Regardless of your firm size, strategic planning is central to its continued success. In strategic planning you examine your firm’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats thereby taking control of the direction of your practice, instead of just reacting to changing conditions.
Strategic planning is a process whereby the following questions are considered:
- Who are we?
- Who’s out there?
- Who do we want to be?
- How do we get there?
- How are we going to execute our plan to get there?
One predictable change that affects all law firms is the retirement, death or disability of its lawyers. Have you considered the impact on your firm of one of your members dying, retiring or becoming disabled tomorrow? Do you have a succession plan in place to deal with such a contingency?If not, start thinking about one now.
If you are a sole practitioner such planning is particularly critical. Start thinking about when and how you are going to retire, as well what lawyer you would want to assist your family, staff and clients in the event of your disability or death.
The Lawyer’s Guide to Strategic Planning by Thomas Grella and Michael Hudkins and available through the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society Library & Information Services is a great resource to help get you started on your planning process.