All this talk of Value related to legal services brought back a value lesson I recall from a few years back. The methodology I saw provides a direct way of assessing any value proposition. In its most basic form the measurement is: If you removed “X,” what will the impact be on “Y.”
For instance – if law firm X were to close its doors at 5:00 on Friday, what will the impact be to its clients on Monday morning? The level of pain they would feel would be proportional to the value the firm currently provides.
As a mental exercise and way of helping our readers assess their value proposition in their current jobs, I provide a contrast of two law firm departments and their value proposition using this method. This analysis is oversimplified to make a point. Consider that before you ‘hoist me by my own petard.’
First up – Marketing
If marketing were shut down on Friday at 5:00, what would the impact on a firm be Monday morning? Absent support for some immediate seminars or RFP responses, there might not be much impact. In the mid-run, a firm would stop putting on seminars and running ads. Or basic marketing functions would shift to partners. Would this put the firm out-of-business? Probably not. They may lose some market awareness, but perhaps not much in the way of work from current clients. However, in the long-run the firm would begin to feel the pain from this short-sided action.
Next up – IT
If IT were shuttered at 5:00 on Friday, a firm would quickly feel it. If you are unable to create, print and send documents, you cannot practice law.
Does this mean if you are in IT you can relax? Absolutley not. The sands of law firm operations (and organizations in general) can shift quite quickly in the New Normal. The lesson here is that you should conduct a value assessment of your current position on a regular basis.
Personally I think that’s the New Way. If you are not constantly looking to improve your value proposition, it can quickly disappear. Think of this as a fun challenge instead of a burden. This New Way values creativity and critical thinking over the mundane and dull. And in my opinion, it delivers a much more fulfilling job.