Saturday, April 7, 2007

Lord of the Fleas Part 2

This is Part 2 of "Lord of the Fleas", a fictional account of a business idea I have not actually done, but which I believe would work. Part 1 is at

.......I really didn't know what was going to happen that first day. My break even point was roughly two paying matters coming out of spending my day. Of course, I wasn't in this to break even. Come to think of it, the objective of making real profits and hitting it big in law practice, is something too many of us fail to do.

I set up my booth with a sign containing my name and the words "Lawyer" and "Abogado". Using the word abogado forced me to bring my bilingual secretary Carmen. I could have tried to consult with the thousands of Spanish speaking clients in waiting, figuring that living in NYC they probably speak SOME English. I knew better, half the time my high school Spanish is better than the clients English, and while this makes good comedy, it doesn't start an effective attorney/client relationship.

From the moment I put up my sign at 7:30 AM, drinking my Dunkin Donuts Coffee, until we left when the sun went down, I consulted on 127 matters. I know this because I kept a running log. Actually, I had not planned to keep a log, but I DID have a yellow pad and pen, so after the 5th conversation, by 8 AM, I asked Carmen to set up a log. Perspective is a funny thing. Many lawyers, upon being told that I had a day with 127 consultations, responded that I must have talked to a lot of nuts, and had a day filled with things that turned out to be "nothing". There is some truth in that. Some of the people WERE nuts, some of the matters WERE "nothing". But, that first day, I did talk to clients leading to four personal injury cases, four real estate closings, three wills, two estates, one incorporation, and twelve matters which ended up being "real" referrals ("real" because I particpated in the fees, within the ethical guidelines of course). Of the referrals, there was one med mal, one legal mal, three business transactions, five immigration matters, and two matrimonials.

The next week we were busy, working the new matters and preparing for week 2 at the Aqueduct Flea Market.....

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