Friday, April 16, 2010

How To Make Money As A Lawyer - Rainmaking Is For Losers

As I look in my handy little program that tells me what google searches lead people to this blog, I am of course not surprised to say that "How to make money as a lawyer" still leads the pack.

This is not a search done with the same attitude that someone searches for, let's say "how to remove gum from a shoe." This search is done with anger, frustration, and the desire for immediate relief. The search is really "I went to law school, have $100,000 in loans, I missed the cut on the entitlement to my BigLaw job and mahogany desk, and I want my damn money so tell me how to make money as a lawyer, NOW."

Today we talk about the term that is running around the internet as much as unemployed social media experts that used to be lawyers before they were laid off, disbarred, arrested, or otherwise just got tired of working in an office that didn't have young people in green shirts working behind a counter and asking "room for cream?"


"an influential employee who creates a great deal of business or revenue for his or her firm." rainmaking n

"One who is known for achieving excellent results in a profession or field, such as business or politics."

"A rainmaker is also a person who can initiate progress, take a leadership role, and have the drive to succeed."

Well, here's my advice if you are trolling the internet looking to "make money as a lawyer:"

Forget Rainmaking.

At it's core, a rainmaker is someone who has deep relationships with a vast number of people that send business their way just like an open cloud sends rain from the sky.

This method, the true method of becoming a rainmaker, takes way too long. It can take 10 years before a lawyer, a real lawyer with clients, becomes known as a rainmaker.

You don't really want to be a rainmaker, you want to "make money as a lawyer," and waiting is not an option.

So spam.

Advertise like there is no tomorrow.

Plaster your card and name everywhere you can.

Forget becoming a rainmaker. A rainmaker is an influential employee who creates a great deal of business or revenue for his or her firm.

You don't want that. It takes becoming a good lawyer, gaining the respect of your colleagues and others in the community. It will only wind up causing you to have big cases, great clients, and a wonderful practice.

You're focused on making money as a lawyer.

That's not a rainmaker.

So stop frustrating yourself by asking how you become a rainmaker.

If you want to make money as a lawyer, your time is better spent with the guy from the yellow pages, the dude that can teach you to play on twitter, the life coach that can help you create a fan page on Facebook.

It's simple. Easy.

That's what you wanted upon graduation right? A simple, easy way to make money?

There you have it.

Screw the rainmakers. They're too busy establishing themselves as influential professionals.

Located in Miami, Florida, Brian Tannebaum practices Bar Admission and Discipline and Criminal Defense. He is the author of I Got A Bar Complaint.



Mirriam Seddiq said...


Sarah (@Sarahgoat) said...

As usual, spot on. Though one shouldn't feel bad about just making money. The world needs cogs and gears as well as engines. Just don't confuse it with intellectual achievement.

Anonymous said...

As someone who has a great practice, tons of respect, and feel like a leader, there is still the problem of just making money. They are not the same thing at all.