The Link to The E-Myth Attorney

We're in Colorado Springs today to give a seminar on Success, E-Myth Lawyering Principles, and Business Economics for the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys at their annual Fall Workshop. There have been tons of great tips and advice on the business of lawyering during this two day workshop, from some of the best business minds in law,  and we're honored to have been invited to speak.

Michael Gerber, author of the remarkable E-Myth series of classic business books, and the publisher, John Wiley & Sons, have graciously allowed us to distribute a free copy of two of the chapters from The E-Myth Attorney as part of our presentation at the workshop. These two chapters will give you a taste of why we have said that this is the best book on the business side of lawyering ever to come along.

Workshop attendees can get your free copy of the two EMyth Attorney book chapters by clicking on this link:

Click the link and print your copy today. This link will go "dead" within the next few days and after that you'll have to go to your local bookstore or order your copy of the book online. As we've said before, it's a great read and well worth it. Those who attended the NACBA Fall Workshop were lucky to have learned that the great folks at BKExpress, one of the conference exhibitors, brought a hundred free copies of the E-Myth Lawyer as a surprise give away for workshop attendees. Still, click on the link and read your free chapters today.

Ron Burdge
Helping lawyers helping clients
for over 30 years


Cases You Should Not Take - Great Article Worth Reading

Ever wondered whether or not to take on a case that you weren't sure about? Susane Robicsek, an experienced bankrutpcy attorney from North Carolina posted a great article on Bankruptcy Cases Not Taken, posted on the Bankruptcy Mastery web site (click here) on exactly this topic.

Although her post deals with bankruptcy cases, the rules of the road that she discusses are universal and well-learned.

The article byline says a lot too: the cases not taken are the ones that can keep you in business.

If you have doubts about a case nagging at you, don't accept the case until you read her article. Lots of good wisdom here and the rules are universal. It's clear that she, like so many other attorneys, learned the lessons the hard way. Read her article now and maybe you can avoid the hard road to travel too.

Ron Burdge
Helping lawyers helping clients.

A Guy Searches Google - 2 result comparisons tell the whole story

Gyi Tsakalakis, is co-founder of AttorneySync Law Firm Internet Marketing, and has a great post on the importance of spreading your info across various sources on the internet in order maximize the points where you can be accessed by a potential client who is looking for a local attorney.

And his two comparisons is not far off the mark either.

There is no question that any attorney who wants to rise above the everyday internet buzz is an attorney who needs to frequently be online with all the sources that are out there for that purpose, and there are lots of them.

If you haven't claimed your Avvo profile, go do it.

If you haven't set up a Google's Places listing for your firm, go do it.

If you haven't claimed your your JDSupra profile, go do it.

Those three are a minimum - and you should check out the AttorneySync article for even more tips - click here.

Ron Burdge
Helping Lawyers Helping Clients.
Since 1978.


Burdge to address National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys in Colorado

The National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys will have its national workshop in Colorado Springs at the end of this month and topics will cover the range of consumer bankruptcy issues facing attorneys nationally.

The fall workshops are an annual opportunity for consumer bankruptcy lawyers to get in-depth education and training on bankruptcy law issues from some of the nation's experts and most experienced attorneys.

This year's two-day workshop will feature courses designed for new attorneys and paralegals as well as a more advanced track on complex bankruptcy law issues. NACBA will also feature a special series on the business of practicing law for consumer bankruptcy lawyers and we are grateful to have been invited to speak for two hours before the group.

Most attorneys are not business-minded individuals and have little, if any, business experience. Law school teaches the law, as we all know, but most of them don't teach how to run a law practice as a business. We will fix that problem in Colorado by discussing the E-Myth principles of Michael Gerber's business classics and how they can apply to the business of practicing law. Fueled by a desire to help and serve consumers just when they need it most, many consumer law offices in today's economic climate face economic and business problems of their own as they struggle to achieve business success in their law practice. While they know the law and are trained to use it to help consumers, the business of practicing law requires a different mind set and skill and we'll be talking about those and how to achieve them.

