Melissa Hall makes an interesting case for specializing in being a generalist in your area of expertise.
She’s an attorney who practices what she calls, “cocktail law”. She spends an average of just 12 minutes with each of her clients. I like to think of what she does as practicing “on-demand law”. When you need a specific legal question answered, but want a trusted answer, you can go to her!
You can learn more about Melissa’s firm at smol-law.com, Smol Law.
Lot of great lessons in our conversation including:
- How she turned “cocktail party law” from a burden to a business model.
- Why lawyers are actually selling relationships and conversations.
- Even lawyers suffer from imposter syndrome.
- The importance of learning life skills in the legal profession.
Life Skills That Matter In This Episode
- Build your community
- Embrace discomfort
- Align your habits
How Melissa Works and Thinks
- Wake up time: Around 7:00 am
- Core work activities + habits: 1) Talk to people. 2) Talk about her practice to people who can potentially reach her target audience. 3) Build and maintain her technological infrastructure.
- Ideal work environment: Working virtually, even though she has a great co-working space.
- Superpower: Useful analogies.
- Definition of success: Having a major legal malpractice carrier deciding to cover primary care law as a practice area.
- 90-day goal: Launch retainer agreements and contact her previous clients to let them know about the new offering.
“When people keep telling you what they want out of your profession, maybe eventually you should try that.”
“It takes a certain amount of growth as a person to be in the point where you’re willing to advise people, but a big part of comes from being in community with other attorneys.”
“If you look at what technology is great at, it’s great optimizing the past, it is not good at plotting the future.”
If you have a different idea and want to do something uncertain or unfamiliar, Melissa had this advice for getting started:
Don’t listen to the people who aren’t doing what you want to do, listen to the people who are your potential customers.
Resources + Bonus Materials
Connect With Melissa