What’s my story?
Hey there, I’m Ernie Svenson —an attorney in New Orleans, Louisiana.
And yes I know that people who’ve never been to New Orleans think all we do is eat, drink and party. And yes, that’s mostly true.
But here’s a little-known factoid: a lot of us also work. And work really hard.
And, in law school (and afterward) that’s exactly what I did.
I graduated at the top of my class, after making law review and being on the National Moot Court team.
Then spent 2 years clerking for a respected federal trial judge.
I learned a lot about how courts operate behind the scenes, which was obviously invaluable.
That got me a job with a prestigious firm firm in a tall fancy building in downtown New Orleans. I was exceptionally well paid and assisted at every step by dedicated, hard-working staff.
The firm provided us with every imaginable resource, including a fully stocked kitchen with free sodas and popcorn.
In the mid-90’s I became a full partner, which was supposed to be the pinnacle of success.
But by 2006 I was completely burned out and miserable.
The “glory days” of easy money were gone.
Clients became scarcer, and those that hung around became exceedingly picky about their bills. This was a crisis.
So the firm hired a fancy national consulting firm. After they interviewed everyone (just like in the movie “Office Space”) serious changes were announced…
No more free popcorn or sodas.
And the end-of-the year bonuses for the staff were killed too.
That’s when I knew it was time to leave.
But, I was terrified of going out on my own. I’d have to learn to manage things that I had never had to manage before.
Like paper for example. That’s because of the kind of practice I had.
A commercial litigation practice produces documents like rabbits produce more rabbits.
A commercial litigation practice produces paper like rabbits produce more rabbits.
And I wasn’t eager to manage large volumes of paper. That put me in a quandary…
Because if I left I’d have to hire staff to help me manage the paper. And that meant managing people.
And I despised managing people.
But there were other problems if I left the big firm.
I figured I’d only have a few clients that would follow me if I left, which might get me through 18 months or so.
But where would NEW clients come from?
Not from my marketing prowess, that’s for sure.
My sales & marketing skills were basically non-existent.
Fun fact: I spent a summer in college trying to sell encyclopedias, and sold only one set. And that order was canceled 2 days after I “made the sale.”
So, I wasn’t exactly Mr. Rainmaker.
But, it turned out I didn’t have to be anything other than myself.
Miraculously, I discovered the elusive secret to a thriving practice.
I used technology to replace expensive staff.
And to avoid getting locked into high overhead office space.
Technology enabled me to work as much as I wanted to.
When I wanted to.
And wherever I wanted to.
And it enabled me to get new cases without even trying.
Great clients sought me out via the Internet and begged me to take them on.
Crazy, but true.
Yeah, it was pretty cool.
But you know what was even cooler?
Showing other lawyers how they could do the same thing, which is what I started doing.
Helping fellow lawyers
For the past twelve years, I’ve helped hundreds of lawyers improve their practices, using the same elusive secret that I used. I’ve been able to help them in a number of ways.
First I’ve spoken at dozens of legal conferences around the country, many of them sponsored by the American Bar Association.
And I’ve been invited to speak at state bar association events around the country as well.
- Florida Bar Association
- State Bar of Texas
- Missouri Bar Association
- Indiana Bar Association
- North Carolina Bar Association
- Ohio Bar Association
- Mississippi Bar Association
- Alabama Bar Association
- Louisiana Bar Association
- Washington State Bar Association
- Alaska Bar Association
I’ve also written books.
Two were published by the ABA, and two I published myself.
Because that’s what technology allows you to do now: take control of your own destiny.
(Assuming you don’t get derailed by these scoundrels).
I’ve started a bunch of websites, two of which are especially helpful to small firm lawyers.
Basically, my message is this: anyone can have a thriving, easy-to-manage practice like mine.
You don’t have to have any special technology skills, other than the ability to surf the web.
(Which you obviously have or you wouldn’t be on this page) *Wink*
Would you like to learn how to make your practice way more profitable, and easier to manage…
Right now, for free?