Is your attorney working for you or against you?

Posted by Douglas Sorocco at April 9, 2005 02:13 PM

One of my favorite blogs for big ideas is Jim Logan’s JSLogan Blog

JSLogan is an example of the type of blog I cite in the forthcoming Rethink(IP) Aloud podcast – not in the legal realm per se, but filled nonetheless with great information and insight that can be ported over into our daily practices.

I just finished reading one of Jim’s posts entitled “Are you working for me or against me?”  Jim’s post riffs off Bob Bly’s blog post listing five industries that may have to work against the client in order to be successful. 

Jim’s post deals with business consultants but I am going to take some creative license and tweak a couple of the paragraphs:

The not-so-good lawyers want to sell you their services, regardless of whether or not you truly need their service to achieve your business purpose. These lawyers don’t define their success by achieving your purpose; they're merely concerned with selling you more tasks and billing more hours.

What if the lawyers you hired were only driven by your business purpose? What if instead of selling you endless services – tasks upon tasks – they actually solved your problems and were compensated for resolving the business issue that prompted them to be hired?

Do the lawyers you work with exist to actually solve your business problems or do you believe they secretly hope to never address your business purpose and as a result sell you more and more tasks?

All I did to these three paragraphs was replace ‘business consultant’ with ‘lawyer’ – frightening how coherent it is with such a simple find/replace isn’t it? 

Two questions I would like to pose to the blogosphere:

  • Why do clients continue to use such firms/lawyers? (Maybe Zane of Conference Calls Unlimited will take a stab at this one)
  • If you or your firm is working against your clients, why are you a lawyer in the first place? 


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