my Irish-American household. His death was met with great sadness. I sat riveted during...more

3/15/2017 - Business Development Client Services

Email Etiquette: Think About It From Your Client’s Perspective

I just spent a couple of minutes looking for the telephone number of someone who sent me an email. No big deal, except that if it is your client’s time spent looking for your number, it is a big deal. If you do something...more

3/14/2017 - Business Development Client Services Young Lawyers

Econ 101: If You Increase Expenses More Than You Increase Revenue, Profits Will Be Lower

You just can’t make this stuff up. A recent ABA Journal article, Some law firm leaders question associate pay hikes amid tepid year, caught my eye. The Peer Monitor report stated: Firms were squeezed by a perfect storm...more

2/22/2017 - Business Development Client Services Law Practice Management

An Example of Where Elite Businesses Go, But Law Firms Fear to Tread

The title is simple enough: success = experimentation. Here is Peter Diamandis’ thesis: Today’s most successful companies, the ones that are “crushing it,” started as a series of crazy ideas, followed by experiments to...more

2/22/2017 - Business Development Client Services Law Practice Management

A Personal Reminder About the Value of Experience

On Saturday, I was sitting in my home office and I heard an episodic beeping sound that sounded like a smoke detector with a battery that needed replacing. I checked all the smoke detectors and none were chirping, so I...more

2/14/2017 - Business Development Client Services Law Practice Management

GE, Like McDonalds, is Outsourcing Some Corporate Functions. How Soon Before It Happens With Law Departments?

My last post recounted McDonalds’ creation of its own ad agency and posited the question whether bespoke law firms could be far behind. Enter GE. Yes, that GE. According to CFO.com, GE is transferring about 600 of its...more

2/8/2017 - Business Development Client Services Young Lawyers

McDonald's Creates its Own Ad Agency. Can Bespoke Law Firms Be Far Behind?

Several years ago, I was part of a proposal to a large tech company to create a custom, build-to-suit, build-to-serve law firm to handle the company’s IP work. The company showed interest, but ultimately it was too big a...more

1/31/2017 - Business Development Client Services

Prevention is the Answer to the Question of How Law Departments Can Do More With Less

According to a survey of corporate counsel at large U.S. corporations reported by Law.com, nearly 70% of law departments expect their annual operating budget to be flat or decrease in 2017. Let me say that again—nearly...more

11/15/2016 - Client Services Young Lawyers

Moving at the Speed of Business

Business moves fast. Really fast. Does your law firm keep up? If you think you do, think again. Do you think in days when your clients are operating in hours? Weeks instead of days. It is a rare law firm designed to...more

10/27/2016 - Client Services Law Practice Management

After Action Assessments: A cornerstone of prevention

Preventing legal problems from ever occurring does not happen serendipitously.  It is a matter of design, intention and execution.  In Life at the Speed of Prevention, we will devote a number of posts to the design of a...more

8/25/2016 - Client Services Corporate Counsel Professional Development Risk Assessment

Lead Change or Hang On for Dear Life

Change is. Years ago, many people debated whether the legal industry was changing. Truth be told, the debate was silly. Change is. The only question is the speed of change. It used to be slow. It took years to move from...more

8/24/2016 - Business Development Client Services Young Lawyers

“Be in the Space You Want to Be in.”

My friend John Chisholm sent me an article on why diversity programs in law firms are failing. (Talk about a small world–An Aussie sending an article from a Canadian publication to a guy in Chicago!) The article includes...more

7/28/2016 - Client Services Young Lawyers

Solving the High Cost of Litigation, Valorem Style

Litigation costs too much. Why? Because it is overburdened with process and tolerated but unnecessary excess.  And who benefits from the focus on process and needless discovery and motion practice? Lawyers.  Who designs the...more

7/27/2016 - Arbitration Client Services Dispute Resolution

Clear Writing Makes a Difference

Clear writing makes a difference. For the skeptic, we now have proof. Using 50 readability measures, the study’s authors found that by a huge amount, a more readable, easy to understand brief is more likely to prevail over a...more

7/26/2016 - Client Services Young Lawyers

Some Thoughts on the Importance of Word Choices

There are lots of articles about jargon. Apparently, people don’t read them. There are lots of articles advising people to use short, simple words. People ignore them at their peril. Calling someone a xenophobe or a...more

6/30/2016 - Business Development Client Services

The Myth of Bigger as a Strategy

Seth Godin had an insightful post in his blog today, Bigger for?. He writes about the pains of checking into a huge hotel, where no one knows your name, there is always a line at check-in and the gym is full at 5 in the...more

6/22/2016 - Business Development Client Services Cross-Selling

“It’s just $10 an hour.” Not quite.

I was having lunch with a friend a few days ago and we started talking about the legal industry’s move to pay starting lawyers $180,000 a year. Plus benefits. To me, salaries of this kind are the product of the criminally...more

6/22/2016 - Business Development Client Services Young Lawyers

AFAs Are Finally Catching On, But So Much More is Possible

Michael Rynowecer of BTI Consulting had a great, must-read post today on his Mad Clientist blog. In the post, which I strongly recommend, Michael makes these points: I get a picture of Samuel L. Jackson staring out from the...more

4/21/2016 - Alternative Fee Arrangements Client Services

“We just raise them every year.”

Great article by Sara Randazzo in today’s Wall Street Journal, Legal Fees Cross New Mark: $1,500 an Hour. Set aside the wisdom of such rates when firms provide discounts on demand and realization rates average near 80%. What...more

2/10/2016 - Client Services Legal Fees

A special note of thanks to our clients

I wrote my first blog post on April 10, 2005, and I have published 968 posts since then. To be candid, not all of the posts related to client service issues, the blog’s name notwithstanding. But a good many of the posts have...more

2/10/2016 - Client Services

Is the time coming when an innovative Law Department will custom design its law firm?

Most complain that their law firms are not meeting their needs. Some law departments bring work in-house. Some change law firms. But the problems persist. Outside the law department, companies solve this kind of problem by...more

2/3/2016 - Client Services Firm Leadership

Clients speak clearly. Are law firms hearing the message?

I recently read the 2016 Report On The State Of The Legal Market by Georgetown Law and Peer Monitor. I was struck by the clarity of the message being sent by clients, and equally struck by how law firms seem not to hear it....more

2/1/2016 - Client Services Firm Leadership Young Lawyers

A man hears what he wants to hear…

I am sure Simon and Garfunkel never thought their lyrics would find their way into the law (this line has been used by judges in their opinions, so I am not breaking new ground) but when a line fits so perfectly, it is hard...more

1/18/2016 - Client Services Young Lawyers

Leveraging Lessons Learned is Like Turning on a Light

If you learn a lesson, you are unlikely to repeat the mistake you made. Consider this like turning on a flashlight while walking around in the dark. It helps you avoid running into a piece of furniture. If you learn a lesson...more

1/15/2016 - Business Development Client Services

The Noise of Client Service

I wrote a series on Signal and Noise. The problem clients confront is that most law firms look and sound alike. When we started Valorem in 2008, no one was talking about alternative fees, no one was offering alternative fees...more

1/6/2016 - Alternative Fee Arrangements Client Services

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