law-firm-technologyPeople often assume that I am capable of immense technological feats because I have a paperless law office and know what Linux is. I am not. I just take a different approach to technology than many lawyers: I am not complacent, and I am quite impatient.

Technology should free up your time, increase your efficiency, and make your life easier. If your technology tools are not doing these things, you are using the wrong technology. Find something better.

Be impatient with technology, not complacent

If you cannot get comfortable with a piece of technology quickly, stop using it. I do not mean that you should feel like an expert, just that you should be able to get the general feel for the software and whether it will work for you. If it is hard to learn, chances are it will be hard to use.

Good technology works the way you want it to, not the other way around. Do not make the mistake of thinking the technology you need will be computer software or hardware. Pens, paper, and manila folders are technology, too, and I have not found a better way to track what I need to do on my cases than my weekly work plan.

But become proficient with your tools

When you find technology you can work with, take the time to become proficient. Too many lawyers never take the time. Once you get a sense for what will work for you, hire a consultant, take a class, and get proficient.

If you do not want to spend the time (and possibly money) to become proficient with the tools you have chosen, stop using those tools and go back to what you do know, even if that means pen and paper. There is no point sticking with tools you cannot use well.

When it comes to your business systems, impatience can be a virtue.

(photo: headexplodie)