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Meet the CoreLegal team - the one-stop services shop for solicitors and barristers.

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It takes time to find a reliable outsourcing firm. With all the pressures they are under, solicitors need a “one stop shop” support organisation to reduce their administration to a team they can trust. Cue: CoreLegal.

CoreLegal meet periodically as a round table to discuss how we can help legal firms to compete. The small firms may never ‘match the big guys’ in terms of weight, but we want to help them operate at a higher level so that their size and operational efficiency actually becomes an advantage.

This booklet brings together some inspiring stories plus tips and advice to help you improve the performance of your legal practice. We hope these examples from our legal support professionals will encourage you to make the next steps, on your way to raising your game, and to contact us in the strictest of confidence, if there is anything that you need help and support on.

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Meet the CoreLegal team - the one-stop services shop for solicitors and barristers.

  1. 1. Inspiring stories fromlegal supportprofessionalsIntroducing CoreLegal - Meet The Team Do you have a nightmare of non-legal, non-productive, problems eating into your time and temper? Imagine how good life would be if you could only concentrate on being a successful lawyer. Let us tell you about our great services for solicitors and barristers....
  2. 2. The ‘One Stop Shop’ PrincipleThe Legal Profession is facing uncertain times and itis important to keep up, or you will be left behind.small firms have never been under so much pressure.they need to keep overheads down and yet continueto perform to a very high standard.It takes time to find a reliable outsourcing firm. Withall the pressures they are under, solicitors need a “onestop shop” support organisation to reduce their ad-ministration to a team they can trust. cue: coreLegal. CoreLegal meet periodically as a round table to discuss how we can help legal firms to compete.The small firms may never ‘match the big guys’ interms of weight, but we want to help them operateat a higher level so that their size and operationalefficiency actually becomes an advantage. CoreLegal events are an ideal way to meet us all at once.This booklet brings together some inspiring storiesplus tips and advice to help you improve the perform-ance of your legal practice.We hope these examples from our legal support pro-fessionals will encourage you to make the next steps,on your way to raising your game, and to contact usin the strictest of confidence, if there is anything thatyou need help and support on. find out more atwww.corelegal.net or email info@corelegal.net www.corelegal.net IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs
  3. 3. ForewordLegal people, whilsthaving a splendid Contentsknowledge of the law profiles of the coreLegal team– sometimes don’thave all the skills Caroline Newmannecessary to run a coach, consultant, trainersuccessful practice. Networking and contacts are important! Dave Mort solicitors researchmarketing the firm, keeping the books, growing thebusiness, etc; I’ve learned that you can’t do things Irene Danso & Lisa Newtonby yourself. You need a team of good people around Legal cashiers / Bookkeepersyou. this is where core Legal can help you. Jason Cobinel The Core Legal members are all experts in their Insurance respective fields. If you require help in any area outside your own main expertise of law – then Jon Hepburn please do get in touch with us. marketing consultantl We are a group of legal support providers who Justin Locke have come together to save solicitors time and to practice & case management system offer them an alternative. Martin Bacon &l If finding reliable, cost effective, professionals Allen Sternstein who understand your needs and maintain your It systems standards has always been difficult - core Legal aim to make it much easier. Ray Fox practice mergers, sales & Valuationsl This booklet gives you a little bit of background about the members of Core Legal – told in their Tom Worner own words. coach & soft skills trainerLisa Newtonentrepreneur & founding member IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs
  4. 4. Caroline NewmanYears in the game: 8 as a coach, 12 as a solicitorBusiness: training, coaching, consultingwww.lawdacity.comcaroline@lawdacity.comLawdacity™ was founded by solicitor Caroline Caroline’s Top TipsNewman LLM, the author of Legal Gold. she is acertified neuro Linguistic practitioner trainer and l Become an elite rainmakermaster practitioner and a certified personal, Business to be successful you must haveand executive coach. she is a licensed Life success a full book of business. an eliteconsultant and an international professional speaker. rainmaker mindset is simply the expansion of your value propo-Following a successful career which included senior sition and awareness into thepositions in local government and the charity sector, relationships and assets that al-caroline became a solicitor with sJ Berwin LLp and ready exist within your businesslater set-up her own successful law practice. since and sphere of influence.2004, she has been coaching and consulting with You already have what yousolicitors and barristers wanting more success in their need to build a dynamic andlives and helping them reach their goals. profitable book of business; you just have to leverage your exist-Caroline has worked with thousands of lawyers ing assets for the opportunitiesand previous clients include