The Law Office of Marc Snyder has been using Ruby®‘s virtual receptionist service for almost three years now, and we’ve enjoyed getting to know each person in the practice. We thought Marc would be perfect for our Client Spotlight series where we feature current Ruby clients. Continuing our series, I asked Marc about his experience managing a small law firm and what advice he would give to other lawyers just starting out.
Tell us about your firm
I became a lawyer almost 15 years ago, most of which I worked for my father’s firm handling serious injury claims. For anyone who’s ever worked for a parent before, you can already relate to how difficult this can be. About 4 years ago, I decided that I was finished with it and decided to go out on my own. Since then I’ve hired one full-time staff member, and have two part-time employees, and Ruby, of course.
You and Joe Bowers recently came out with a book entitled Buying Automobile Insurance in Maryland. What inspired you to write it?
We handle a lot of Maryland auto accidents, and over the past few years have seen too many clients “underpaid” in their claims because of the at-fault driver and themselves having inadequate insurance. Between this and feeling that most people don’t know what they’re buying when they shop for auto insurance, we thought we could help out a broad audience with this guide. We’ve had a lot of requests for it since putting it out there, so we’d like to think we’re right!
If you could give one piece of advice to other attorneys just starting out, what would it be?
Have a live person answering the phone. I’m not just saying this because I’m writing this for Ruby, but we’ve handled a handful of million and multi-million dollar claims, and even more that were only worth a few thousand dollars. When the phone rings the first time they both sound exactly the same! My experience has shown me that when you don’t talk to someone right away, you call the next law office.
What do you think the key is to a good work/life balance?
Being able to turn off the phone and step away every so often. I know this is somewhat contradictory to the answer to the last question, but if you don’t take a step away and “disappear” every so often, you’ll lose your mind.
What’s your favorite productivity tool in your office?
Our practice management software, Clio. It’s entirely web driven, so when I’m at the beach or my case manager is in Las Vegas or New Hampshire or wherever he is this week, he can check in and access anything.
How has having Ruby’s virtual receptionist service affected your business day-to-day?
Over the past year I’ve built up a tremendous volume of criminal clients. Being a criminal lawyer in Baltimore puts me in court A LOT, and with one full-time staff member, I think it’s saved his sanity as much as it’s saved mine. The ability to have all my calls handled by a live person, treated politely and filed accordingly (to voicemail/message/etc.) while my staff can continue to actually work on cases and bring in money is great.