With technological advancement comes change. The NewLaw space is increasing in popularity and, as all successful businesses know, it’s no longer survival of the fittest, it’s survival of the most adaptable to the ever-changing environment.
A good friend and ex-investment banker once told me, it doesn’t pay to be first, especially in uncharted territory, but it pays to learn from the mistakes and successes of those who do go first and to adapt quickly.
This brings us to the NewLaw space. What exactly defines NewLaw, and is it any different to the traditional way of providing legal services to clients? The traditional view of lawyers is that they profit from a client’s detriment, to put it nicely, and that they are masters of shaping and structuring a client’s situation to benefit their back pocket.
These negative perceptions of traditional legal services are an opportunity for disruptive innovation by NewLaw providers.
NewLaw is all about change and will require transparency with clients and meeting their expectations, while providing value for money and alternative fee arrangements. It’s also an area where client-focused service, underpinned by digital technology, innovation, and access to lawyers, is critical.
A model that resonates with me is where the lawyer is part of the client’s operation, regardless of its size, and the legal services provided are at a reasonable fixed fee, like a secondment scenario. The relationship between the parties makes the lawyer more than a trusted advisor. The parties operate strategically, side by side, working within a predetermined budget. There are no hidden agendas or holes in the client’s back pocket.
That’s the NewLaw space that we’d love to etch into the legal services industry – authority leading by example.