Dinner with Garry Wise

Michael CarabashYesterday I had one-on-one dinner at Boston Pizza with Employment Lawyer and Legal Tech Guru Garry Wise of Wise Law Office in Toronto – and boy did he have some WISE WORDS OF WISDOM for me! As a result of our get together, I’m doing a profile piece on him and a number of lawyers who I’ve met over the past few months to shed some light on some leading minds in the legal industry. Here are some of the things Garry recommended which I will be giving serious consideration to over the next little while: there is no such thing as bad publicity; show your personality through your blog; and don’t be shy about selling Dynamic Legal Forms to the public and to lawyers (he told me that I needed to become the ‘Sham-Wow’ guy for the ‘Need a Lawyer?’ market.) It was really something to hear about how technology has drastically changed the nature of the legal services industry – including lawyer/client communication, lawyer regulation, and the delivery of legal services. It shocked me, for example, to learn how lawyers used to write letters (which was not too long ago and which some lawyers still do): initially the lawyer would dictate, then have their secretaries prepare the draft, then the lawyer would revise and edit, and then the letter would ultimately be sent out and the file would be put away until a response came in. This whole process could take days, if not weeks. Correspondence between lawyers became a whole lot faster with the advent of technology: lawyers now write their own letters and simply e-mail them out. Opposing counsel can respond within a matter of minutes or hours. For someone who is so used to e-mail, .pdf-ing documents, and relying on other forms of communication (e.g. twitter, facebook, social media websites, texting, blackberry pinging, etc.), it came as a surprise to learn that lawyers used to take so long to prepare, write, and deliver a letter. Anyways, Garry, if you’re reading this, I am ever so grateful for our wonderful 4+ hour dinner and I’m already looking forward to the next one.

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