And welcome back to the HERO Show Richard Matthews here
And I am still at the beach, for my regular listeners here.
Still don’t have any internet service where we’re traveling.
I am on the line with Jordan Ostroff, Jordan, are you there?
Awesome. Glad to have you here, Jordan.
Let me do a brief introduction for you
Let me do a brief introduction for you.
And then we can get going. And Jordan is the –
What is it you’re called, the managing partner at a law firm?
And that is Jordan Law, Florida. And you also teach students
At Barry University, you do the mock trial team.
And you teach students how to be attorneys and witnesses
And several other things there, which sounds very cool
And a lot of fun. So, to get this kicked off, let’s start off
With what you’re known for now?
What is it that people hire you for? What’s your business? Like?
What is it that you do?
So, it’s funny, over the last year or so I’ve started telling people
Instead of being a lawyer, I tell people
I’m a small bit business owner who runs a law firm.
I think that’s so much more important.
We’ve got five attorneys at the firm, my job really is the CEO.
So people are hiring us for our fantastic client experience.
They’re hiring us based upon, all of our attorneys having
A lot of experience being in court, but also the focus
We put on customer service. Usually they’re hiring us
For either criminal defense, personal injury or business law needs.
Awesome. And so you also mentioned that you teach.
Is teaching part of your business model?
Or is teaching something you do as a way
To give back to the community?
You know, that’s a good question. It’s sort of a little bit of both.
We work with a lot of students.
We represent them and legal issues. And so oftentimes,
They’ll have a problem where, it could be cheating
On a test that, they could be picking up a criminal case.
They’ll also have an issue at school. And so they have to, in essence,
Represent themselves. So the same stuff that we do
For the teaching applies to them. But for the most part,
I mean, I like teaching because I’m where I’m at,
Because of some fantastic mentors.
And I feel like it’s sort of my obligation to give back
To the next generation of lawyers from that standpoint.
Awesome. That’s really cool. So let’s talk a little bit about
Your origin story.We talked on the show all the time,
Every hero has an origin story. It’s where you started to realize
That you were different. That maybe you had superpowers,
And maybe you could use them to help other people,
What sort of set you on this path of, as you called it,
A business owner who happens to run a law firm.
So my origin story, and this is going to be trite for every lawyer is
Goes back to me being like four or five,
I don’t remember not wanting to be a lawyer,
Even though I had no idea what it entailed, what it was, etc.
My parents can tell me that as far back as they remember,
The only thing was, I wanted to be a doctor for six weeks,
And then I realized people could die in front of me,
And I decided I want to be a lawyer.
… you’re already done at that point,
So from that point, it’s always been what I wanted to do,
Even though I had no idea what that meant.
So I was lucky enough, in high school, we had to go job shadow.
And my grandmother was at an adult living facility
With another lady who, her son was a judge.
So I got to go and follow him around for a day
And see kind of behind the scenes. I came up to UCF Marina, Go Knights.
I don’t know if it comes up …
There you go.
And I got to do the mock trial team over there. And I realized,
“Oh, my God, this is what I want.” Arguing with people
And telling people I’m right. And using rules of evidence
To explain to them why I’m right. It all kind of – ripple.
So how did you make that transition from, because my –
If I understand the law industry properly,
Not every lawyer is a business owner, but some lawyers are.
Like in your case, they actually run the law firm or do something,
There’s a lot of lawyers who just practice law.
How did you make that transition? Or have you always been
Someone who’s running your own business?
How that sort of go down for you?
So I started out actually, as a prosecutor. So I left law school.
I prosecuted in Orange County, so I was –
People, allegedly would break the law, I would charge them and
Punish them for that or try to help them get
Drug treatment or whatnot. And then I realized I wasn’t –
I didn’t get the same sense of enjoyment out of it.
And I think a lot of it was because I was on that side.
So I left and went over the defense side. And so that way,
I was able to really have a client to help. And then the more I did it,
The more I realized that I could have so much more of an impact.
As a business owner, you talked about, not every lawyer
Is a business owner, there’s a ton of phenomenal lawyers out there.
There’s a lot fewer lawyers that are good business owners.
