Follow these simple but effective tips to build a home-based law office that makes your firm more profitable and successful.
You may choose to work from a home office simply because you can, or for other valid lifestyle reasons. After all, it is one of the perks of being your own boss.
Once you decide to take the plunge and launch your law practice from home, the first step is to set up your new home-based workspace. Both how you set up your home office, the tools you use to make working from home more productive and the method in which you work from all have a large impact in whether or not you are able to run a profitable home-based law practice.
Follow this article to get tips on how to build, design, structure and organize your practice and home-based office to ensure you’re practice is as profitable as possible.
Get a professional address
A cheap and easy solution to this would be to sign up for a virtual office. When renting a virtual office from a provider who offers reception services as part of the package, your clients can go to the suite to drop off packages, and the law firm can receive service of process, mail and hand deliveries, whether the attorney is physically present in the office or not.
Consider a Virtual Office in an executive suite as second work location
Your home office may be perfectly adequate to roll up your sleeves and do the “dirty work” of a legal practice (drafting, legal research, telephone negotiations), but meeting clients, employees or adversaries in your home may not be practical.
Coffee shops can be one alternative, but they can be loud, and the use of public Wi-Fi may present confidentiality concerns. Libraries are quiet, but offer very little privacy and are not great places for meeting. The right virtual office provider should allow you to not only have a place to come in a get some work done, but also give you access to conference rooms where you can meet clients in a private and comfortable setting.
Set a schedule and share it
Interruptions are productivity killers. When you work from home, your family and friends can be the most frequent sources of interruption.
That’s why you need to be proactive, set a schedule and, more importantly, share it with everyone. Explain when you’ll be working. Describe how you work best: Whether that’s “You’re free to check in with me from time to time” (probably not) or “Only bother me unless someone is hurt of the house is on fire” (more likely).
Don’t assume people will automatically respect the fact that you’re working from home. They won’t.
Letting them in on your schedule and by setting the precedent when it comes to interruptions, you’ll help them to better understand.
For most people, the biggest distractions are the TV, my phone and social media. Overcoming these distractions is a matter of willpower. Keep the TV off during work hours and put your phone on “do not disturb” when I’m focused on a task. You can’t be distracted if you’re not accessible.
If you really need to focus, try using a conference room or workspace at Law Firm Suites and turn off my phone and internet.
Don’t meet clients at a coffee shop
Temporary meeting room rentals offer home-based law firms a low-cost alternative to meeting in an unprofessional and potentially unethical location such as a coffee shop. Giving off an image of professionalism and confidence.
A temporary meeting room in an executive office suite provides all the coordination necessary for a successful meeting, such as catering options and professional reception services. This allows the law firm to make the best impression with the lowest financial outlay. And more importantly, will help you to close more deals!
Whenever you work from home, one of the first things you should do it change out of those pajamas and put on some work clothes. Now we’re not saying put on a suit, but the act of getting dressed will help you get into work mode and out of lounge mode.
Even if you don’t have a client yet. There are plenty of things that need to be done each day. Getting in the right mindset will help you tackle them.
Get the right equipment
Working from home implicitly means you’re going to be doing almost all of your work online.
With that being said, some of the best tools that you should invest in are both digital and physical.
On the digital side, make sure you’re using a good practice management software, CRM and online marketing tools. These will all help your practice to grow and run smoothly.
When it comes to physical items, no matter what else you do, invest in a good computer, a good phone, and a comfortable and ergonomically correct chair. Trust us. Just think about it, when you’re uncomfortable, it’s hard to stay focused and productive.
Then you can save on other items. For example, if you use an executive suite for client meetings, you can use the copier and printing services there when going to meet with clients or if you happen to find yourself in the suite for a day.