Many law firms are finding it hard to come up with a clear value proposition and delivery model for clients.
So step back from the law for a moment and take a rare glimpse inside Google. You may be familiar with their work.
This is courtesy of an interview in the Silicon Republic with Google’s European sales chief, John Herlihy.
(First, there’s a mini-bombshell that Google sees the future in mobile, not on the desktop. That’s one reason for the development of lawriver. –Ed).
Mr. Herlihy describes what Google does to promote innovation and implementation at Internet speed:
Itâ€™s not good enough to apply normal management disciplines â€“ we think that scarcity breeds clarity. If, for example, we have enough resources invested in something, we halve it and eliminate overheads.
When we build something we strive for ubiquity in usage and adoption. That helps us understand how customers react and then we build a revenue model.
We measure people every 90 days. We get 360-degree feedback on people every 180 days and that feedback is published to the whole company. People want reality. Ninety per cent of the rewards end up going to 10pc of the people.
Customers today have more choices and are more aware of our competitorsâ€™ offerings. Unless we can serve them 24/7, 365 days a year, competitors will eat our lunch. […] At the end of the day it’s the customer who owns the cash. Thatâ€™s why we construct our organisation to deliver value. The underlying framework is to make it easier for people to do business, solve problems and move on.
That last sentence is not a bad mission for most companies, law firms included.
Clearly the Google model is not for the faint-hearted, or for partners wanting to slow down a bit after years of 2,000+ billable hours.
Scarcity, excellence, and value before revenue. Now that’s an alternative arrangement.