And it would be easier for me and my firm to help
Two hundred people a year instead of 50 people a year
If I went into kind of the business role of it because
You can find great lawyer. That was sort of the easiest thing to do,
Was to find more fantastic lawyers that
Didn’t want to worry about the business owner stuff.
And so we’ve been able to use that to kind of continue to grow,
Grow into where we’re at now. Helping people with whatever –
Usually the worst thing in their life.
So how has the transition been from being a lawyer
To becoming a CEO of a law firm?
So for me, the transition has been great. It’s another one
Of those, where I kind of fell, but backwards,
Into what I actually like, the more I started doing the business stuff,
The more I realized that I really enjoyed that part of it.
I enjoyed the putting that message together and selling that story
To a client and how we can help. And getting that out there across
Social media and different channels, just as much as
I enjoyed the actual arguing for them in court.
And so it’s just been, it’s been a nice transition for me.
Because by getting out of the more the legal day to day,
I can have, our firm, can have so much more of an impact.
So now you’re – Instead of the impact on one client
That you might be able to have as a lawyer or
A handful of clients at any given time, you’re able
To work with a huge set of clients as a larger law firm,
And have a larger impact. That’s really cool.
So my –
So for example, today, three of the other lawyers were in court.
One of them had a trial, the other ones had some hearings,
And I was able to interview somebody for our podcast,
And then do a couple consultations at the office, rather than,
Only being able to be in court, one place at one time.
That’s really awesome. It’s sort of growing your reach.
And that’s one of the things I love best about business.
Is business allows you to have –
We talked about it regularly on the show is the ripple effect.
Is you get to have a much larger impact
Than the work that’s put in because you leverage
Other people’s time. And my next question for you
Has to do with your superpowers.
So every superhero has their superpowers. It’s what you do,
Or build or offer this world that really help
Solve problems for people. The things that you use to slay
This world’s villains, so to speak. So if you could maybe –
Two hats, your business owner CEO hat,
What would your superpower be there, and then maybe,
As your lawyer, what’s your superpower in that role?
In all honesty, I mean, I actually have the same hat for both.
Our superpower is going to be technology.
Our firm prides itself on and will a lot of my job is focusing on
The latest technology for lawyers. And automating,
As much as possible so that you can spend more time
On the stuff that isn’t automateable. So if we can have a
Notice of Appearance generate immediately
Once the client has hired us and somebody just has to e-file it.
That’s five minutes here, it’s 10 minutes there,
That adds up so that when it comes to a real important legal issue,
Something very new and novel and technical,
My attorneys and my staff has 15 more hours a week
That they’re not wasting on stupid little things
That we’ve been – that we’ve automated.
Updating people about court dates, scheduling these things,
Putting together a lot of the consistent filings.
So that’s our superpower is technology,
We’re techno kinetics or whatever it would be.
So using some of the new technology to bring it to
What is, I guess, traditionally a more hands-on paper industry
And using that to trim the fat, so you can use
The expertise in the places that really, really need it.
So, the easiest way to explain it is;
On day one, had a client come in, thankfully hired me.
My first day as a private attorney, I believe in the state.
And so I had to take somebody else’s form for their
Notice of Appearance and manually edit the name
And the case number and the county and the addresses
And all those things, and then print it out, sign it, rescan it,
E-file it with the Florida e- filing portal for the court to know that
I was on the case. And then that triggers the state,
Had to send me e-discovery, etc. Now we’ve automated it.
So that person is already in our CRM.
They’ve already gone through everything.
They can electronically sign their signature, to the contract.
They can electronically sign this form.
It goes right to my paralegal, who then can turn around
And take the digital version, and e-file that right there immediately
Without anybody having to change, edit, whatever
Because that data is already there. So you’re talking about
Fifteen, twenty minutes that gets saved on every single case
Because on every criminal case, you have to
Let the court know that you represent the person.
And that adds up fast.
Absolutely. I imagine that also … has impact on
Billable hours to turn to clients, as well.
Where their actually getting a … more efficient bill?
Definitely. I mean, I can tell you about a client tell us
That they – “We got to bill that was shockingly low.”
But no, I mean, absolutely, we’re able to consistently come in and
Disrupt an already existing hourly market by charging
A slightly lower rate or charging the same rate and using
So many fewer hours because of technology.
