A Time Management Checklist For Your Legal Practice

Ian Solomon   | 

lawyers coach Toronto

Implementing the right strategy and designing a long-term plan to achieve your goals as a legal practitioner can be quite a challenge. A professional lawyer coach can be a valuable resource in helping you succeed in your practice by working with you to develop a concise plan to reach your full potential.

As a certified lawyer coach in Toronto, ON, I’ve created a handy time management checklist to ensure you develop the right habits and make the best use of your time. By following my checklist, you can accelerate your legal career and still have time to get back to other important things in your life. 

1. Create a schedule. 
Acquire a diary and note down your schedule for the coming week. Make sure to include the date and time of your cases to be better prepared for the week ahead. 

2. Prepare a to-do list. 
On a separate notepad, write down your to-do list for the following day, and ensure your tasks are prioritized in order of importance. 

3. Do the hard thing first.
Choose the hardest items to accomplish. In other words, consider working on items that are problematic and require the most effort to resolve.

4. Set a time limit for your tasks.
Estimate the approximate time required to complete each difficult task and select the time period (9 am to 11 am) on your diary to work on it. Tasks that take more than two hours to complete (such as drafting a complex shareholders agreement, or a detailed Statement of Claim) can be scheduled for the next day at the same time if necessary.

5. Allocate time for client feedback. 
Now that you’re done with the hard part, you can spend the next hour or so returning clients’ phone calls and responding to emails.

6. Delegate tasks after lunch. 
The time after your lunch break, from 1 pm to 2 pm, can be used for business development such as contacting referral sources, writing a blog or newsletter, etc. The next two hours from 2 pm to 4 pm can be used to work on other important tasks such as reporting letters, updated minute books, etc.

7. Be open to rescheduling tasks.
An urgent matter may preempt your work at any time. So, make sure you quickly reschedule your more challenging tasks to the next available time slot. 

8. Maintain flexibility. 
Maintain enough flexibility in your diary to move things around and accommodate those important tasks so you can get back to your earlier work as soon as possible.

9. Save time for other tasks. 
At the end of the day, do your administrative tasks, time docketing, billing, reviewing real estate checklists, etc.

10. Insert important dates in your diary.
These dates could be court dates for trials or motions, prescription periods, client meetings, etc.

11. Review and plan for next week. 
On Friday, review the progress of your workweek and plan your work schedule for the following week. And as mentioned above, focus on conquering the most difficult tasks first.

If you want an effective schedule to help improve your performance and increase recognition as a lawyer, it is best to seek advice from a lawyer coach. As a professional lawyer coach in Toronto, ON, Ian Solomon has been offering executive career coaching for lawyers and law firms in Toronto, Hamilton, Burlington, Windsor, Ottawa, London, and the Greater Toronto Area. Apart from being a certified professional co-active coach, I also coach entrepreneurs. To learn more about my coaching services, please click here. If you have any questions about how I can help you, I’d love to hear from you. Contact me here.