The last couple of years have been challenging for many people in different ways. While it can be difficult to look back on this time from a “glass half full” perspective, we can use our collective experience during the pandemic as an opportunity to reflect positively on the changes as they apply to the workplace.
1. Remote work is possible. Before COVID-19, many people viewed the idea of working from home or from a location outside a traditional office space as daunting and unattainable on a long-term basis. The pandemic forced us to quickly leave the bricks and mortar behind and set up shop elsewhere. While many attorneys have returned to the office - at least part-time - we know that remote work is possible and can provide more flexibility. Remote work can allow for a more personalized and comfortable working environment, a shorter or no commute, and the ability to spend more time with friends and family.
2. Clients are comfortable with nontraditional delivery of legal services. Clients have adjusted their consumer habits, so they are less intimidated by legal services provided virtually. They now often expect the option to use remote services, including virtual meetings and hearings, online communication portals, paperless exchange of information, and online payment systems.
3. Technology does not have to be scary. The pandemic forced us to utilize certain types of technology that may have once seemed intimidating. Videoconferencing is now a regular part of many people’s lives, making communication with clients and colleagues more efficient, convenient, and far-reaching. Educational webinars are everywhere, allowing attorneys to more easily access CLEs and network with other lawyers. Many attorneys were previously hesitant to adopt online payment options, e-signature applications, or client portals. Now these tools are widely used in law offices, making it easier for clients to pay, sign documents, and exchange information. We’ve learned that new technologies can become a normal and positive part of our lives.
4. Adaptability is key. The constant waves of changes have required us to alter how we live and work. Your business will flow more smoothly and be less stressful if you can find ways to adapt in times of transition. The ability to adapt to changing work conditions also fosters increased productivity because you are more familiar with your needs. Continue to use this shifting legal landscape to periodically reexamine your firm systems and procedures and make them work for you.
5. We are resilient. The past two years compelled us to face fears and make adjustments with little to no notice. We’ve shown that we are capable of handling big challenges and are stronger as a result.
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