The 3 Greatest Threats to Your Law Firm, According to John Morgan
6–7 minutes to read
If you were one of the 5,000+ committed law firm owners at the Game Changers Summit 2022, then you remember just how incredible it was to learn, grow, network, and lift each other up in the larger-than-life Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, GA.
From memorable speakers like Arnold Schwarzenegger, David Goggins, and Cy Wakeman to Jesse Cole, Camille Vasquez, and Kevin O’Leary, the lineup was the biggest the legal industry has ever seen.
But it didn’t stop with those A-list names.
John Morgan, Founder of America’s largest personal injury firm Morgan & Morgan also graced the Summit stage, and he did not disappoint.
John sat down with Crisp’s very own Michael Mogill for a fireside chat where they discussed business, friendship, competitive edge, and the greatest threats facing law firm owners in 2023 and beyond.
If you weren’t in on the secret at the time, we’re here to ensure you’re ready for what’s to come thanks to the inside information from one of the most successful law firm owners on the planet.
As according to John Morgan, the three greatest threats to legal industry are:
In this article, we’re going to explore why your firm isn’t exempt from these threats — not to mention one fourth, even more greater threat than the rest combined.
Can you handle the truth?
One of the greatest threats to the legal industry is coincidentally also one of the greatest opportunities. Technology can both equip your law firm to expand its capabilities and threaten its very existence.
While some new software developments threaten to replace lawyers and the work they do, ultimately technology can be leveraged positively to streamline your operations and give your law firm a competitive edge if you use it correctly.
In 2022 alone, 85% of legal professionals used some form of software to manage their firms. Here are a few examples of some simple ways to integrate more technology into your firm in 2023:
- Email automation: These platforms can be used to automate email campaigns and manage your email lists.
- Graphic design resources: Platforms like Canva can empower your team to create graphics for social media, websites, business cards, and much more — without being a master at Adobe Photoshop.
- Social media management platforms: There are many options for platforms to automate and schedule your social media posting. They also help you track trends to better resonate with your audience.
- Freelance marketplaces: If you need graphic designers, copywriters, data managers, or practically any other kind of service your firm may need, there is someone on a freelance marketplace that can do it for you for a fraction of the average cost.
- Accounting software: There are several accounting systems on the market that are ideal for managing your books. Be sure to do some research on all the available options to determine the best fit for your law firm.
The bottom line is that technology may be coming for your job — or it may open new doors to expand your business.
According to Forbes, they see the legal profession and the legal industry as two separate entities:
“The legal ‘profession’ refers to lawyers—their training, licensure, ethical responsibilities, client obligations, and other practice-related matters. Regulation of the profession should ensure adherence to ethical and practice standards on behalf of individual clients and society at large.
The ‘industry’ describes the inter-disciplinary, tech-enabled, one trillion-dollar global business of delivering legal services. The objectives of industry regulation should be to promote competition, encourage innovation, and allow formation of delivery models that enhance access to and improve delivery of legal services.”
These are the words from just one article — and there are plenty more just like it.
Regulation can be a huge threat to the legal industry because it has the power to stop you from practicing the way you know how. In some practice areas, regulation and mass tort reform has been stripping away many lawyers’ unique abilities to practice cases and changing the way they can bring justice to their clients.
The only way to compete with the changes coming to the industry is to run your practice like a business.
You’ll need to invest in your own learning and growth. You’ll need to hire the right team to support the growth of your business and develop a great firm culture. You’ll need to keep a pulse on your law firm’s metrics and key performance indicators. You’ll need to build a differentiated brand and establish a strong presence in your community.
You are the CEO. Invest in your team and yourself to strengthen your chances of being taken out by regulation.
There are 1.3 million lawyers in the United States.
How can you expect to stand out?
If you aren’t doing everything in your power to differentiate yourself from the market, then you have no hope of running a successful law firm.
We have the secret: differentiate your law firm with a powerful unique value proposition (UVP).
Your law firm’s UVP is what makes you stand out from your competitors. It’s what your audience remembers about your law firm. It’s what you’re known for. It’s what makes you uniquely equipped to solve your clients’ legal challenges. It needs to be clearly defined and consistently communicated throughout your law firm’s marketing efforts.
A strong UVP is the core of your brand, so you must be sure it’s easy to understand and clearly articulates what makes you different from other firms. It should be specific and easy to remember. It should also demonstrate why clients should choose your firm over others in the marketplace.
When considering what makes you different from the rest, consider the following questions to help you tell your story:
- What is the personality of your law firm’s brand?
- What matters to you? Why do you do what you do?
- How are you unlike the rest of the law firms in your market?
- Do you have morals or values that influence the way you practice?
If you don’t have a handle on what you, your team, and your firm values the most, then you aren’t going to make it far in the heavily saturated, over-competitive legal industry in 2023 and beyond.
But wait — there’s more…
While you might think there were only three threats stacked against you, John Morgan believes there’s one even greater threat — and we all face it…
The Greatest Threat of All
As hard as it might be to hear, YOU are your greatest threat.
Only you have the power to run your business like the CEO you are, hire the best team, and set your law firm up for success in the long run. If you aren’t doing everything you can to make it happen, then you won’t be successful. It’s as simple as that.
If you want to get ahead in 2023, you’ve got to become a leader worth following. People look up to and commit to someone that they respect, and if you’ve got your clients’ and teams’ respect, then there’s nothing you can’t accomplish.
Truly great CEOs create leaders out of their team members, so they keep daily operations running so the leader can focus on important decisions and moving the business forward. They empower others to run with their vision, keep the organization on track, and lead in a way that’s not solely dependent on any one person. That’s how their organizations are able to scale so effectively — and that’s how you can grow your law firm.
But it’s up to YOU.
If you’re truly ready to become a legend in the legal industry and defeat any of the obstacles that lay in your path, we can help.
Make this the year that you finally join Crisp Coach. Become a part of a closed-door community of the highest-performing law firms in the country and beyond.
Don’t let these threats scare you. You can overcome anything you set your mind to.