As a longtime technology consultant to law firms, Heinan Landa knows that lawyers are cautious customers who can be resistant to change. But the old expectations around client service no longer exist, he says, and meeting the new standards requires a shift in the way law firms do business.
In this new episode of the Modern Law Library podcast, Landa tells the ABA Journal’s Lee Rawles that he intends for his new book, The Modern Law Firm: How to Thrive in an Era of Rapid Technological Change, to help ease lawyers’ anxiety about this upheaval by helping them identify their firms’ “technology operational maturity level.”
By identifying a firm’s current maturity level—the self-assessment quiz is also available online—Landa hopes to provide attorneys with a road map of next steps.
While The Modern Law Firm was written with midsized firms with 10 to 100 lawyers in mind, Landa says that with adjustments of scale, the advice can also be relevant to solos and to BigLaw attorneys. Whether or not your firm has the resources to hire a full-time chief technology officer, Landa would encourage all attorneys to take an interest in emerging trends and suggests a number of ways to make it a manageable part of one’s work life.
“Technology now plays a central, dominant role in how we live and how we do business,” Landa writes in the introduction. “It can single-handedly bring an otherwise healthy law firm to the brink of failure. And on the flip side, it can empower firms to achieve a level of success that its leaders might not have though possible. My goal is to provide your firm with the clarity and tools to do the later.”
Landa also discusses the ways that COVID-19 has accelerated the need for technology adoption and walks through what he has identified as “the four pillars of exceptional customer service” to help firms keep and build business.