Times are quite good for the Firm right now and we are enjoying them; however, we are mindful of the fact that our business - like the business of most companies - goes up and down over time.
Instead of fearing the downturns, we are trying to do the exact opposite – and even look forward to these down times as a chance to expand and grow. Our newest motto “Embrace Volatility” is designed to push ourselves – both individually and as a law firm -- to live within, and indeed below, our means, so that when times go poorly we are in a position to take advantage of opportunities.
All we are doing here is making a slight twist of the dial in how we look at the world. Instead of assuming that “next year” will always be better than the year before, we instead look at our peak to trough earnings over a period of years, assume that “next year” will be at the level of a trough, and try to live within that number both as a law firm and individually. This way we will not be distraught if “next year” is worse than the year before it. Instead, we will take it in stride as an inevitable result of how our business model works.
Ultimately, if we can truly Embrace Volatility we will be able to enjoy the monetary peak years and at the same time not fear – and even look forward to – the trough years as times when we can grow and expand.
We suspect that the most likely result in the next downturn is that our competitor law firms will jettison “talent” and this will be a great moment for us when that talent will hopefully come to D&S. If we truly live within our means as a law firm and individually, we will be able to truly Embrace Volatility and be able to ask these talented lawyers to join us.