Create a "Don't Do" List for Better Practice Management
July 25, 2006 at 4:35 PM
Now that I’m back from my two-week plus jaunt across the United States, I’ve been wading through my e-mail and came across a particularly pertinent article in the latest issue of the ABA’s Law Practice Today. In her article, "Too Much to Do, Too Little Time?" Allison Shields recommends making a list of things that you shouldn’t do rather than a "to do" list so that you stop overextending yourself. For example, attorneys can make a list of tasks that they should delegate to others so that they can concentrate on the most important tasks in their practices. Attorneys can also use their "don’t do" list to remind themselves to avoid abusive clients and to protect their personal time by listing dates and times when they will not make themselves available to colleagues and clients. Time-consuming marketing and networking activities that rarely yield new clients should also be added to the "don’t do" list. I like Shields’ approach because it requires you to analyze your practice (or your job) and figure out the activities that are truly necessary and worthwhile and jettison the activities that aren’t worth it.