Last week I joined Sam Glover of Lawyerist and Blois Olson of Tunheim Partners to teach a seminar on websites, online marketing and social media to 100+ lawyers in the process of hanging out their own shingles as part of a day-long “How to How to Start & Build a Successful Law Firm” CLE.

In preparation for the course (and because it’s fun) I reached out to my followers on Twitter to get some advice for these daring lawyers about to start their own firm.

My question: What’s your 140 characters of advice for a lawyer starting their own practice?

The advice came in from attorneys and other professionals in Texas, Hawaii, Florida, Virginia, Minnesota, Massachusetts, Washington, D.C., New Jersey, and Ontario. Here are my top ten.

1. Michael P. Maslanka (@worklawyer): You are all solo practioners even if you are in a huge firm.

2. Professor Binkovitz (@ProfBinkovitz):  Advice:Listening to client’s story may be as important as legal outcome.

3. Andy Winchell (@AndyWinchell): Read Solo By Choice by @carolynelefant, her blog myshingle.com, Foonberg (but ignore the costly stuff) and do some #SPU.

4. Todd M. Murray (@toddmmurray):  Choosing a practice area: what do you love to do; what do you know how to do; and what clients can you realistically get.

5. Mark Schofield (@MarkSchofield): Balance work/life.

6. Darl Gleed (@182Seconds): Advice for lawyer starting practice? Specialize if possible. Tell other attys you’re accepting referrals.

7. Mitchell Goldstein (@mpgoldstein): Know who you want to serve, why, & how; be prepared to tell them. Stick to your mission & re-evaluate often.

7. Patrick Nicol (@patricknicol): its still about relationships!

8. Jared Correia (@jaredcorreia):  (1) Get your financial house in order; (2) Focus on developing efficient processes; (3) Market online using SM.

9. Jennifer Frantz (@jenniferfrantz): Find a mentor in each area you want to cover. To answer questions and lend you a template or two. Then pay it forward.

10. Eric Morrell (@lawebmorrell): Make sure you get involved in activities you like that are not filled with attorneys ex. sport, hobby, club, volunteer.

Any advice you would add? Join the conversation in the comments to this post.

(Photo: cwalker71)