Although we know that many of you 3Geek readers are extremely shy about expressing your opinions, we invite you to share your thoughts, visions, and suggestions here to help shape one of the BarCamp sessions at the upcoming ILTA Conference. Note that we encourage you to comment whether or not you’re planning to attend the conference. The session, entitled Making an Impossible Engagement Possible, will be led by John Alber, Rudy DeFelice and yours truly, and will take a crowdsourcing approach to solving a business problem that is becoming more and more prevalent in today’s legal world. The problem statement is described below — please read it, and comment on this post to tell us how YOU would address this issue. No holds barred. Let your creativity shine. Your suggestions here will provide the fodder we need to jumpstart discussion and brainstorming at the live session. Here’s the problem statement:
Your firm has had a long relationship with a major financial institution–Mega Mega Bank. As a consequence of the housing bubble bursting and the ensuing recession, the bank is dealing with a number of defaulted consumer and business loans. It’s facing hundreds or even thousands of lawsuits. Each suit is, on average, not a major matter, ranging from a few thousand to a few hundreds of thousands of dollars at risk. But collectively, they pose a significant expense to Mega Mega Bank. Rather than asking the law firms that serve it for price estimates to do the lawsuits, the bank has set a not-to-exceed price for each suit. That price is extraordinarily aggressive. It is a fraction of the average your firm has been charging for such suits to date, and you regard your teams working on the suits as already quite lean, leveraged and efficient. Your firm views the business with Mega Mega Bank as strategic and it has decided to do a portfolio of some hundreds of cases at the price proposed by the bank. The lawyers, project managers and technologists who will assist in handling these matters do not, at present, have any firm ideas how they will do the work to a high quality standard while, at the same time, controlling costs so as to make the engagements economically feasible. Your job is to work with others on the team to find a way, or many ways, to accomplish high quality work at a much lower cost than has previously been possible. The firm will invest as necessary to preserve the relationship–within reason. But time is of the essence. The longer the team does business the old way, the more money the firm will lose.
What steps can the firm take immediately to meet its goals here? What steps can it take over the medium term? What technologies and process improvements can be brought to bear? What can the firm do to increase the likelihood of success? In thinking about this, don’t limit yourself to your area of expertise. Cross boundaries. And don’t limit yourself to conventional solutions. If a conventional solution worked already, the client wouldn’t be pressuring your firm for radical innovations. We’re eager to hear your thoughts and suggestions for solving this problem. Provide your input in the Comments section here, or via Twitter by including #ILTA11 #ORG2 in your tweet. If you’d like to see how others have reacted, check out the comments on our cross-posting on ILTA’s KM blog.