Lawyers have a few options when it comes to building their practice, from working as solos to joining large firms. Today, more than half of U.S. lawyers work as solos or in small firms of 9 lawyers or less.1

Entrepreneur Joseph Fluet, who founded Fluet law firm and about a half a dozen other companies, gave tips on how to start and manage a law firm at the Fluet headquarters in Tysons, VA, on Nov. 9, 2018.

“Many of [the businesses I founded] have gone extremely well, including the one we’re sitting in right now,” Fluet said. “I saw a space. I looked out in the legal market and saw a lot of big firms, and a lot of small firms. There were no mid-sized full laws firms, and I took advantage.”

While Fluet has managed to start several successful companies, he said it takes a good deal of effort, especially when staring a law firm.

“You now have three full time jobs when you start a company,” Fluet said. “The first is to create and run the company; full time job number two is sales; and last is delivery and operations.”

There are also many risk associated with making and managing your own firm.

“You can survive a lot, but, for example, one compliance issue and you’re done,” Fluet said.

While the road to starting your own firm is difficult and long, Fluet says it’s often worth the struggle.

“You have autonomy, and you can decide what your schedule is,” Fluet said. “You may work 80 hours a week, but then you don’t have to miss that soccer game. You don’t have to take 4 hours personal leave to take a dentist appointment … it’s awesome.”

Going through the trials and tribulations of starting your own firm does not guarantee success. However, Fluet stressed the importance of remembering that experience for future endeavors.

“If I don’t make it, no problem,” Fluet said.  “I’ll put it on my resumé, I’ll have learned a lot, I will be better from the experience, and I’ll move on.”

Click here to watch the entire presentation.