the Legal services that await you.commission. caroline was an elected member of thecouncil of the Law society of england and Wales for l get to Know your clients andseveral years and chair of its diversity and equality your employee’s Interests, mo-committee. she has won awards for entrepreneur- tivations, and desiresship and for services to the Legal profession. By knowing your clients’ and employees’ real motivations and desires, you’ll be able toWhat’s the biggest challenge you’ve seen a solicitor give them what they want in aface? the biggest challenge facing a solicitor is being consistent and memorable way.de-equitised from a firm they helped to establish. l create an irresistible offer toWhat makes a solicitor leave the profession to decide the correct target market.to become a guru / coach?I decided to become a consultant and coach tolawyers because I felt I could make a real differenceto the lives of people who were struggling. IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs
  5. 5. Dave MortYears in the game: 22Business: research/client satisfaction surveys for Law firmswww.legallybetter.co.ukdave.mort@legallybetter.co.ukDavid Mort formed IRN Research (trading name of David’s Top TipsIRN Consultants Ltd) in 1991. Irn has a strong trackrecord in running client satisfaction surveys and l don’t treat market research as amarket research projects (e.g. surveys of specific luxurymarkets, competitor reports etc) for law firms and It is a key part of the businesssolicitors. Innovative law firms know that these planning process... and the firstsurveys not only measure client satisfaction but can place to start is with existingidentify other client demands and highlight possible clients.new sales opportunities. l Budget sensiblyIRN is also a partner in a new web site www.legally- research fees vary from hundredsbetter.co.uk enabling law firms to put their reputation to thousands of pounds so youonline by using their client feedback to reach a wider don’t have to make a big hole inpotential audience. your budget. But be realistic, don’t cut corners, and use a mar- ket research society member.What’s the biggest challenge you’ve seen a solicitorface? Legal market liberalization, regulatory upheaval, l act on research findings andand increased competition, mean that the biggest maybe use it for prchallenges have still to come …. but forward-thinking don’t let research results gatherand flexible law firms will survive. dust … act on key research find- ings whether you like the resultsdo you work alone? no, we have a team of experi- or not! If appropriate, use anyenced researchers, interviewers, and project man- non-confidential results for pr &agers not only in the uK but also overseas. publicity about your firm.What’s it like to work with solicitors? sometimes frus-trating, sometimes enlightening – contrary to somepublic perceptions not all solicitors are the same.How have you overcome any obstacles that you’vefaced? Hard work, talking to others, revisiting andadapting the services we offer to changing marketconditions. IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs
  6. 6. Irene Danso & Lisa NewtonYears in the game: 22 & 8 respectivelyBusiness: Legal cashiers/Bookkeepingwww.boogles.orgadmin@boogles.orgLisa Newton formed Boogles Ltd – a bookkeeping Boogles Top Tipsservice in 2004, in the same month that shegraduated from university. over the years, Boogles l check the credentials of yourhad an increasing number of enquiries from solicitors cashierwho wanted their books to be done. seeing an many cashiers are operating asopportunity to become leaders in this niche sector, one-man bands, or they’re ItLisa teamed up with Irene danso to run the legal people who are chancers. Knowbookkeeping arm. who you’re dealing with.Irene Danso, a Legal Cashier for over 20 years has l Have systems in placeworked in a variety of different sized law-firms and has good systems reduce yourbeen instrumental in the setting up of and improve- chances of breaching the solici-ment of accounts departments. tors accounts rules (sars). l Have a budgetWho has been the greatest inspiration to you? try and budget for items. andWarren Buffet, robert Kiyosaki & oprah Winfrey. keep money set aside for a rainy day and for your Vat bill.What’s the biggest challenge you’ve seen a solicitorface? corrupt cashiers who’ve breached the Law so-ciety’s rules left, right & centre – and then disap-peared. switched off their phone and that was that.do you work alone? no, we have a team of over 20bookkeepers who we supervise and to whom we pro-vide support.What’s it like to work with solicitors? challenging. IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs
  7. 7. Jason CobineYears in the game: 22Business: Insurancewww.cobinecarmelson.comjason@cobinecarmelson.comJason Cobine has helped hundreds of businesses - Jason’s Top Tipssole practitioners, managing partners, LLp’s, manag-ing directors and charities in London and the home l check what isn’t covered.counties get their insurance claims paid. arranging don’t be blinded by features youinsurance correctly, being available when clients need may never need.help and updating policies avoids insurance disputes. always call your insurance claims helpline before you need it.Typically clients may already have insurance but check how they respond whenaren’t 100% certain that it’ll pay out. Jason has devel- you most need help.oped a unique process that provides clients with re-assurance that they have the right cover. this protects l check if your policy pays for allclients income and reputation. the defence costs the excess may catch you out.Who has been the greatest inspiration to you? my l Jason’s parting thoughtcousin who has fought more than five bouts of “It’s not the strongest or thedifferent types of cancer whilst supporting a wife with fittest who survive. It’s thosems – still going strong and will not lie down. with the capability to adapt.” I can’t remember who wrote thatWhat’s the biggest challenge you’ve seen a solicitor yet I adapt.face? failure of a claims department to answer aquery about a possible claim in good time leading toincreased costs for the solicitor.do you work alone? I have outsourced things I’m notgood at, so I spend most of my time with clients,prospects and introducers.What made you join core Legal? collaboration issomething I love and teaming up with other servicelead businesses means I can learn from everyone else. IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs
