Verticals to Explore for Leading a Successful Law Firm

Interlegal Permanent Officer

Interlegal Permanent Officer


Whether setting up a new law firm or trying to scale up an existing law firm, creating a successful practice is not a piece of cake. It is also not easy to substantiate success as this is a very subjective term and people have different notions of success. Success is measured in various verticals in a law firm just as in any other business ranging from courtroom practice to practice development at any law firm.

Success cannot be a linear path for any law firm and a firm might undergo several twists and turns, endure a period of great successes and not so successful time as well. But as they say; ‘Rome was not built in a day’, similarly establishing a successful law firm is not a one day task but takes years of strategic lanning and enforcement before one realises what actually works for them. To maximize any firm’s growth potential, we discuss some critical avenues where a law firm must invest in order to put the firm on the right path to success. 

Three Critical Investments Law Firm Partners Need to Make to Succeed

Besides having a strong base for capital investment, lawyers need to have right connections and shared relationships with lawyers that can help provide the initial human capital in the form of knowledge and skills. In addition to this, the other critical investments that a law firm needs to make in order to succeed are as follows: 

1. A firm vision on initial practice area development

This is essential! One doesn’t want to build a law firm that takes whatever comes in through their door. Choosing a few key practice areas and sticking to the same would not just enhance the skillset of the team but also make them the preferred choice for those particular practice areas over a period of time. Unless one has extensive capital to onboard experienced talent to develop a practice area and significant clients in that particular practice area, it doesn’t make much sense to putting an expert resource into general corporate legal work. Having one or two areas of focus for your practise is the best way to get started.  This also protects a growing firm from becoming a competition for many thus less flake in the industry and getting a strong referral network. It is also suffice to say that sufficient experience and knowledge in the field in which one wishes to practise cannot be simply replaced. Some areas are easier to break into for a law firm than others. For example, no client would want an inexperienced team to handle a case involving his life. 

One must understand and endure their own strengths and weaknesses, as well as whether the clients in the chosen field will acknowledge the firm. 

2. Office Place and related requisites 

A law firm has to necessarily invest in an office location that is strategically located in a good geographic location. Although an accessible location which is also a good location from a business perspective can be slightly heavy on the purse, the clientele that it will attract will make the cost worthwhile. The practise area a law firm intends to establish itself has a lot to do with the ideal location. Before choosing a location or office space that best suits the requirements of the law firm, consider all viable options and evaluate what suits best. One might also prefer to work from home initially, rent a place, or even share an office. It is also prudent to share resources, save money, and lessen the alienation of working alone by sharing an office space to begin with. One will definitely require office supplies, furniture, and equipment in order to set up an office, including printers, computers, a business phone, files, furniture for reception areas and for the staff. 

The importance of a good location cannot be stressed enough. The reason is that law is primarily a service industry and a good geographic location is the first impression that a client has of a particular law firm. A good location is not just a location that is easily accessible; the buildings, offices and the surroundings play a vital role in the overall impression the law firm might create. 

This might be intimidating as a process and thus guidance from lawyers that have their own established law firms can go a long way in easing the process for you. Being associated with legal network can eradicate several such challenges initially as one will help assistance and experience of several law firms globally. 

3. Business Development and Founding Partners 

Most Law firms fail to understand the importance of a good business strategy. It is a lawyer’s job to execute the work and strategists’ job to provide enough mental space for a lawyer to efficiently execute the work. A strategist plays a vital role in any organisation right from the experience in managing resources till operations and communications that go out in the name of the firm. Having a strategist that aligns with the law firm’s vision can help the firm grow leaps and bounds. 

It is also critical to have a good business model in place for attracting good clientele. Most law firms lack a formal mechanism for assisting partners in acquiring the crucial business development skills that they might require to continue supporting themselves and others. Business development assist in active management of relationships through a process that includes visual identity, personal branding, persuading with authenticity, and enhancing collaboration. The brand image serves as the cornerstone of one’s go-to-market strategy as a law firm and should outline the goals, techniques, key core values and strategies that will help the firm actualize on the personal branding of its partners and thus attract new clients. Networking is the uncontested method to broaden the visibility for any law firm and for the same, they can choose to become part of legal communities such as Interlegal.

By deepening and broadening the services a firm offers, one will be able to convert one-time clients into clients for life as well. Furthermore, it is essential to deliver services of the quality that the existing clients would want to become advocates for the law firm’s services amongst their circle. Achieving this requires exceptional communication skills as well as emotional intelligence. This is why the resources that one chooses to work with as a partner in a law firm will be the most critical deciding factor on the growth trajectory of the firm. 

Having said that, be assured that as intimidating as it might seem, all it takes is some strategy and strong will. Potential clients usually are community members. Each case that one might take impacts the community in some way or the other thus impacting the potential clients therefore, it makes more sense to be invested into the same. 


1. Can I start a law firm right after graduation? 

Yes, you can start a new law firm right after college. There are many lawyers who started on their own and are well known in the industry right now. Please refer to Interlegal to see the list of some flourishing law firms globally.

2. Is it mandatory to have more than one partner in a law firm?

It is not mandatory to have more than one partner in a law firm but collaborating is often helpful to increase efficiency in long term.

3. Is law firm a company?

Law firm is a partnership and is often registered as an LLP or a firm under the partnership laws of countries. 

4. Can a law firm have branches in different countries?

Law is a very regulated industry and thus this depends on the domestic regulation of each country.

5. Can I have foreign partners in my law firm?

Yes, the partners that you want to engage in your law firm is your complete discretion and there is no regulation on that.

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