Thursday, May 8, 2008

Networking With Other Solos

A client came to me by way of referral today. The client wants a will done for his father. Of course, with liability issues and attorney-client privilege, I insisted that I be in touch with the father. The son told me that his father lived in Oakland and that my office in San Jose was too far for him to come down to.

No problem, I said. At that point, I reached out to my network and found office space that I could borrow for half an hour.

In solo practice, networking can be your best tool. It pays to get to know as many solo attorneys as possible. For starters, you can get overflow work from overburdened attorneys. Most significantly, though, you gain a support system and can call on other solos when you need some help. I've come to know quite a few other solo practitioners over the past eight months. Of these attorneys, one is an employment attorney who traded firm life for the solo practice life so that she could have time to enjoy life and to take the types of cases that she wanted to take. She currently shares my office space. Another attorney I got to know in the past few months was a more experienced woman who has been practising family law for over fifteen years. She often shares insight with me and has never hesitated to nudge me in the right direction, as needed.

As for the client I spoke to today, I told him that I would call his father back and let him know where in Oakland I could meet him. By the end of the evening, I already had permission to use the office of another solo attorney whom I recently met.

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