Find Mediators Near You:

The 3 Things To Focus On If Your Practice Is Failing To Thrive

Whether you recently started a legal or dispute resolution practice or if you have been in business for years, many entrepreneurs are finding that their businesses are struggling lately. They are facing increasing challenges in finding and retaining clients and finding a sufficient base to support their practice. There are a number of reasons for this, the main one is often an adherence to the “that’s the way I’ve always done it” mindset. The world around us, and our clients have changed quite a bit in just the past few years, and we need to keep up.

In today’s rapidly evolving world, the legal profession finds itself at a pivotal crossroads. The rapid pace of change has presented three significant hurdles legal practitioners face, including intensifying competition, the rapid pace of technological evolution, and the ever-changing needs of clients. These challenges, while daunting, also present unparalleled opportunities for those willing to embrace innovation and adapt to the new landscape of legal services.

Understanding the Landscape

The legal sector, including dispute resolution, is experiencing a seismic shift, with traditional practices being challenged by the demands of a digital age. This transformation is driven by a need for greater efficiency, transparency, and client-focused services. If practitioners are willing to evaluate their current practice in these three areas, identify where improvements can be made and implement those changes efficiently, then their growth is often super-charged! Let’s take a look at the main areas where we are stagnating.

Strategies for Success

Here are three key strategies for legal and dispute resolution entrepreneurs to thrive, along with actionable examples, resources and some relevant podcast episodes from The Make Money Mediating Podcast that explore these strategies in depth.

1. Embracing Technological Advancements

Technology is revolutionizing the way legal services are delivered, offering opportunities to improve efficiency, client service, and access to justice. Legal professionals can:

2. Innovating Business Models

The traditional billable hour is increasingly under scrutiny, prompting legal professionals to explore new business models that align more closely with client needs and preferences.

  • Subscription-based legal services: Offer ongoing legal support for a fixed monthly fee, providing predictable costs for clients and steady revenue for the practice.Subscription Services in Mediation – A look at how subscription models can be applied to mediation services for both businesses and individuals.
  • Unbundled legal services: Allow clients to select specific services on an as-needed basis, making legal assistance more accessible and affordable.Unbundling Legal Services: A Path to Accessibility – Discusses the benefits and challenges of offering piecemeal legal services.
  • Flat-fee services for specific tasks: Charge a single, transparent fee for common legal tasks or cases, simplifying billing for both the practice and the client.LinkedIn Post on Flat-Fees – Examines the shift towards flat-fee billing and its impact on the industry.

3. Prioritizing Client-Centric Services

Focusing on the client experience is essential for differentiation and building long-term relationships. Legal professionals can enhance client satisfaction by:

  • Offering personalized legal solutions: Tailor services to meet the unique needs of each client, demonstrating a deep understanding of their challenges and goals.
  • Improving client communication: Utilize client portals and regular updates to keep clients informed and engaged throughout their case.
  • Providing value-added services: Offer workshops, legal education, and other resources to help clients navigate their legal issues beyond the immediate case.

By implementing these strategies and learning from real-world examples and discussions on The Make Money Mediating Podcast and in this Practice Building Tip of the Day Newsletter, legal professionals and dispute resolution entrepreneurs can navigate the challenges of the modern legal landscape and position themselves for success. Be sure to subscribe to both, because I have more content on all of the above in the pipeline – you don’t want to miss any of it!

More resources:

Work with Me: Susan Guthrie Consulting and More

Get my FREE Book: Build the Practice of Your Dreams: One Month of Daily Tips for Finding Success


Susan Guthrie

Susan Guthrie, nationally recognized as one of the Top Family Law and Mediation Attorneys in the country, has been helping individuals and families navigate separation and divorce for more than 30 years. Susan provides legal coaching services to select clients around the world.   Susan recently partnered with legal and mediation legend, Forrest… MORE >

Featured Mediators

View all

Read these next


Book Review: The Art of Roleplay and Dispute Resolution Training

I remember the role play from my first mediation training back in the late 1980s. I can recall sitting in the middle of a ring of chairs with two other...

By Colin Rule

The Essential Guide To Marketing Your ADR Practice (Book Review)

Author: Natalie Armstrong President, Golden Media Publishing Ms. Armstrong’s book is clear, clean, professional marketing advice for the ADR practitioner. Written in a style that she would call “Kitchen English”...

By Jon Linden

Ethical Negotiations

From the Blog of Phyllis G. Pollack.      The art of negotiation can present ethical dilemmas. As explained in the April 2008 (Vol. 11, No. 4) issue of Negotiation published by...

By Phyllis Pollack