I’m not charging them for the automated system that I …
So the other side of your superpower is your fatal flaw.
Superman is kryptonite. It’s the thing in your business
Or in your own personality that has held you back
In growing your business. Something you you have to work on.
And so the the other question or what I’m looking for
Is basically what would you say that fatal flaw is
And what have you done to sort of overcome it
To help sort of grow your business and overcome those issues?
That’s a good one. I would say, for me, my fatal flaw is
Expecting the same level of involvement by in, etc,
From everybody else that I would give on any sort of project,
Regardless of what’s in it for me, regardless of what
I’m getting paid for it or anything along those lines.
So that’s probably been my biggest issue is trying to
Not necessarily temper my expectations, but actually have
A more in depth conversation with mostly employees
About what I expect from them. The other problem that I have
That I have not been able to solve my other kryptonite,
Would be Florida Bar rules, and I totally get,
Most of them are in place to protect clients.
But one of the problems that we see is you can’t give
A non-attorney anything of value for a case.
So it’s really difficult to incentivize staff or incentivize non-attorney
Marketing people without breaking that rule.
And so I just don’t, and we try and do
What we can for them elsewhere. But I think that’s something
That would help a law firm grow its business correctly,
Is if you identified the ability to bonus a staff member
For bringing an ideal client if they’re not an attorney.
And I get the slippery slope but I get it.
But I think it handcuffs firms away from doing things the right way.
That’s an interesting thing you have to deal with.
Because I talked all the time about how like incentive structures
Are what … around. We generally operate out of our own self interest.
So you have to build incentives around getting outcome that you want.
And you’re in a place where you have the laws ending
The way of building proper incentive structures.
So you have to come up with other ways to incentivize your staff.
And I think that’s, I think that’s why lawyers are easy targets
For marketing companies, for better or worse.
But it’s just, it’s interesting to me because you would think that
You’d have a better chance growing it the right way.
Grassroots through personal involvement.
But obviously, that does you no good for you’re non-attorney staff.
Absolutely. So, and I don’t know how you would solve that.
The other flaw … Because t … to buy in.
It reminds me of, I think it’s the book – The book, Good to Great,
Where they talked about getting, and how you’re helping people,
And that has helped them and have the kind of
I don’t know what you call it, the kind of drive that the owner has.
Like that you or I would have on your team?
And I do, I would imagine, but I’ve noticed that’s been helpful –
Just have to have a view of how do you think
That plays into to your staff?
Well, so a lot of what we’ve been able to do is explain
To people the growth that they have inside the firm.
So I had it, I had a former attorney of ours
That actually started out as my first intern ever.
So he was, 10 bucks an hour, 5 to 10 hours a week helping me
With a lot of the filing and other small things like that.
And then, over summers would come back as paralegal,
A legal assistant, and then eventually joined our firm
As an attorney. And so we’re able to get good buy in by
When we’re looking at staff, trying to identify what
Their five year plan is, and targeting people that either;
A, want to end up becoming a paralegal as a long term career or
B, end up wanting to be a lawyer as a long term career.
And that’s kind of the best way that we’ve found to get that
Buy in is people that want – don’t want this as a job,
They want this as the first stage to a lifetime career.
So you’re going back to that incentive structure.
How do you find the right incentive to get the buy in?
And you found it’s like, the long term career.
So, okay, cool. Next, I want to talk about your common enemy.
And I like to think of your common enemy in terms of your clients or
Your customers. If you could, when someone hired you
About your products, your services, if you could wave
Your magic wand and sort of remove one thing
From their life that is holding them back,
And we can get them results even better or cheaper, or faster.
What would that thing be?
The thing that you fight against in your company?
That’s a good question. The thing that I like
Is we’re able to target- We’re able to say ‘no’ to clients.
A lot of firms don’t do that. And so they’re stuck with
Clients that have unrealistic expectations.
So for us, I always try to have the conversation with a client
Of ‘what does a win look like for you?’
And sometimes that win is something that we will get.
