Picture this: you’re a potential client looking for a lawyer within budget and you walk into an absolutely breathtaking office. You’re greeted by a receptionist who asks you who you are there to see. The receptionist calls up that lawyer, who comes out to meet you and walks you into an equally impressive and fully equipped conference room. This is the fifth lawyer you’ve seen today, and after looking at the general space of this specific office, you think the lawyers fees will be well out of your financial ability. The lawyer gives you his upfront costs, and you sit there thinking this must all be a joke because there’s no way a lawyer with an office this amazing can be giving fees that low, but you take him or her on as your lawyer because surprisingly, his fees fit your budget.That’s how a meeting with a lawyer who uses “virtual office space” goes. In this declining economic state, potential clients are always looking for the best “bang for their buck” and this is giving new lawyers a much harder time obtaining clients when they first join large law firms. This sends younger lawyers into a mad dash, looking for centralized office spaces, somewhere with conference room access where they can begin their own law practices. But where can they find a space that isn’t going to cost them an arm and a leg so that they can keep their overhead costs low, and thus be able to provide the same services as a larger law firm at sometimes half the cost? That’s where a virtual office space comes in.Companies like Micro Office Solutions and Your Wall Street Office are just two of the larger conglomerate of companies of its kind. What they offer is a moneysaving efficient solution to the declining job placement market for new lawyers, and a great home for start up practices of existing lawyers. Some of the services offered by these virtual office solutions are a lawyers dream come true. They consist of anything from large private office spaces furnished with desks, chairs and filing cabinets, to high speed internet and unlimited local and domestic calling all readily paid for in one monthly bill. Many of these companies offer conference rooms, professional mailing addresses with onsite mail handling, printer fax and photocopy machine access and recurring cleaning services all inclusively.Many lawyers will believe that having a non traditional office space takes away from the daily interactions and networking between those on the job, but those lawyers have never set foot inside the new non traditional law offices. Many of these said “non traditional” offices have more assets readily available to them then any other traditional law office. Need an expert for your upcoming trial? Go talk to the therapist that has space in the office. Need someone to spin PR for your client? Take a brisk walk down the hall to one of the PR firms’ right inside your “non traditional office”. Not getting enough potential clients? Work out a deal with the advertising agency next to your office. The lists of possibilities are endless, and your resources within a virtual office space are limitless.An unprecedented amount of professions are being hurt daily by our current recession. Travel agents, stock brokers, librarians; all people we used to count on but can no longer afford to pay their fees. What do we do when we can’t afford them? We use the technological tools we have in our homes to get the same information those in that profession would help us acquire without the incurred costs. With incomes becoming smaller each day and the internet expanding the amount of information that can be found there, many potential clients are convinced they are capable of being their own lawyers to save some money. If you as a lawyer can find a way to be the internet, in other words be extremely efficient and low cost, plus bring your already impeccable records of experience and personal interaction to the table, clients are much more likely to come directly to you for your services.A large number of concepts that were once considered taboo are common practice in today’s age. Like the shift from typewriting to word processing on a computer, the shift to using virtual office space will too turn from “non traditional” to “traditional”, and an option that would be considered the smart thing to do for all parties involved. Wouldn’t you want to be ahead of the curve and have a steady clientele base before every other lawyer catches on and tries to ride in on the new wave? The best thing any lawyer can do is keep up with the times, and look into your options.
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