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I heard a public service radio spot featuring advice from Smokey Bear and the need to make sure your campfire is completely out before you walk away. “If it’s too hot to touch, it’s too hot to leave,” Smokey advises. That’s the takeaway. The nugget listeners should remember. In my opinion, it’s better than the traditional, “Only you can prevent wildfires (previously “forest fires”). It’s better because it doesn’t lecture us about preventing forest fires,…
A few years back my wife and I went to dinner with our old friends Bob and Lou Ann. During dinner, Bob mentioned something I’d recently written on my blog. I was surprised since Bob isn’t a lawyer. And he’s retired. And I figured he probably has better things to do than to read my utterances. But apparently, we’re connected on LinkedIn where my blog posts are re-posted and he reads them there. You never…
In honor of Henry David Thoreau’s birthday, July 12th was National Simplicity Day, a day to celebrate a simpler, uncluttered, and slower pace of life. Who knew? I didn’t before I watched a video that mentioned it and challenged viewers to use fewer apps and online tools in our work. The hosts mentioned 3 apps they use every day in their business and how those apps replaced other apps they had previously used, simplifying…
If you spend enough time online, you wind up seeing things like this: “Scientists finally concluded that the chicken came first, not the egg because the protein which makes eggshells is only produced by hens.” I always wanted to know that, didn’t you? Full disclosure (because this is dangerous information): I didn’t do any research to see if this is true so if you share this at a networking event or in a blog post…
Pilots use pre-flight checklists. Juries follow jury instructions. You use a checklist (or program) each time you open a new client file. In my practice, I had forms (and form letters) for everything. They helped me get new hires up to speed quickly. They helped us run a tight ship because everyone knew what to do. Systems make our work easier and more likely to get good results. They make sure we don’t miss steps…
Remember that girl in school who sat in the front row, took copious notes (with excellent penmanship), and raised her hand so often the teacher stopped calling on her? She always turned in her homework on time. And she always got an A. I hated that girl. If you were that girl, sorry, I didn’t really hate you. I was jealous of you. You were so organized. You made everything look easy. You made the…
I was running errands with my wife and we parked so she could run into the market for a few things. After a few minutes, an older woman with a foreign accent came up to my car window, told me she was parked nearby and another car hit hers. She wanted to know what to do. “What, do I look like an attorney?” I thought. Wait, that’s silly. She’s not from the US and is…
If you want to earn more without working more, or earn more and work less, the simplest way to do that is to find ways to use leverage in your work. Leverage means getting more with less. Less time, less capital, less effort. When you hire an employee, you’re using leverage. When you create a checklist that allows you to get your work done faster or better or with fewer errors, you’re using leverage. When…
A “real” lawyer has a youtube channel where he “reacts” to trials on TV shows and movies, like My Cousin Vinnie, The Rainmaker, and Star Trek TNG (where Picard defends Data’s humanity). He shares his take on the accuracy of these fictional trials. Today, he released a video titled Real Lawyer Reacts to Lawyer Jokes. I haven’t watched any of these videos yet but his nearly 500,000 subscriber-count tells me all I need to…
I just re-read The One Thing, the book that asks you to ask yourself, for each area of your life, this “Focusing Question”: “What’s the ONE thing I can do, such that by doing it, everything else will be easier or unnecessary.” The book, and the movement it has created, makes the case for drilling down through all of the possible things you could do, to find the one to do first. I just…