  8. 8. Jon HepburnYears in the game: 22Business: marketing consultantwww.fedoraconsultancy.co.ukjon@fedoraconsultancy.co.ukJon is the founder of The Fedora Consultancy, a spe- Jon’s Top Tipscialist provider of marketing and business develop-ment services for law firms. previously Jon worked as l existing clients are your gold-marketing and sales manager for an after-the-event mine.insurance company, dealing with a wide range of law they’re your customers, get infirms. touch. Build a dialogue with them and maximise your reputa-the impact of the clementi review (and subsequent tion.Legal services act) led Jon to establish fedora, spe-cialising in advising law firms (particularly smaller l get involved!ones). online legal services are here now – it’s additional business, soHe is a member of the chartered Institute of market- get involved!ing and a chartered marketer with over 20 years ex-perience within a variety of marketing disciplines. l HoW you communicate... ... is as important as WHat you communicate technical excel-What’s the biggest challenge you’ve seen a solicitor lence alone is not enough.face? the real impact of the Legal services act is justaround the corner…What made you join core Legal?a meeting of like minds, exchanging ideas and helpingsolicitors meet the many challenges ahead.What’s it like to work with solicitors? rewarding,challenging – worth the effort. occasionally anexpression containing the words ‘horse’ and ‘water’comes to mind…How have you overcome any obstacles that youfaced? determination. I am passionate about thepower of good marketing practices. IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs
  9. 9. Justin LockeYears in the game: 30Business: case & practice management softwarewww.selectlegal.co.ukjustinl@selectlegal.co.ukJustin has so far enjoyed thirty years supplying legal Justin’s Top Tipssoftware with major suppliers to the private and cor-porate legal sector. He joined steve dixon and mike l It’s a people thingcraven , the co-owners/directors of select Legal sys- When choosing a legal softwaretems in february 2010 since when we have increased supplier, yes of course the soft-the user base by 105% and expanded the LaWfusIon ware has got to be spot on, buthosted service in a secure, Iso 27001 accredited data- think about the people you arebase. buying from and their values and expertise. make sure there is syn- ergy between your orgnanisationWho has been the greatest inspiration to you? and theirs and that you actuallymike Jones, a white water canoeing explorer and doc- like and trust them–you are goingtor who canoed down everest and was leader of sev- to be working closely with themeral first river descents - he was always ready to help for several years to come.beginners and lived life to the full. l consider the cloudWhat’s the biggest challenge you’ve seen a solicitor When your hardware (mainface? Being entrepreneurial while at the same time servers) are next up for renewalproviding excellent client service - getting the balance you should consider the cloud forright is a challenge for most solicitors. a hosted option. select Legal, al- though a legal software supplierWhat’s the biggest challenge to success that law firms for 20 years, was one of the firstface? the ever changing goal posts, in terms of the to offer a hosted version of theirregulations and compliance requirements they face software. select offer both op-before they can start to earn a living. tions – a traditional ‘on-premise’ installation or a ‘hosted’ installa- tion and they will help you work out which is right for you. IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs
  10. 10. Martin Bacon/Allen SternsteinYears in the game: 19Business: It managed services and consultancywww.parachuteit.co.ukallen.sternstein@parachuteit.co.ukMartin Bacon the MD of the company, has over 12 Parachute’s Top Tipsyears management experience in the IT industry;having held senior roles in sales and technical capac- l competition is healthyities. Working with parachute It’s many clients across If you have something valuable,the legal profession; he knows the complexities and what others want - grow, nur-challenges of the sector, its people and their needs. ture and protect it. Work it to your advantageAllen Sternstein is a senior business systems and ICTprofessional with over 15 years’ experience in a l opt for informed decision makingrange of business sectors in the uK and europe. since resist paralysis by analysis2003, he has worked for legal firms on businessdevelopment, management and Ict matters; involving l exploit uncertaintywork with the Law society, sra, Lsc, Lexcel and the raise your probability of successInformation commissioners office.What’s the biggest challenge you’ve seen a solicitorface? developing profitable business in a fast-chang-ing competitive, regulatory and digital world and de-livering outstanding customer satisfaction.Is it just you two? no. We have a team of qualified Itand digital communications managers and technicalservices staff in the uK and overseas and a networkof trusted specialists and advisors.What’s it like working with solicitors? as interestingand rewarding as working with other groups, but weget stretched more; intellectually. IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs
  11. 11. Ray FoxYears in the game: 17Business: practice mergers, sales and Valuationswww.bottomlineconsultancy.commerger@corelegal.netRay had been a regular client of numerous law firms Ray’s Top Tipsand when they heard he was about to start the Bot-tom Line consultancy in 1994 they seemed to get very l Have an exit strategyexcited about having the former Legal director of dun How are you planning to step+ Bradstreet working for them as a consultant. away from the firm you’ve built up over the years, when you re- tire?In the beginning, what type of work were you doingfor your clients? l make a decision!We were generating commercial clients for law firms. You might get it wrong. ButI was appalled at how bad law firms were at running procrastination is not healthy fortheir businesses. they had no idea where clients came business.from - it was like talking to 8 year olds about wherebabies came from - maybe the stork brought them!! l enjoy the journeyWhat is your experience of working with solicitors?perhaps its my background in psychology, but I foundthat many seemed to have similar personalities -so many were introspective, introverted, runningisolated businesses, keeping their heads down belowthe parapet, dotting is & crossing ts, etc. then it hitme - when a law firm has a problem, they dont haveanybody to go to for help.How has your consultancy developed?over the years, weve become the largest broker oflaw firms in the uK and probably the only consultancyoffering advice on practice valuations having workedfor a total of 520 law firms in all, with about 260involving practice mergers, sales and Valuations. IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs
  12. 12. Tom WornerYears in the game: 10Business: soft skills training/coaching to lawyerswww.profirma.co.uktom@profirma.co.ukProFirma was founded by Tom Worner. Tom is a qual- Tom’s Top Tipsified solicitor (currently non-practising), and he hasworked both in private practice, specialising in com- l differentiate yourselfpany commercial law, and in-house (for a household find your niche in the legalname electrical equipment manufacturer). tom services industry, and developco-founded his own law firm in 2008, before exiting and raise your profile/brandin 2011 to set up profirma. the law firm still exists, within itand continues to trade. l Build strong, lasting client rela-Tom is hugely interested in the business/ commercial tionshipsside of running and growing law firms, and in how provide each and every clientlegal services are marketed, sold and delivered. with an extraordinary serviceprofirma exists – through its training and coaching and experience – earn their trustprogrammes – to help law firms and individual and loyalty, and build strong,lawyers stand out and succeed in this new era of legal lasting relationships with themservices, with more leads, clients and greater revenue. l develop the right soft skills... ...in marketing, sales, businessWhat makes a solicitor leave the profession to be- development, client relationshipcome a coach / guru? a huge interest in the busi- management, business manage-ness/commercial side of running and growing law ment, and so on – to stand outfirms, and in helping law firms and individual lawyers and prosper in this new era ofachieve the successes they desire. these are exciting legal servicestimes for the legal services industry.What is your experience of working with solicitors?challenging, exciting, emotional, inspiring, madden-ing, satisfying – all in one, big bundle!What’s the biggest challenge to success that solicitorscurrently face? It’s to quickly adapt to this new era oflegal services, which is seeing new and exciting en-trants, and therefore increased competition. IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs
  13. 13. CoreLegalCPD SeminarsOne of the best ways toimpart our knowledge inour specialist subjectareas, has been to hostseminars for the legalprofession.We’ve run various eventson topical themes such ascoLps and cofas, How togrow your practice andhave forthcoming eventson social media for lawfirms amongst others.after our seminars, we liketo provide time for thedelegates to network withour speakers afterwards. Pictures opposite from our eventsIf you’d like to be in-cluded on our mailing listand kept informed of thenext CPD seminar dateand topic, please emailus: info@corelegal.net IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs
  14. 14. Useful Linksl Barristers - www.newsquarechambers.co.ukl delia Venables – www.venables.co.ukl Legal complaints service - www.legalcomplaints.org.ukl the Institute of Legal cashiers – www.ilca.org.ukl the Institute of Legal executives - www.ilex.org.ukl the Institute of Legal secretaries & pas - www.institutelegalsecretaries.coml the Institute of para Legals -www.mylegalcareer.org.ukl the Law society – www.lawsociety.org.ukl the sole practitioners group - www.spg.uk.coml the solicitors regulations authority - www.sra.org.uk CoreLegal House, Hurst Cottage, Bottle Square Lane, Radnage, Buckinghamshire, HP14 4DP www.corelegal.net Tel: 01494 483728 info@corelegal.net
  15. 15. IntroducIng coreLegaL - InspIrIng storIes from LegaL support professIonaLs

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