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SBM & ICLE

Solo & Small Firm Institute cosponsored by the State Bar of Michigan and ICLE, in cooperation with the following:

General Practice—Solo & Small Firm SectionFounding Sponsor

Law Practice Management & Legal Administrators Section

Business Law Section

Practice Management Resource Center

 

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Solo & Small Firm Institute Schedule
Thursday | Friday
 
Thursday, September 18, 2014

SSFI Moderators

    Plenary Session/Substantive Law Track
    Tanisha Monique Davis, Law Offices of Tanisha M. Davis PLLC, Detroit

    Marketing/Law Practice Management Track
    Patrick J. Crowley, Crowley Cornish Rockafellow & Sartz PLLC, Lansing

    Technology Track
    Bradley K. Glazier, Bos & Glazier PLC, Grand Rapids

Time Event
8:00–9:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast

8:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. Vendor Showcase and Registration

8:15–9:00 a.m. SSFI: Put the ICLE Partnership Resources to Work for Your Practice—Demonstration by ICLE Staff
Are you making the most of your Partnership resources? Do you really know everything that you have and how to use it? Learn to make the most of your Partnership resources and to use the website effectively on a computer or mobile device. Discover the Partnership's main resources and primary law research capabilities and get tips for quickly finding what you need. Plus, use the Community to network and get specific practice questions answered.

9:00–9:20 a.m. SSFI: Welcome and Introductions
Tanisha Monique Davis, Chair, General Practice—Solo & Small Firm Section of the State Bar of Michigan, Law Offices of Tanisha M. Davis PLLC, Detroit

9:20–9:40 a.m. SSFI: Report from the Executive Director
Greetings from the State Bar's executive director with an update on Bar activities of special interest to solo and small firm practitioners.
Janet K. Welch, Executive Director, State Bar of Michigan, Lansing

9:40–10:40 a.m. SSFI KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Client Development for 2014 and Beyond
The principles of client development have not changed over many years. The tools have changed. In this program Cordell M. Parvin will discuss the old and new tools for client development and how to use them most effectively.
Cordell M. Parvin, Cordell Parvin LLC, Dallas, TX

10:40–11:00 a.m. Vendor Showcase Break

11:00–Noon SSFI Substantive Law Track: Family Law Update
Family practice continues to change rapidly. Stay on top of all the latest developments with an analysis of the most important changes during the last year.
Devin R. Day, Affinity RizzoBryan PC, Grand Rapids
  SSFI Marketing/Law Practice Management Track: How to Develop an Effective Business Plan
A lawyer's time and energy are his or her two most important resources. A written plan with goals ensures that you are focusing and using your time and energy most effectively. At the end of this session you will have the first draft of your plan for 2015.
Cordell M. Parvin, Cordell Parvin LLC, Dallas, TX
  SSFI Technology Track: Does Microsoft Office 365 Suit Your Law Office?
Explore the benefits of Office 365. Learn how it works, what it does best, the different packages available, plus discover how lawyers are using it today.
Barron K. Henley, Affinity Consulting Group, Columbus, OH

Noon–2:00 p.m. Lunch & Annual Meeting Functions

2:00–2:45 p.m. SSFI Substantive Law Track: Criminal Law Update
Stay on top of this fast-paced area of law with the most current information on criminal statutes, court rules, and caselaw and what it all means for your criminal law practice.
Timothy K. McMorrow, Kent County Prosecutor's Office, Grand Rapids
  SSFI Marketing/Law Practice Management Track: Blogging and Social Media
Cordell M. Parvin shares ideas on how to use a blog and social media to attract, retain, and expand relationships with clients. Bring your iPad if you have one.
Cordell M. Parvin, Cordell Parvin LLC, Dallas, TX
  SSFI Technology Track: Access Your Documents from Anywhere and Share Them With Others
Explore the latest services and devices that allow you to: 1) access your word processor documents and scanned files from anywhere; 2) use any device of your choosing to retrieve those files; and 3) securely share documents with coworkers, clients, and anyone else. Discover options beyond Dropbox, plus uncover ways to send large files securely to others using e-mail encryption services.
Barron K. Henley, Affinity Consulting Group, Columbus, OH

2:50–3:35 p.m. SSFI Substantive Law Track: Planning for Long-Term Care
Maximize your clients' long-term care options through practical estate planning, and understand how Medicare, long-term care insurance, and Medicaid may help pay for that care.
Christopher W. Smith, Chalgian & Tripp Law Offices PLLC, Jackson
  SSFI Marketing/Law Practice Management Track: Little Big Firm
Think size matters? Think again! You don't have to work for "big law" to thrive. Join us and learn to unleash your potential. You'll find that by eliminating big law "administrivia" and becoming “lean and mean" you can excel in the solo and small firm practice of law.
JoAnn L. Hathaway, Practice Management Advisor, State Bar of Michigan, Lansing
  SSFI Technology Track: Case/Matter Management Software Update
The last five years have seen a flood of new legal case/matter management programs. Barron explains the functionality offered by case/matter management applications and outlines and demonstrates some of your best options, both shrink-wrapped (such as PracticeMaster) and web-based (such as Clio or ActionStep).
Barron K. Henley, Affinity Consulting Group, Columbus, OH

