In the past few posts I have been sharing with you my work as a faculty member at the Managing Partner Forum in St Louis. The highlight… Managing Partner Idea Exchanges. They are insightful conversations among the Managing Partners that gives everyone valuable ideas to take back to their firms.  Aviva Cuyler from JDSupra and I facilitated the small firm group that included firms of up to 40 lawyers.

VISION & STRATEGY. We discussed the various ways that Managing Partners have had success getting started and here are the top five:

  1. Think about your vision. Where do you want to be in 5 years? Tomorrow?
  2. Set time aside to think about your vision & strategy… plan to plan.
  3. Consult with others.
  4. Set goals that are concrete, simple and easy to communicate (it should fit on an index card).
  5. Understand your position in the marketplace.

Generally the hardest part of any task is getting started and I think our group came up with a good list of things to consider as you embark on your strategic plan. I think there are two items here that are key. The first is – make your strategy simple to communicate… so concise that it could fit on an index card. I know this is a tall order for lawyers… but could be the difference between full engagement of the firm OR not. The second is – understand your position in the marketplace. This is often overlooked, many firms get so caught up in what is good for the firm that they forget to look at the situation from the outside looking in. So, when considering a strategic plan these are two critical steps that could ensure success… good luck!