I think 95% of the time, sometimes it’s something
That’s impossible. If it’s impossible, we’ll always try to walk
Back their expectations of something
That’s a lot more reasonable. And then the thing is, from that,
Having handled 10,000 some cases, we’re fighting against
The other side, we’re fighting against case law, we’re fighting against,
Precedent in the facts, but by managing the expectations
Were able to overcome it because I can let my client or
I can let my potential client know,
“This isn’t going to turn out well for you,”
Which is a question of how much we can mitigate it.
And some of those people will still hire us, and some of us
Will find a lawyer, that gives them a much rosier answer.
But I think if you do it that way, then you end up fighting
Against your own client, which I don’t ever want to have to do.
So, a lot of that the common enemy is learning how to
Select your clients well, and manage expectations.
It’s a two fold process. One is knowing the law of those areas
Well enough to know what’s a viable case, or what’s going to
Work out well for them, and then, two, putting yourself
In a position to say no to people. But I’ve had people
Come in on like a DUI, and I’m like,
“Hey, there’s a case directly on point that says,
This should be thrown out.”
Is that definitively going to happen? I don’t know.
But this is saying it should, as opposed to the same person
Comes in with totally different facts.
“Hey, there’s nothing I see that jumps out here.
So let’s try and get you the best resolution we can.”
And some people appreciate the honesty. And some people
Would rather have their lawyer lie to them, which,
If that’s the case, they find somebody else.
That makes a lot of sense.
So the other side of it, the common enemy is what you fight against.
And then your driving force is what you fight for.
Just like Spider Man fights to save New York or
Batman fights to save Gotham, or Google fights to save
All the- categorize all the world’s information.
What is it that you guys fight for at your law firm?
This is something that I struggle with all the time,
Because I think the common answer you’re going to get
From lawyers is we’re fighting for justice.
But the longer I do this, the more I realized that
That doesn’t really exist in the terms of what we have.
So a lot of what most of what I’m fighting for,
Is basically to time travel. It’s to time travel my client back to
Before this issue came up, as best as possible.
So if it’s a criminal case, they don’t go to prison
For the rest of their lives. They’re able to go back and
Spend time with their family and be at their house.
If it’s a personal injury case, we’re trying to get them
Enough money that they can either solve the medical issue,
Or at least have the future medical issues they’re going to
Have from this, paid for. So they don’t have to worry about it.
So, most of what we’re fighting for really, I think is
Putting people back in the position that they were in
Before they came to us.
That’s interesting. So if you think about, from a
Marketing message standpoint, you guys, what you fight for –
I like that you fight for time travel. We fight to bring you
Back to a life before you had an issue with the
Criminal justice system and turn back time.
I’ve never really thought about it that way.
Because I’ve never really had to deal with the
Justice system in any way. But that’s a really interesting way
To think about how, what lawyers are actually doing.
I think most lawyers lose sight of that. But if you’re, God forbid,
If your significant other or yourself or a family member got hurt
In a car accident, money doesn’t undo that.
So I think the concept that we’re fighting for justice
Isn’t necessarily correct. We’re just fighting to mitigate a problem
Or like I phrase it, time travel away from it or before it,
And make it go away. Or go away as much as possible.
A lot of times, there is no justice for things like a car accident,
That you had no control over, just have …
To learn how to get your life back together as best as possible.
So my next question for you, and …
… Is your heroes tool belt. Maybe a big magical hammer
Like Thor or bulletproof vest like your neighbor.
Or maybe you just really love how Evernote helps you
Organize your case stuff, what are some of the technology
And tools that you guys use to bring –
To breathe life into your organization.
So right now, I mean, the biggest one for us is a program
Called Lawmatics, but basically what that allows us to do is
Take, create our own intake forms. So my receptionist
Or my intake person can get the necessary information
That we need on – from a very basic level, and then that will do
Automatic follow up and it’ll send them emails and
Will text messages and whatever it is to get in touch with them.
That’s the biggest toolbox for us, before the case starts,
And then obviously, that’ll then generate the initial documents
And whatnot. After that, I go back to – it’s a lot harder
To automate the actual legal work. So then, our toolkit
At that point is having enough time, having a low enough
Caseload, having good enough attorneys,
Experienced enough attorneys, etc. to make the right arguments,
File the right motions, take the case to trial. Do a motion
To suppress a preliminary hearing, whatever it is.
