I think it’s now pretty clear we’re facing a severe recession. No surprise really, given the extraordinary measures taken to stem the spread of COVID 19.
Like all of you, I’m trying to work out what that means for our business.
But, we’ve been here before. My business life includes the dot com bust, and the financial crash in 2008. In fact, the Cashroom was founded in 2008, in the depths of the last recession. So, I’ve been reflecting on what we can learn from the past … can we go “Back to the Future”.
One of the first articles I wrote for the Cashroom’s website was how it had never been easier to start your own law firm. I wrote the article in 2012, as we were beginning to recover from the 2008 recession. It focused on how technology had advanced since I set up my own firm in 2005, 7 years earlier. Things like, being able to “rent” practice management software (don’t think I knew the anacronym SASS then!), rather than buy it, and how cloud computing meant you didn’t need to buy and run a server in your office.
It was one of our most read articles of 2012. I followed it up with a short series on starting a law firm from a blank piece of paper, which were also well read (they’re still there https://www.thecashroom.co.uk/law-firm-you-want-to-own/)
Well, at the time lots of lawyers were thinking hard about what they wanted to do. Many had been made redundant from large firms, and a few had been treated pretty poorly. They were beginning to wonder whether they wanted to “go out on their own”. At the time the Cashroom won considerable new business from new starts.
Last week I signed 2 new clients. Both of them new starts.
I suspect many lawyers are thinking about their future after the “trauma” of lockdown, and many more will do so during the coming recession. And as I did in 2005, many will decide that if they’re going to go to hell in a hand cart, it might as well be their own hand cart.
And guess what – it really has never been easier to start a new firm, even easier than it was in 2012. The price of technology has dropped even further, the scope and diversity of the legal services you can provide has never been wider, and we all know now that you don’t need an office!
So, if you’re thinking about how you go back to work in your old firm, or maybe even whether you go back, remember …. it’s never been easier to set up your own firm!
And of course, if accounting and compliance are something that’s putting you off, we can help!