John Chisholm joined me to discuss his experiences of helping firms create firms of the future. John is a fellow of the Verasage Institute and also a third generation lawyer who prior to his current consulting firm has help senior executive positions in leading Australian legal and accounting firms for more than 17 years.
In this discussion we discuss what a firm of the future, why value pricing is a must, and other opportunities particularly for the professions. However we have a great chat about John’s dad who just had a birthday and the values and life of a lawyer from many years ago.
John has been helping particularly law firms from 2005 to create the firm of the future. A firm of the future is one which is not basing its activities on time but rather value. It is a firm that does not treat its people as machines but rather creates an environment where everybody wants to be.
John at the end of 2013 put together a wishlist of which I copied a few (the rest are found on his website)
- at long last that hourly billing is best left to the oldest profession in the world,
- that timesheets are self evidently insane and are huge innovation killers,
- that when the Creator invented management structures partnerships were towards the bottom of the league table-not the top,
- that all customers are not equal and do not want to be treated equal,
- your people are not your greatest assets-you don’t own them- but they are the most untapped resource you will ever have,
- that the better firms do the simple things consistently well,
- that when firms’ internal measurement and reward systems are changed to encourage, rather than discourage,true collaboration, the world is their oyster,
- there was a reason Martin Luther King Jnr said “I have a dream” and not “I have a business plan”- no one follows business plans.
- finding your “WHY” is more important than knowing WHAT you do or HOW you do it (thanks Simon Sinek)
As I mentioned above the conversation with John about his fathers experience as a lawyer with Maddocks was excellent I think we sometimes forget the lessons we can learn from our elders. We covered the values from his era and also the practices of legal practices then.