It’s very hard. It’s very hard to use a tool kit for real legal work
And do a fantastic job other than just knowing
What you’re doing and doing well.
Music is by https://purpleplanet.com/
Cool. So next, what I want to talk about is your own
Personal heroes. Just like Frodo had Gandalf or Luke had Obi Wan
Or Robert Kiyosaki had his Rich Dad, who were your heroes?
Were they real life mentors? Were they speakers or authors?
Were they peers who were just a few years ahead of you?
And how important were they to what
You’ve accomplished so far in your business?
So another great question. This really, I go back to the
Expression that says, if it seems like I can see farther
Than those who came before me, it’s because
I stand on the shoulders of giants. Our legal profession,
at least in Central Florida, I think does a really good job
Being very helpful and supportive, and whatnot
For each other. So, I mean, for me, I’ve had
Two really great mentors that ran. One ran the trial team at UCF.
One ran the trial team at Barry, and they were
The first two that really helped me on the path to being
A real lawyer. And then we had a ton of local attorneys
That would come in to guest judge us, to coach us, etc.
And then even to this day, I always love talking to peers,
Mentors, mentees, I think you learn just as much from a
Six month to one year experienced attorney, as I can,
From a 25 to 30 year experience attorney just because
The legal profession, not only is changing so much,
But so much of it is reliant upon dealing with a normal person.
You’re dealing with a – at the end of the day,
You’re dealing with a jury. You’re not dealing with the judge
For a lot of the cases. So, I’m at where I’m now
As a business owner and a lawyer, really from the help
Of people who were way more experienced than me,
As experienced as me and much less-experienced,
Because all of us are people. We’re going to look
At a case differently. We’re going to look at facts differently.
We’re going to look at what matters to us more
Than it would to somebody else.
And so it’s it’s really, really, really a whole team aspect.
I’m sure everybody says that, but there’s no way
I’d be remotely where I was without hundreds of people
That have helped me get to where I am now.
That’s awesome. And I think particularly in an industry like yours,
Where the law is so complex and so deep,
You have to have people that have come before to help you
And show you what it’s like. And how to navigate it.
I don’t know, it just reminds me of the whole –
Apprentice and journeyman and master thing,
The legal profession almost still requires that you have to have
Mentors who help you sort of navigate the waters.
Well, and even more so than that. I mean you talk about
The Luke-Obi Wan relationship but a lot of it now is
The …-Han Solo relationship where we may get a case
That’s a 90% of personal injury case. But then 10% of tax case.
There’s some issue with this settlement. And so having
A colleague of ours that knows that part, helps our clients get
A giant win, as opposed to just a very good win.
Because it’s not something that we know about,
But we can bring in the right person to fix that one piece.
Someone who knows how to go through that
Pass and … or whatever.
There you go.
… Somebody knows how to do that. Cool.
So let’s bring it home for our listeners a little bit
And talk bout your guiding principles. What are the top one
Or two principles or actions you use regularly
That helped push your business forward? One or two things
Maybe you wish you knew when you
First started out on this hero’s journey?
Well, to keep going with the superpowers, the one thing I wish I had
Was some sort of like, telekinesis foresight type thing.
Like having a cerebro or whatnot would have been so helpful.
Because I think so many people get caught up in
Not knowing what they actually want. They don’t know
What the problem is? They don’t know who their ideal client is.
They don’t know what kind of stuff they want to practice.
And I think that’s the biggest guiding principle we have now
Is trying to figure out our ideal client.
So what does our ideal client look like? Where are they?
Who do they go to when they have problems,
And so from that, that tells us we need to be more
Marketing in these channels. We need to be meeting
These sorts of people that will be the right
Centers of influence for our ideal clients, etc.
And then the other thing that motivates us is to
Always do the right thing. There are at least when we can,
There are some times where I have to do the ethical thing,
Which I don’t think is necessarily the right thing.
But 99% of the time, you can do the right thing. And I think
A lot of people don’t and I think a lot of people take,
Especially other lawyers, they take such a short term view
On the case, the client, opposing counsel, whatever it is
That they do a disservice to their current client,
Because they’re cutting off their nose to spite their face.
