01 September 2021

Four reasons why disruptive companies need disruptive lawyers: Alternative legal service providers

Alternative Legal Service Provider (ALSP)

why does legal design suit disruptive companies?



At Lawbox Design we are continuously trying to improve. We know that we aren’t perfect (yes, a legal provider did just say that) and we know that the way to improve this, an idea central to legal design, is to empathize with our clients. We regularly try and step back to reflect on some of the shared characteristics of our clients and to think about what they need and what they teach us to enable our future development and improvement.

We have many clients who are disruptors and challenge the traditional methods of doing business. A number of these clients have said to us that the reason they chose Lawbox Design was that they want a firm that is doing things differently too. WIn fact, we pride ourselves as being alternative legal service providers for this very reason. That got us to thinking, do disruptive companies need disruptive lawyers?

what is a disruptive company?

As we mentioned above, a disruptive company is one that challenges the traditional, old ways of doing something. Being a disruptive company means that you have come to market with a non-conventional business model to solve the problem or need those customers have.

A study by KPMG in 2019 asked tech industry leaders to name the companies that they saw as being the most disruptive. Some household names came up: Amazon, Apple, Airbnb. These companies have all grown exponentially because they all understood and delivered to their customers in a way that the incumbent market leader didn’t.

Not all disruptive companies are household names (yet) but there is a reason many are. Now, the more pedantic among you might say that to be a true disruptor they need to have knocked the existing leader off the top spot (hence why they are well-known). But…that is not what we are getting at here. What disruptors do is give people what they want, and they aren’t afraid to innovate to get there. They are new and fresh.

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what are some of the traits of a disruptive company?

Thinking about our clients we would say:

  • Entrepreneurial
  • Customer obsessed
  • Problem solvers
  • Innovative
  • Not afraid to challenge
  • Not afraid to fail and try again

four reasons why a disruptive company needs a disruptive lawyer.

So, why might a disruptive company want a disruptive lawyer or alternative legal service provider? Let’s take the traits that we have identified as a starting point to understand the four key reasons why a disruptive company might benefit from having an ALSP who does things differently.

1. pioneering the way we do business.

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Disruptors tend to be entrepreneurial. They have a clear business goal and a passion. Both of those things can get lost with traditional law firms. What we have done at Lawbox Design to make sure that we keep sight of our client’s business goals and driving passions is to use a project manager to onboard all our clients. As an ALSP we get to the heart of what our client’s business is trying to achieve and make sure that any solution that we provide matches and supports that objective. It’s right at the top of each clientBox.

2. end-user focused.

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Alongside being entrepreneurial, it goes without saying that disruptive companies are also customer-obsessed. We have spoken a lot on the soapbox about how legal design helps users of legal have a better experience (LuX). To deliver LuX we need to be obsessed with our client’s customers too. If we can understand what you are trying to achieve with your customers, we can help you deliver better experiences to them. We want to hear the reaction you get from your customers when they receive a legally designed set of terms, we want to hear the reaction from your employees when they receive a legally designed employment contract. Those reactions help us to evolve with you.

3. rethinking the traditional.

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Other qualities of a disruptive company include innovation and problem solving – both of which mean rethinking the ‘how’. It means not being bound by what has gone before – the traditional -and starting with a clean sheet of paper. This is where being an alternative legal service provider, focused on legal design takes on a life of its own. Going through the different stages of legal design challenges our clients to think differently. As a result, we co-create solutions that work better for all the stakeholders involved.

4. challenging the ‘norm’.

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Finally, disruptive companies are not afraid to challenge. We started this piece by saying that we aren’t perfect, and we enjoy clients who challenge us. As an alternative legal service provider, we want clients who question why something needs to be the way it is, and we value clients that push us to deliver more. We want to offer the same back to disruptive companies – we offer clients (and non-clients) a free 30-minute call to discuss the disruptive plans for your business, whether you are a start-up or have just hit the wall in terms of the next steps. We know the value of lending an ear to listen and hopefully in giving you our time we can inspire you to deliver more to your customers.

join the Box.

In the spirit of innovation and moving away from the traditional, we also provide a forum for challenge and for businesses to explore their business ideas and processes with a diverse range of people. If you want to join and share ideas in a confidential forum, then join our businessBox.

so, what have we learned working with disruptive companies?

The disruptive companies we work with challenge us every day to up our game as an ALSP. Disruption usually comes with passion but it is hard. The path isn’t paved for you, at times people don’t get it, which is why we think we disruptors should stick together. We know and believe that disruption can be good for customers and good for the industries which are disrupted.

There is a danger that exists with disruptors of course…that the disruptive then become disrupted. They get caught in the trap that befell the companies and industries they challenged. The trap? Complacency and failing to listen and evolve. That is the biggest lesson that our disruptive clients teach us. Keep asking and keep listening.

For more on some of our disruptive clients click here.

If you’d like to take us up on our offer of a free 30 minute chat to see how we can help your disruptive company on it’s journey then please get in touch at onwards@lawboxdesign.com.

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