3:35–3:55 p.m. Vendor Showcase Break

3:55–4:40 p.m. SSFI Substantive Law Track: Basics of Employment Law for Small Businesses
Stay fresh on essential employment law basics for small businesses with this primer. Learn best practices for hiring and firing employees, as well as the elements of a comprehensive company policy handbook.
C. John Holmquist Jr., Holmquist Employment Law Firm PLLC, Troy
  SSFI Marketing/Law Practice Management Track: Expanding Relationships With Existing Clients
It is significantly more time consuming to attract a new client than to expand a relationship with an existing client. Learn what clients want and how to exceed their expectations.
Cordell M. Parvin, Cordell Parvin LLC, Dallas, TX
  SSFI Technology Track: What is a Virtual Practice?
Virtual practices are all the rage, but what are they? Find out what it means to practice virtually, the costs and benefits of running your practice this way, technology that may be required, potential enhanced confidentiality concerns, how it can impact the practice of law, and other things to consider before starting a virtual practice.
Diane Ebersole, Practice Management Advisor, State Bar of Michigan, Lansing

4:45–5:35 p.m. SSFI Substantive Law Track: Trends in Criminal Law: Drug Recognition Experts
Drug Recognition Experts (DREs) are increasingly used to determine whether a person operated a vehicle under the influence of drugs. Learn the rules for this new program and tips on how to expose any errors in the DRE's evaluation of your client.
Jeffery S. Crampton, Koernke & Crampton PC, Grand Rapids

  SSFI Marketing/Law Practice Management Track: Cutting Costs, Not Corners
This is your guide to free and inexpensive hardware, software, apps, and resources for lawyers. Whether you are building a new firm or looking to add to your existing practice, providing maximum service for your clients does not have to break the bank.
Patrick J. Crowley, Crowley Cornish Rockafellow & Sartz PLLC, Lansing
  SSFI Technology Track: 50 Tech Tips in 50 Minutes
Fast-paced and fun, covering everything under the technology sun! From cool websites to apps to gadgets and utilities, attend the fastest 50 minutes in CLE to learn the technology that will let you work smarter, faster, and more efficiently.
Barron K. Henley, Affinity Consulting Group, Columbus, OH
   
Friday, September 19, 2014

SSFI Moderators

Time Event
8:00–9:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast

8:00 a.m.–2:00 p.m. Registration & Vendor Showcase

8:15–9:00 a.m. SSFI: Put the ICLE Partnership Resources to Work for Your Practice—Demonstration by ICLE Staff
Are you making the most of your Partnership resources? Do you really know everything that you have and how to use it? Learn to make the most of your Partnership resources and to use the website effectively on a computer or mobile device. Discover the Partnership's main resources and primary law research capabilities and get tips for quickly finding what you need. Plus, use the Community to network and get specific practice questions answered.

9:00–10:00 a.m. SSFI KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: Finding an Extra Hour Every Day: Time Management for Busy Professionals
Using humor and high energy, Randall F. Dean addresses common areas of productivity loss afflicting many busy professionals today: managing multiple projects, maintaining "traction" when dealing with tasks and interruptions, managing your e-mails more efficiently, clearing the clutter in your mind for better focus and attention, keeping staff on task, tracking "who owes you what" and getting that information on time, and using your calendar and contacts for better time and relationship management. Learn several new and immediately useful strategies for finding a few minutes on tasks, activities, and actions you are already doing to get at least an extra hour of productivity every day.
Randall F. Dean, Randall Dean Consulting & Training LLC, East Lansing

10:00–10:50 a.m. SSFI KEYNOTE PRESENTATION: It's Time For a Change—Better Methods for Generating Complex Documents
Carefully crafted model documents and templates represent the best of what you and your firm knows. They help prevent malpractice and increase profitability, and are a primary method for transferring knowledge to others in your firm. In spite of this, most law offices do not have a comprehensive set of go-to forms and base documents. Barron shows you how to find the best of what your firm has created in the past. You'll learn the rules for consolidating your intellectual capital into usable templates and see demonstrations of automation tools ranging from the amazing things your word processor is capable of to document assembly applications like HotDocs. Prepare to be amazed at the possibilities.
Barron K. Henley, Affinity Consulting Group, Columbus, OH