So for us, we try to take a long term view as much as we can.
Do you think that’s made a big impact
In the growth of your practice?
Absolutely, I mean, I have state attorneys that refer us cases.
I have former opposing counsels that refer us cases.
It’s helpful there. And then also, we’ll help judges that are –
That used to be defense attorneys that we worked against,
And now they’re the judge on the case,
Or we’re working with them on their campaign for them
To get elected by working together.
And by having those relationships, I don’t want to say
That it makes the ruling any different. But I may get
A phone call return faster by a state attorney.
I may get a motion reviewed in judge’s chambers
A little bit faster. Some – it may not be to get a different ruling,
But it may be to get priority and being heard. And when
You have those moments where an emergency hits the fan,
It’s nice to be able to help a client as quickly as possible,
As well as best as possible.
That’s really interesting. And it’s amazing how just learning
How to do – not learning. But choosing to do the right thing
On a regular basis can have a positive impact
On your business like that, especially with someone –
Like what you do or the work you do for clients
So intimately impacts them. So that’s, it’s really cool
To see how that effected of your business. So the next thing
That I do on the show, we do this every time,
Is something I call the Hero’s Challenge.
Hero’s Challenge is pretty simple. It’s just, do you have someone
In your business network that you think
Has a cool entrepreneurial story. Who are they?
First names are fine and why do you think they should come
Share their journey on the HERO Show?
That’s a good one.
So it has to be somebody who’s entrepreneurial?
Well, that depends. Do you have someone who’s got a cool story
That we should that you think is a hero, otherwise?
I mean, I’m open. I’m game.
So I’m on the the Big Brother Big Sister Board for Central Florida.
And one of the guys on it, his name is Brian.
He works with Orlando Magic. He’s not a basketball player.
But he’s got a phenomenal story about –
He was a little himself in Big Brother Big Sister
And now he’s a Big and he’s on the board with us.
And he’s just a really cool guy with a great story to tell.
Obviously doesn’t own the Orlando Magic doesn’t run them.
But does some really cool stuff.
Absolutely. That’d be cool. Well, we’ll reach out afterwards.
Last thing that we do is, where can people find you?
So I know, I’ve heard you run podcast.
And so where can they find your podcast?
If they’re looking for legal help? I assume you have to be
Citizens of Florida, possibly. Who are your ideal clients?
And how can they reach out and find you?
So our podcast is called Let’s Get Up To Business
As opposed to Let’s Get Down To Business.
It’s going to be on iTunes, Stitcher, Last.FM.
Anywhere where they’ll allow you to post a podcast,
We try to be there. In terms of our ideal clients,
All of us are licensed in Florida, so they have to be in Florida.
Our ideal clients are going to be usually some business owner,
Somebody similar to me with a business of about 10 people
That’s growing that needs to make sure
They’re protected from a legal standpoint.
They’ve got all the right documents in place.
And then obviously, anybody injured in a car accident
Who’s been arrested, unfortunately.
Well, fortunately, or unfortunately, those clients
Can’t happen proactively, it has to happen reactively
After the situation’s already gone on.
So the best way to reach us is https://jordanlawfl.com/
That’s our website https://jordanlawfl.com/
Our phone number is 407-906-5529. That’s 407-906-5529.
You can also find us on Facebook, Jordan Law, FL.
And we post the most ridiculous legal stories
And we try to make some good puns.
So I think our Facebook is not what you expect
From the normal law firm. And I hope people take that as a positive.
That’s awesome. And that basically ends the show.
Thank you so much for coming on.
It’s been a really interesting conversation,
Despite our technical glitches here that we have with Zoom.
But thank you for coming on and sharing your story
And what it is that you’re doing. And of course,
If you’re listening to the show and
You do need legal help, particularly. My audience will probably
Mostly be business owners and you’re in Florida,
Reach out to Jordan and see if you can get all
Your legal ducks in a row. Again, Jordan,
Thank you for coming onto the show. Really appreciate it.
Thank you so much for having me.
I really love the organizing interview around it.
Being a superhero. It’s a very cool thing to do.
I really enjoyed that, as well. A lot of our guest does. Super cool.