These days I am getting a lot of my news from the bus stop. Here’s the gist:
- “They are closing our Minneapolis office…”
- “We are not filling our open positions…”
- “Well I don’t want to work on this project, but this isn’t the time to complain…”
Like all employers, the MSBA is concerned about the economy, the impact on our members, on the legal community and on our budget. Like our members, we must assess what we do and how we do it. MSBA revenue is largely derived from member dues; when attorneys experience financial hardship, we do too.
Most days we are an optimistic bunch – seeing the opportunity through the challenges – intent on providing attorneys with practice resources that will enable them to provide efficient, lower cost services to their clients.
Online services are a boon in lean times, as even the most tech-challenged lawyers know there are economies to be had with increased use of technology. Three of our online services:
- mypractice offers members opportunities to network with other attorneys on everything from substantive law questions, law practice challenges, to just plain re-acquaintance and companionship
- practicelaw contains forms, checklists, case summaries, and MSBA section CLE materials in several practice areas — including real estate, probate, labor and employment, and family law
- fastcase is free online legal research service available to MSBA members
We’ve had a lot of discussions of late centering on how we can best position these and other resources to best serve our members in lean economic times.
- Lawyers practicing in the areas of family law, criminal law, bankruptcy and foreclosure are seeing an uptick in calls. Should we offer more resources in these areas to help those members respond quickly and efficiently?
- Should we focus on helping lawyers practice more economically e.g. offer more low cost CLEs, compile additional practice management resources?
- Can we help attorneys attract additional clients and provide more economical service to existing clients by providing more practice resources such as checklists, forms, articles?
Not only must we anticipate member needs, we want to spend your member dollars wisely. This means evaluating what resources we should keep, expand, develop or even abandon. We are talking; we are also listening. You tell us, by e-mail feedback or by leaving a comment below.
We’ve got lots to offer members, and given the economy, we are especially motivated to help you “work smart.” Spread the word at the bus stop.