10:50–11:10 a.m. Vendor Showcase Break

11:10 a.m.–Noon SSFI Substantive Law Track: Best Estate Planning Practices for Nontraditional Families
Understand key factors and take away drafting tips to plan for nontraditional families, including premarital considerations, spousal rights upon death, drafting for and asking about awkward topics, planning for unmarried and same-sex couples, and planning in light of the DOMA decision.
Michael P. Witzke, Witzke Berry Carter & Wander PLLC, Bloomfield Hills

  SSFI Marketing/Law Practice Management Track: Ending the Office Clutter: Key Strategies for Managing Info Overload
Get control of "the beast" of information overload and all of your stacks and piles. Learn to reduce the mess on your desk by having natural places to put all of your papers, project folders, and items to read. Develop strategies and systems for effective and efficient management of your workstation and explore the possibilities and technology required to move toward a paperless workspace. Learn to get rid of all of the annoying clutter and keep it under control forever.
Randall F. Dean, Randall Dean Consulting & Training LLC, East Lansing
  SSFI Technology Track: Buying Great Tech at a Low Price
Michigan's own technology "cheapskate" and author of The Cheapskate Rules: 21 Easy Money—Saving Tech Secrets, Rick Broida, scours the Web daily for great deals on PCs, phones, gadgets, and more. Gain his strategies for finding great deals on the technology that lawyers need.
Rick Broida, CNET Blog Network, Commerce Township

Noon–2:00 p.m. Lunch & Annual Meeting Functions

2:00–2:50 p.m. SSFI Substantive Law Track: Navigating the New Tax Assessment Uncapping Rules
Public Act 497 of 2012 altered the real property assessment uncapping rules in Michigan. In light of the law's history, learn how the new Act might be interpreted and applied.
Nyal D. Deems, Varnum LLP, Grand Rapids

  SSFI Marketing/Law Practice Management Track: Earning Your Fame and Fortune with a Niche Practice
Becoming known for a niche takes hard work but gets results. With guidance from a professional coach, take the initial steps to explore your interests, focus on your knowledge and passions, and use your strengths inside and outside of law to build your successful niche practice.
Elizabeth C. Jolliffe, Your Benchmark Coach, Ann Arbor
  SSFI Technology Track: Buying a Laptop Today
The question Barron is asked more than any other is, "What laptop should I buy?" Get Barron's advice on the specs that matter and manufacturers you can trust.
Barron K. Henley, Affinity Consulting Group, Columbus, OH

2:55–3:45 p.m. SSFI Substantive Law Track: Hot Topics in Marijuana Law
Get an expert's take on where the law is now, where it's going, and how it affects various arenas, both civil and criminal.
Gerald A. Fisher, Thomas M. Cooley Law School, Auburn Hills
  SSFI Marketing/Law Practice Management Track: How to Prepare to Wind Down or End Your Practice
Follow tried and true procedures when you wrap up your practice. Gain practical pointers on identifying active and closed files, notifying clients how to get their files, preserving primary documents, identifying client moneys, and identifying inventory attorneys. Get straight talk from the lawyer who has seen it all and can help you steer clear of trouble.
Robert E. Edick, Deputy Grievance Administrator, Michigan Attorney Grievance Commission, Detroit
  SSFI Technology Track: Efficient Billing and Accounting for a Small Firm
You may not even like to hear the word accounting; but efficient, accurate accounting is essential to the success of your practice. Explore your legal-specific accounting options and the inadequacies of generic accounting software like QuickBooks. If you currently use two programs for billing and accounting, now is the time to find a single solution that works for you!
Barron K. Henley, Affinity Consulting Group, Columbus, OH

3:45–4:00 p.m. Networking Break

4:00–4:45 p.m. SSFI Substantive Law Track: Rules of Evidence from the Judge's Side of the Bench
Litigators all employ the rules of evidence in trial, but how well? Get an insider's view from a former circuit court judge as he shares tales of the common mistakes lawyers make in the use—and misuse—of the rules of evidence.
Dennis C. Kolenda, Of Counsel, Dickinson Wright PLLC, Grand Rapids
  SSFI Marketing/Law Practice Management Track: Closing the Deal: Turning Prospects into Clients
Learn to screen and qualify prospective clients, bring them to your office and convert them into paying clients. Gain practical techniques to not only secure paying clients but create a positive relationship with them. This session will also discuss how to plan for prospective client meetings and stay in control of the process.
Timothy A. Dinan, Dinan & Associates PC, Grosse Pointe Park
  SSFI Technology Track: Communication Breakdown—It's Always The Same
A very high percentage of practice management and client-relations problems are caused by bad communication, from decreased productivity and mistakes to dissatisfied clients and malpractice actions. The growing number of communication channels only compounds the problem. Examine technologies and techniques that will help you improve internal and external communication, lower your stress, improve your service, generate happier clients, and lower your malpractice risk.
Barron K. Henley, Affinity Consulting Group, Columbus, OH

 

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