4-minute read, 20-minute exercise
If you are a slave to logging on to your computer at a certain time each day and not leaving until you have produced the latest document for your latest client, when will you find the time for more productive work? The documents in your practice need to be produced without you. If they can’t, it means that you are stuck producing every document for every client and wondering how you managed to get on a spinning wheel.
Okay, so maybe it’s not only you who produces documents, but also other members of your team. It still means that producing documents is dependent on someone using their time to do it.
That’s great if you are a fan of billable hours. The more you manually produce, the more you can charge your client. If that works for you, great. Good luck!
But if you’ve already moved away from billable hours to work more productively and value your time, then you need to stop producing every document manually.
Get Comfortable Using Automated Documents
You need to get comfortable with using automated documents. Only then will you truly experience freedom from the daily grind of producing document after document.
Quality automated documents are drafted by experienced lawyers. Get to know the author and trust in their work. Ask them questions, provide your feedback. You can then trust that the automated documents have been well drafted and can be customised depending on the answers you provide to the interview questions. You can even make changes to the documents once they have been produced so you’ll always be in control of the final document. (You can even learn to automate your documents yourself, but that’s a discussion for another day. For now, focus on getting comfortable adding automated documents to your work process.)
At the moment, you probably have a few meetings, emails and phone calls with your clients before you’re ready to sit down and produce a document for them. Meetings, emails and phone calls are important to get to know your client and their situation and determine what you need to do to assist them. But do you need to spend a couple of hours producing a document for them when it could be done in significantly less time? Then add the time it takes for you to fix the formatting and make it beautiful and functional. It all adds up.
With an automated document, you can answer the online interview at any time on any device. Even answer the interview while in a meeting or on the phone with your client. In a few minutes, you’ll have a quality document that has been highly customised depending on the answers to the interview questions. Make any changes you’d like to the Word version, and you’ll have a beautiful and functional document in significantly less time than it currently takes you. Simple.
Even if you add in extra time to make further changes specific to your client, the total amount of time you’ll spend producing a document for your client is much less.
I know, I know. Change is hard. You’re too busy to try automated documents. What if you fail? But what if you successfully start using automated documents in your practice and you enjoy so many benefits?
You don’t need to stop producing every document manually. Like with any change, making small improvements consistently will lead to long-lasting positive change. It also means that you won’t feel too uncomfortable about the change.
Spend Your Precious Time More Productively
Instead of pumping out document after document for each of your matters, you could use the time you save by using automated documents to add value to your existing services. Take a look at the services you offer and see where you can add more of your time to improve your clients’ experiences with you and your practice.
Get to know your clients and their businesses on a deeper level. Be more involved in their business planning and discover more opportunities where you can assist your clients further. Your clients will appreciate that your practice is taking a more proactive approach to providing legal advice rather than waiting for your client to call you. Now that’s a valuable service.
You’ll soon discover that working productively ON your practice is so much more beneficial in the long term than working IN you practice and spinning that wheel faster and faster until you break.
Imagine waking up tomorrow and looking forward to going to work? You’ll be able to dust-off those creative business plans that you first wrote down before you got caught up on that spinning wheel. Take a look and jog your creativity.
Let’s Make That Happen, Now
Spend the next twenty minutes setting yourself in the right direction.
Save a list of all of the matters that you and your team have had over the last four months. Now go through quickly and list the main document that was produced for that matter. Now tally them up. See a pattern? How much time would have been spent producing each of those documents? Then add the time it took to fix the formatting each time. It’s scary, isn’t it?
For any documents that are produced repeatedly, you need to start using automated documents. For now, you need to start with the document that was produced the most for all of those matters.
Schedule a time for this weekend to look into using automated documents. Get to know the author, read their content and ask questions. Choose a document to start with next week. When you need to produce a document next week, use the automation document. You’ll never look back.
Support Legal offers a range of automated documents that you can use in your practice now. To access these documents and access a community group of like-minded legal professionals, join our community.