Ron Baker returned to the US last Friday after another successful "tour" of Australia again reaching out to professionals- and their clients- urging them to change their business model and adopt a better way of practicing their crafts.
In addition to forums held in Perth,Adelaide,Brisbane,Sydney & Melbourne, we were also fortunate to run in house programs with firms as well as again having the opportunity to meet with several general counsel, not only to hear the clients perspective, but also to show them how they can assist their external providers in moving away from pricing their services solely by time.
Ron and I continue to be amazed by the growing number of innovative and courageous individuals who are leading their professional firms down this path.They are the ones prepared to take the hits, to stand out from the crowd and be different.They are also the ones capitalizing on the first mover advantage reaping the rewards from their clients who are freed from the tyranny of the billable hour and in the case of team members the burden of the insidious timesheets.
It would be remiss of Ron and I not to publicly thank some of these people and organisations. The Law Australasia Group whom Ron again had the privilege of working with;Mal diGiulio and his team at Nexia Perth (whose offices look more like a creative agency than an accounting firm);David Vilensky and his firm at BBV Legal who have not billed by time for nearly 3 years now;the inimitable Maria Polczynski from Group Legal Bendigo and Adelaide Bank and her team for their unwavering support & forum hosting;the innovative and inspirational Matthew Burgess partner at McCullough Robertson and his band of followers at eLawyer;Michael Stewart CEO of Irish Bentley for convincing us to again visit Brisbane, for exposing us to the talent that is cartoonist Andrew Fyfe (whom I thank for the cartoons on this post) and to Vincents Accountants for event hosting;Scott Kennedy & Matthew McDonald from Curwoods Lawyers who are making the change and were not scared to open their kimonos in front of their insurer clients;Alistair Hamblyn and Jocelyn Honour from Morrows who hosted us in Melbourne; Julie Dobinson & her crew of family lawyers at DDCS; and last by by no means least David Wells & his team at Moores Legal a true Firm Of The Future who ditched timesheets 1 July 2012.
A special thankyou to our talented Verasage colleagues Tim Williams from Ignition Consulting Group who flew out from Utah and co presented with us in Sydney, and to Matt Tol of mtaoptima-another Firm Of the Future.
We also want to thank the 2013 ALPMA Summit Organising Committee for pulling off another wonderful event in Sydney ( THE peak professional association for law firm managers in Australasia ) and to Jenny Watson of david & GOLIATH Event Management in organising much of this tour.
To those that attended our forums and to those that have in the past a big, big thankyou. Just do it.
For those that are on the journey keep at it-make pricing and providing value to your clients core skills in your firm.
Finally for those firms and their external consultants and advisers that say that you can't run a firm without timesheets or you have to bill by time........