Sounds like a TV reality show, doesn’t it? Fortune Small Business (FSB) offers one makeover a month to a qualified business, and you find out more about that on the FSB site. I learned about a law firm that went through the program in an article on CNNMoney.com As a result, the Ambrose Law Group of Portland, Oregon went to flat fees (except for some aspects of complex litigation cases). The firm has gone to flat fees for transactional work, as well as some litigation work, such as filings and depositions.
According to David Ambrose the move away from the billable hour has led to more work, and that is “better for clients and better for us.” I agree with Ambrose, that clients appreciate “knowing up-front what their legal work will cost.”
I have long been a proponent (as have many others) of fixed fees, and have blogged about alternative billing arrangements in general here and here in the past. I don’t know whether the Ambrose firm was a believer before their makeover, or were persuaded because of the high-powered consultants from Fortune Small Business or not. Whatever the reason, it was a good decision.
So, is your firm one that could benefit from a makeover? The basic requirements for candidates are that you be a profitable small business and that gross revenues exceed $1 million. If you are interested in applying for a makeover, send an email (from their site) to the FSB makeover editor. You will need to “… describe your business briefly, provide your most recent and projected revenues, and explain why you think your company would benefit from a Makeover.”
Irrespective of whether your firm is selected for the program, I suggest you give serious consideration to going to flat fees anyway.