The challenge that any senior associate faces is how to still maintain their own figures AND make the time to build their own portfolio of clients. One of the best ways of starting to make some time for business development AND strengthening your personal case is delegation to more junior members of the team. The problem is many lawyers have learned to be a ‘lone wolf’, and just do their own work. Therefore, delegation doesn’t come easily or naturally. In this blog post, I explore a few easy but powerful delegation tips for lawyers to start delegating at minimal cost or risk to themselves.
1. Attendance note
The next time you are at a client meeting see if you can take a junior member of the team with you. This produces a win-win. The junior gets valuable exposure to client meetings. You get someone to take notes and complete the attendance note from the meeting. When you ask the junior to write the attendance note always give them a fairly short time frame in which to get them done. Otherwise, it may not get written up in the right time frame for you.
2. Diary management
Making time to speak to the right people in your network at the right time takes time. Time in which you could be billing or actually doing your business development. If you have access to a secretary then ask them to help you make sure you routinely have time with the people, such as introducers, who matter to you.
3. Allow plenty of review and rework time
Don’t assume that what you delegate will be done to your personal standard or right first time. Therefore, always make sure that the deadline you give to the person to do the work gives you lots of back pocket time before you need to report back to the client. This back pocket time allows for some slippage on the junior’s stated timetable, and for you to actually incorporate their work into your thinking before you go back to the client.
Delegation for senior associates is a necessity if you want to be able to free up your time to develop your business and personal case for partnership.