As part of that lecture series, there will be a special discussion revealing the one unknown secret of economic success that is either unknown or disbelieved by struggling entrepreneurs (and that includes lawyers) everywhere - but it works. After spending more than a decade researching business principles and philosphies, including conversations, meetings, and analyses from a broad spectrum of successful people - including business operators, economists, lawyers, philantropists, doctors - and eventually even a one-on-one meeting with an esteemed neurosurgeon on the applicable brain chemistry and the neuro and medical aspects of business success, we'll explain what it this secret is  and some of the scientific and medical evidence that proves this business secret works.

Other topics at the NACBA conference will include fundamentals, the mortgage mess, the means test, escrow payment issues, BAPCPA's TRAP-C-PA, balancing a business, using technology, and mastering all aspects of the bankruptcy process. The two days of lectures, workshops and discussions will feature speakers from all over the country and will be attended by lawyers from all over the country.

Ron Burdge
Helping lawyers help people, for over 2 years


Managing your online reputation - the first step is the easiest.

In the "lawyer business" reputation is critical to success - perhaps more than any other profession or business venture in these economic times. So, how do you monitor your reputation? It's easy for people to talk about you online - and easy for you to take the first step to monitor what they are saying too.

Check out Google Alert to get free alerts by email whenever your name is mentioned online anywhere. It's easy. You just tell it the email address to send the alerts to along with those phrases that you want to hear about when they show up online.

Obviously, list as many variations of your law practice name and your personal name as you can.

Set the frequency of alerts - daily or less often? And then sit back and wait. Anytime one of your keyward terms is used online, you'll get an email alert from Google that gives you the link to that spot so you can check it out.

Google Alert can also be used to keep tabs on others too, like the opposing counsel in a hotly disputed case - or their client when their name shows up online from asset transfers or sales or any of a hundred financial or business transactions that could affect your case.

Google Alert is the easiest way to monitor anything on the internet that you want to know about - whether it is your own reputation or deeper, background info that may get posted about someone else.

It's the first step to take to protect yourself from unfair and misleading slander and online disparagement - and one that every business professional should take. And when I hit the "return" key in a minute, I'll get an email about this post, too.

Ron Burdge
Helping lawyers helping clients, for over 30 years.

Communicating with your Jury is critical in closing argument

Use passion
At different stages of a trial, the trial attorney gets to directly address the Jury, but you have to mindful of the indirect communication that is constantly occurring throughout the trial between the attorney and the Jury. Today we'll talk about the importance of the communication that occurs in closing argument.

Your closing argument started to be written with your Intake interview, right? If not, it should have so always do it that way from now on. Making notes along the way is so much easier than waiting until the night before your closing argument occurs. The key facts never change anyway. And your last minute time can be better used directing and finessing what you already had outlined.

Of course, since you started off in opening by telling the jury what you were going to prove, now is the time to tell the jury how you proved it. And, of course, what the other side did not prove.

Replay the opening promises of each side again and contrast where it was met by you and not your opponent. You don't need to harp on every aspect, but you certainly want to pound home your points on the important issues.

And where it is possible, use the defendant’s evidence that favors your side of the case. Point out statements from your opponent's witnesses and inferences from their evidence and direct support for your case that can be found in your opponent's own case.

Consider replaying video testimony from the trial during your closing - it is extremely powerful.

Also, work the jury instructions into your argument. You should have learned what instructions the judge is going to give the jury so fashion points in your argument around key aspects that the judge will instruct on anyway.

And most of all, be passionate as you tell the story of why your client should win and explain the damages question in plain everyday language and tell the jury what you want them to do. There's no point in letting them wonder about just how much it is that you want.

If you get a rebuttal argument, remember that rebuttal is really rebuttal plus another chance at closing argument. So use it wisely and precisely. It is not a time to do it all over again - it is a chance to point out the errors in your opponent's closing that they just heard and to remind them of why your side is right and why your side should win.

Finally, at the end, always thank the jury. What they are doing in your case is what makes the legal system work and they will never be thanked enough for it.

At each stage of the closing, they will be watching everything you do and listening to everything you say. Your communication will occur not just with words but also with your mannerisms, your body language, your style, and your content. Everything matters, so do it right and with passion.

And remember that your communication with the jury starts before you think it does and ends after you thought it already had. Use every moment of it to your advantage.

Ronald L. Burdge
Helping lawyers help clients for over 25 years.