Grow Your Law Firm Using Task Management for Teams with David Zumpano

Seeing the legal industry as a business can be pretty daunting. You're not taught business in law school, much less practice task management for teams. You may realize that you don't particularly enjoy doing the entrepreneurial parts of growing your firm, and it's okay to admit that. Fortunately, there are people who can help you.

Your time is valuable; spend it doing what you do best and what you love. Set up systems and models that will help streamline your business. Along the way, you'll also need the discipline and commitment to grow. 

In this episode, David Zumpano joins us to share the importance of systems and processes as you deliver your services. We discuss the mindset that you need as you show people what you can offer. Dave also highlights the importance of community and strength-based task management for teams.

If you’re looking for tips on growing and running your law firm successfully, then this episode is for you.

Here are three reasons why you should listen to this episode

  1. Know why you should focus on providing value.
  2. Learn why making systemic task management for teams will make things easier and faster for your company and your clients.
  3. Understand why you need to love what you’re doing.


Episode Highlights

Dave’s Background

  • Dave is the youngest of 10 children. His immediate family alone numbers 55. 
  • He shares that estate planning is all about family. 
  • His firm’s motto is protecting the personal financial freedom of families. 
  • Dave believes that to do this, they need to be good lawyers and learn how to run a business to serve more people.

Dave: “At the end of the day, if we can’t help people, if we're just sitting in our office, cranking through legal work and not having [an] impact on people, then we're losing out on the greatest opportunity in our business called a law practice.”

How to Increase Your Impact

  • Start thinking about the impact you want to make, and the money will follow.
  • You need to focus on doing good and creating value for others.

Moshe: “And when you cater to somebody's emotional needs, when you make them feel like their problems already solved even though you haven't solved it yet, that's when you're able to win across the board over and over again. And it's not just about getting a client; it’s about having a client leave, feeling like they should have paid you more than they did. And they're extremely happy with the experience that they had.”

How to Practice Effective Task Management for Teams

  • Dave stresses the importance of lawyers connecting with their team.
  • Task management for teams is more than just delegation: your team should have the same passion and values as you do.
  • Dave encourages you to think about the culture you’re creating, your core values, and your North Star.
  • You need to set your goals and do the work to move towards them.
  • Listen to the full episode to learn more about how Dave applies Michael Gerber’s E-Myth to create transformative progress.

Be a Lifetime Learner

  • Dave observes that society has become entitled. 
  • People desire instant success.  
  • To succeed, what we need are discipline and commitment to growth. 

Dave: “I engage with people because I don't assume I know everything. And that is such an important element of growing your business.” 

Planning Your Way

  • To achieve consistency and a structured way of growing, David shares that we need to build planning systems. These systems include the following parts:
  1. Past-based activities - Tackles the things that hold you back and drag you down, that you need to get off your system.
  2. Present-based activities - Tackles the things presently in front of you which you need to complete to move forward.
  3. Future-based activities - Tackles planning for what’s ahead.

Show What You Can Give To People

  • Present what you can give to people — don’t make them ask, “Should I work with you?” Instead, the question should be, “How can we work together?”
  • In providing services, help people identify the best system that works for them by presenting a variety of choices or structures.

Dave: “It's not about selling what you're doing; it’s a byproduct. ‘Cause people like the way you think; they want to be associated with you, which I'm a big fan of. You find people to think like you grab on, grab arms; that's called community.”

The Importance of Having Systems

  • People will usually gravitate towards seeking services from you if they know what problems you can solve based on established systems.
  • It's essential to educate and motivate people to help them make informed decisions.
  • Existing systems and processes make task management for teams more efficient.
  • Listen to the full episode to know how Dave uses this idea in his business. 

On Value-Based Pricing

  • David prefers value-based pricing over flat-fee pricing.
  • You need to make sure the clients are receiving the services they are paying you for.

Dave: “How do you show your value? Because clients will pay based on value. And then maintain that process because you got to make sure the system keeps the work going and moving forward.”

  • Value-based pricing is also about accountability and having everybody doing their part.
  • To see examples of how to apply value-based pricing, listen to the full episode.

The Current State of the Practice of Law

  • Technology is changing how law firms conduct business. 
  • After working with many lawyers, Dave can help your firm bring in people who have the characteristics you lack. 
  • Learn to delegate! You can’t do everything, so proper task management for teams becomes crucial to streamlining your business.

Dave: “It's not something we do alone; we need the people around us. Again, systems processes. That's how we get to where we're going. Day after day, time's going by anyway; it’s just what are we doing during this time to improve our tomorrow?”

  • A lawyer shouldn’t do what he isn’t the best at, so David suggests that lawyers bring in a law firm leader who will do the job.

How to Achieve Your Ideal Level of Success

Dave: “Money is just a measure of how efficient you are in providing good services. That's what profit is. It's a measure of your success to being able to provide your services efficiently.”

  • Keep the image of your ideal business model in mind.
  • Think outside the box, figure out what you want to take home, and build your business model around it.
  • Remember that people are willing to pay more for more efficient and high-quality work. Understand what your client needs and what they’re willing to pay for it.
  • Decide where you want to go, take consistent action on that plan, and you’ll get there.

Dave’s Final Thoughts on Models and Systems

Dave: “That's the key thing, finding what's unique, what we love doing. If you do what you love, the rest will happen. And again, it's about building the model around doing what you love.”

  • Each of us has something that we’re good at. Ask five people what they think your biggest strength is. 
  • From there, hone in on a common theme and build a model on that. 
  • The world around us is insane, but you’re okay where you are right now.
  • You just need to decide on what you want and then commit to getting it.
  • Effective task management for teams into your business helps everyone do their best.

About David

David Zumpano is an entrepreneur who practices law as an attorney and CPA. He started his law firm, Estate Planning Law Center, two years after he graduated from Syracuse University College of Law. Dave is also the founder of Medicaid Practice Systems, LLC (MPS) and co-Founder of Lawyers With Purpose, LLC (LWP). 

Dave's practice centers on estate and Medicaid planning, asset and business protection, and elder law. Since he started the Law Offices of David J. Zumpano, his venture has grown twenty-fold. 

Throughout his career, Dave has educated thousands of lawyers all over the United States regarding Estate Planning, Asset Protection, Medicaid, and Veterans Benefits Planning through his firms MPS and LWP. Additionally, he also serves as a business coach to financial services and law and legal organizations. 

Dave has been featured in the Wall Street Journal. He is also the author of several law reviews, articles, books, and tools on estate planning, Medicaid planning, asset protection planning, and law firm practice management.

He lives in Central New York and Southwest Florida with his wife, Christine. They enjoy spending time with their children, Maria, Olivia, and Angela, and an extended family of nearly a hundred. 

If you wish to get in touch with David, you can contact Lawyers With Purpose at (315) 793-3622 or reach out through Ask Dave! You can also reach him on LinkedIn.

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