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Attorneys - Get More Time In The Day!

Updated: Apr 23


Attorneys - Get More Time In The Day!

Time is a precious commodity for all of us, but time feels particularly rare for a busy business attorney. And we all want to be busy, right? It means business is booming!


Business attorneys often find themselves juggling multiple tasksfrom drafting contracts to representing clients in courtroomsall while managing administrative duties and staying abreast of legal developments. As the demands on their time continue to grow, finding effective strategies to reclaim valuable hours becomes paramount.



The Time-Consuming Demands of a Business Attorney:

Business attorneys operate in a dynamic and demanding environment where time is not merely a commodity but a critical asset. The nature of their work encompasses a wide array of responsibilities, ranging from providing legal counsel to negotiating complex deals and resolving disputes. Here, we delve into the intricate web of tasks that occupy a business attorney's schedule, highlighting the multifaceted demands they must navigate on a daily basis:


  • Legal Research and Analysis: Business attorneys are tasked with staying abreast of ever-evolving laws and regulations that govern various industries. Conducting thorough legal research and analysis is essential to provide accurate and effective counsel to clients, whether it involves interpreting statutes, analyzing case law, or staying informed about recent judicial decisions.


  • Drafting Legal Documents: From contracts and agreements to memoranda and legal opinions, business attorneys are constantly engaged in drafting a myriad of legal documents. Each document requires meticulous attention to detail and adherence to legal conventions, consuming significant amounts of time and intellectual energy.


  • Client Communication and Consultation: Effective communication lies at the heart of a business attorney's practice. Whether it's advising clients on legal matters, negotiating with opposing counsel, or representing clients in meetings and negotiations, business attorneys devote substantial time to maintaining clear and open lines of communication with their clients.


  • Litigation and Dispute Resolution: In the event of legal disputes or litigation, business attorneys must navigate complex legal proceedings, including drafting pleadings, conducting discovery, and representing clients in court. Litigation can be a time-intensive process, requiring careful preparation and strategic execution to achieve favorable outcomes for clients.


  • Administrative Tasks and Case Management: Beyond their legal responsibilities, business attorneys must contend with a myriad of administrative tasks, such as managing calendars, scheduling appointments, and organizing case files. Effective case management is essential to ensure that deadlines are met, documents are filed accurately, and client matters progress smoothly.


  • Continuing Legal Education and Professional Development: Staying current with legal developments and honing their skills through continuing legal education (CLE) and professional development activities is a priority for business attorneys. However, allocating time for CLE seminars, workshops, and certifications amidst their busy schedules can pose a significant challenge.


Navigating these time-consuming demands requires a delicate balance of time management, prioritization, and strategic delegation. As the workload continues to mount, business attorneys must explore innovative solutions to optimize their efficiency and productivity while maintaining the highest standards of legal professionalism.



Outsourcing Is Your Friend:

Some of these things can only be done by an experienced business attorney, and rightfully so. But what about the rest of it? The tasks that don’t require any legal training?


Outsourcing tasks to a virtual assistant offers a strategic solution for business attorneys seeking to alleviate the burden of their increasingly demanding schedules. By delegating time-consuming administrative tasks to a competent virtual assistant, attorneys can streamline their workflow, enhance efficiency, and reclaim valuable time to focus on high-priority legal matters. 


Let's explore how virtual assistants can assist with specific tasks commonly encountered by busy business attorneys:


  1. Scheduling Meetings: Managing a hectic calendar filled with client meetings, court appearances, and deadlines can be overwhelming for business attorneys. Virtual assistants can take charge of scheduling appointments, coordinating meeting logistics, and sending out reminders, ensuring that attorneys' calendars remain organized and appointments are promptly attended.

  2. Organizing Inbox: A cluttered email inbox can impede productivity and lead to missed opportunities or overlooked communications. Virtual assistants can efficiently triage emails, categorize messages by priority, respond to routine inquiries, and flag important correspondence for the attorney's attention, allowing them to focus on critical tasks without being bogged down by email overload.

  3. Onboarding New Clients: Welcoming new clients into the fold requires careful attention to detail and timely communication. Virtual assistants can assist with client onboarding processes by coordinating early communications, scheduling meetings, collecting necessary documentation, and facilitating the completion of intake forms, ensuring a seamless transition for clients and freeing up attorneys to focus on substantive legal matters.

  4. Client Communication: Maintaining regular and effective communication with clients is essential for building trust and fostering strong attorney-client relationships. Virtual assistants can serve as a point of contact for routine client inquiries, provide status updates on ongoing matters, and schedule follow-up meetings or calls, ensuring that clients feel well-informed and supported throughout the legal process while letting the attorney take point on substantial legal updates. 

  5. Invoicing: Billing and invoicing can be time-consuming tasks that detract from an attorney's billable hours. Virtual assistants can handle invoice generation, tracking billable hours, and sending out invoices to clients in a timely manner. Additionally, they can assist with tracking payments, following up on overdue invoices, and reconciling accounts, ensuring that the firm's financial operations run smoothly.

  6. Daily Admin: From managing filing systems to updating databases, virtual assistants can tackle a myriad of daily administrative tasks that consume valuable time and resources. By entrusting these responsibilities to a virtual assistant, business attorneys can focus on core legal work and strategic initiatives, maximizing their productivity and effectiveness.


All that to say… Outsourcing tasks to a virtual assistant can significantly lighten the workload for busy business attorneys, enabling them to devote more time and energy to serving their clients, pursuing business development opportunities, and advancing their professional goals. By leveraging the expertise and support of a virtual assistant, attorneys can achieve greater work-life balance, enhance client satisfaction, and position themselves for long-term success in the competitive legal landscape.


You Know The "What"... Now Let's Get Into "How":

Integrating virtual assistants into a business law practice requires some planning up front from you. Here are some steps to consider when incorporating virtual assistants into your practice:


  • Identify Tasks for Delegation: Begin by assessing your current workload and identifying tasks that can be effectively delegated to a virtual assistant. This may include administrative tasks such as scheduling appointments, managing email correspondence, and organizing documents, as well as research-related tasks, invoicing, and client communication. Prioritize tasks based on their level of complexity, time commitment, and potential for delegation. You know better than anyone what you want to take off your plate so that you can focus on other matters. 


  • Define Clear Expectations and Guidelines: Come to the table knowing what you need. When you arrive ready to work together and knowing what you need, it makes negotiations that much easier. Ensure alignment with your practice's goals and standards, and get ready to see what a virtual assistant can do. 


  • Select the Right Virtual Assistant Service Provider: Choose a reputable virtual assistant service provider that has experience in supporting legal professionals and understands the unique needs and requirements of business attorneys. You want an assistant or a team of assistants who have experience with the tasks you want to outsource, and you also want to be sure that you have good synergy working together. 



By following these steps and implementing best practices for integrating virtual assistants into your practice, you can leverage their expertise and support to enhance efficiency, productivity, and client service delivery, allowing you to focus on what matters most—providing high-quality legal representation and achieving favorable outcomes for your clients.


 

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Written by Jordan McAndrew




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