9 Tips To Improve Time Management For Lawyers

Invoicera
8 min readSep 13, 2022
9 Tips To Improve Time Management For Lawyers

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Lawyers are busy people, which means that time management is especially important for them if they want to maximize their productivity and maintain a healthy work-life balance.

Time management isn’t an innate skill — instead, it’s something that you learn over time. It may seem like time management will always be difficult, but you can improve your skills over time, as long as you are willing to apply yourself and think about how you are spending your time throughout the day.

Here are nine tips to improve time management for lawyers and boost productivity and efficiency so you can focus on doing the things that matter most.

9 Tips To Improve Time Management For Lawyers

1. Follow The 80/20 Rule

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Are you getting enough work done? Clients are demanding more and more of your time, but you still have to deliver results while managing a full plate of billable hours. That’s why it’s crucial to follow something called the 80/20 rule: Devote 20 percent of your time to tasks that contribute 80% of your bottom line.

Let’s say you have a few dozen client matters to deal with. It doesn’t make sense to spend equal amounts of time on each. Some cases will be more important than others, and some clients are more demanding than others. As you work through your case list, assign a value from 1 to 10 for every case, where one is not important, and 10 is critical. Then give 20% of your attention to your top-priority cases that form 80% of your revenue.

2. Schedule Email Time In Your Day

Although some emailing can be done anywhere and at any time, you should make an effort to schedule certain email times in your day — evenings and weekends included. Although not many people realize it, but what we do with our time really does matter. By scheduling specific \time for emails, you’ll begin to reduce stress and boost your productivity.

Moreover, if you let people know when you are available for emailing (i.e., 9 a.m.-5 p.m.), they will get accustomed to reaching out only during these hours. This isn’t always an easy task; however, even little things count while managing time efficiently!

If you’re just not a morning person, plan to check email later in your day. If you work later at night, schedule time for email right before bed. It might sound crazy to schedule times to check email — but it works!

3. Stop Working Late Nights

A lot of lawyers (and other professionals) believe that they need to work late each night to ensure they’re on top of things and staying ahead of their workload. The thing is, working from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., and also late nights, is not an effective time management strategy — it’s just poor time management. It doesn’t mean you shouldn’t work hard; it just means that you need to be realistic about your schedule and only include a reasonable amount of additional time in your schedule for late nights and emergencies.

4. Set Clear Goals

Set Clear Goals

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One of the best ways to improve time management for lawyers is by setting clear and achievable goals that can give you a much clearer idea of what it is that you are aiming for. By setting specific and measurable objectives, you’ll have a better idea of where to focus your efforts. It is a handy tip if you’re involved in time-consuming legal cases. Goals can help clarify exactly what you’re working towards so that as soon as a goal has been reached, you can use those dedicated hours to do the next important thing.

If you focus all your energy on achieving one big thing, moving on to other tasks becomes easier when those goals are achieved. You can also use an employee time tracking app to keep a tab on your goals to achieve them quickly.

5. Create A Routine

Like most professionals, lawyers too have to juggle multiple roles at once. Clients and co-workers depend on them to be available and productive, so you must improve your time management skills. Making sure you’re focused during work hours will also help improve your overall efficiency as an attorney. Just remember: being organized isn’t just about maximizing productivity — it’s also about doing what works for you. Once you develop a routine that fits your schedule, stick with it!

And don’t forget to keep things fun; if your routine feels like a chore, chances are you’ll skip or cut corners.

6. Do One Thing At A Time

Constantly jumping from task to task is a recipe for being less efficient, not more. Multitasking may seem to be something that can save you time and make you more productive, but in reality, it leads to burning out faster and performing tasks with less accuracy and efficiency. Don’t try to finish multiple things simultaneously. Choose one thing that needs your attention and focus on it until it’s complete. The best way to do one thing at a time is by writing a list of tasks in order of importance before heading into work each day to know what you should tackle first.

Don’t try to get ahead of schedule. If a task requires more time than you have assigned it, and something urgent drops on your head, it’s best to set it aside and return to it when you can dedicate more time to working on it.

7. Set Deadlines

Set Deadlines

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We’re usually so buried in work that we don’t set deadlines for ourselves. But setting deadlines will help you manage your time better because they motivate you to get things done on time. Try writing a list of daily, weekly, and monthly goals (followed by realistic deadlines) to keep yourself focused and moving forward. You might even consider using an online tool like Workstatus or Trello to create a virtual organization system for yourself.

Set realistic deadlines, so you don’t get too stressed out. However, you should also remember that deadlines can help you tackle tasks with more focus because they motivate and encourage you to follow through. So whenever possible, make a list of both long-term and short-term goals and be sure to set clear deadlines for each one. Remember to reward yourself when you achieve milestones!

Sign up to try the best time billing software for lawyers and always stay ahead of your deadlines-

8. Break It Down Into Manageable Chunks

If you have to tackle a big project, break it down into small chunks. Don’t try to do everything at once; put your time into something manageable and bite-sized so that you can work on it regularly without getting overwhelmed. Also, give yourself deadlines for each chunk (e.g., finish chunk A by the end of the day) to check things off your list as you go along. If necessary, assign specific times of day for certain tasks, so there are no surprises about when they need to get done — it’s easy to forget when time is not being accounted for!

9. Use Attorney Time Tracking And Time Management Tools

As a lawyer, you have a lot of tasks to complete. Your schedule is packed with meetings, deadlines, and other responsibilities. If you don’t know how to manage time effectively, feeling overwhelmed and stressed can be easy. The best way to improve your time management skills is by using attorney time tracking tools that will help you stay organized and focused. Many options are available for lawyers who want to improve their time management skills.

Some of these tools include Workstatus, Hubstaff, TimeDoctor, etc. You can also use Google Calendar to keep track of appointments and tasks, making things easier for you in terms of staying on top of everything.

Try out some different tools and see what works best for you!

What To Consider Before Investing In A Time Management Tool For Lawyers?

What To Consider Before Investing In A Time Management Tool For Lawyers?

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Before investing in any time management tool for lawyers, it’s essential to consider your specific needs and what will be the most effective way to help you meet your goals.

For example, if you’re looking for a way to organize and track your tasks, a task manager might be the best option. But if you need a tool to help you reduce distractions and improve focus, a productivity app or related browser extension might be more suitable.

It’s also crucial to consider what amount of time you’re willing to invest in learning how to use the tool and how much ongoing maintenance it will require. Some tools may require more ongoing effort to maintain, such as regularly entering data or syncing with other devices and apps.

Finally, it’s essential to examine the cost of the tool. Some attorney time management tools are free, while others have a subscription fee. There are also one-time purchase options for some tools. Consider your budget and decide what you’re willing to spend on a time management tool.

Closing Thoughts

While time management is essential for all professionals, it’s vital for lawyers. Juggling a caseload, meeting deadlines, and billing clients can be hectic and stressful. But, by implementing the right tools and techniques, you can manage your time more effectively and reduce stress.

In this post, we’ve shared nine tips to improve time management for lawyers. We also recommend using effective time and billing software for law firms. This will help you track how you’re spending your time and identify areas where you can make improvements.

Try the best time and billing software for lawyers to improve your time management skills-

Are there any other tips you like to add to this list? Let us know in the comments below.

Thanks for reading!!

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