Change is the only constant thing in life. It is inevitable. You can’t stop it. You have no control. It is the only constant thing in your firm. It can make or break your firm. It all depends on how you handle it. There is no way you can know the changes that will come your way but you have got to be ready at all times for change or you will find yourself at the losing end of things.
Imagine how life will be if there are no changes.
Imagine how repetitious and uninteresting things will be.
There is this story about Albert Einstein. The story says when he was a professor in Princeton, he set the exact same questions for his final year students for twenty good years! He never changed it. After a couple of years, his students and his fellow lecturers as well, figured out the predictability of his questions.
So, one of his peers asked him why he kept repeating the same questions year after year. His response was “Because the answers keep on changing.”
Same applies to businesses. It applies to your firm.
The only constant in business is change. A good idea three years ago could be a bad idea today. A great idea today could be a disaster next quarter. The answers for yesterday’s questions were created from an environment different from today.
The way you did things last year has changed drastically. If nothing else, COVID – 19 has shown that change is real. Change can be sudden. Change can be drastic. Change can affect both negatively or positively. Change doesn’t affect everyone the same way.
If you remember very well between 1996 and 2000 during the dot-com boom, tens of thousands of people made millions. The in-thing then was buying dot-com names. Buy and keep. Sell at a higher price. Buy every single name you can imagine. One day, it ended. The bubble burst.
In America, between 2002 and 2007 lots of these people made millions by buying and turning over single-family homes. Like all great ideas, these were brilliant and bulletproof ideas until they were not any more.
What caused them to go from being a great idea to a horrible one was a change in the environment.
The reason businesses or companies lose relevance and go broke is because they continue to grow, but fail to change and grow with the market forces. They rely on old questions and answers.
Listen, as long as the business/economic/political etc. environment keeps on changing, you need to come up with a different set of questions and answers to remain relevant in business; to keep your firm relevant.
Competition among firms is getting steeper. Foreign firms are encroaching into the Nigeria space. Some Nigerian firms are crossing borders, doing business outside of the shores of Nigeria. The way you got answers and solutions for your clients are getting archaic now. You must embrace changes and embrace the new way things are being done.
Many firms never believed lawyers and technology could shake hands. Today, they have not only shaken hands, they have embraced each other for a new future going ahead.
Here are few questions for you to ponder on for your firm:
Critically thinking through the questions above will let you know the skills you need to learn, what you need to change, who you need to hire if need be, the business approach you need to adopt and so forth to remain relevant and competitive in the legal space.
The only constant in business is change. Your firm will need to know these changes, adapt and prepare always for the next change.
CREDITS: Keith Cunningham; “The Road Less Stupid.”