6 Ways to Save (or Start) Your Senior Thesis

When you’re in the middle of research for your senior thesis, you know your topic so well that figuring out where to start when discussing it feels impossible. You’ve spent months or years exploring a topic to the point you can write and talk about it for hours. But a thesis that reads like an over-eager, disjointed monologue does not interest a reader or help her understand (and love) your topic. Letting the ideas tumble out of your head and onto paper without culling and organizing information will create more work for you—something no one wants, especially with tight deadlines.

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To Innovate In Law, We Need Analysis, Not Hype

Despite the calls to innovate and excitement stemming from conferences, hack-a-thons, think-pieces, and podcasts, law firms aren’t actually innovating. As lawyers, we know that we need to change, but figuring out how and where to start is daunting. Frankly, we’re stuck. And we’re not helped by the hype and assertions that one single idea or one single piece of technology will be the panacea for our problems. The truth is that no one change or decision will be the right fit for every law firm or law department. Instead, what we need is a framework to determine the best direction for our individual circumstances. Workflow analysis can help.

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Rise Up And Innovate: A Manifesto For Lawyers

Too many lawyers with great ideas that could improve legal practice are discouraged from even trying to innovate. As lawyers, we assume that innovation must mean invention, technology, and programming. By accepting that assumption, we are accepting the belief that innovation is something that other people do. But that’s not true. Innovation can be any new process or new way of thinking — and that can be game changing. Innovating is for lawyers, and lawyers already have the skills to be innovators. No coding necessary.

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The Perfect Brief Part 12 - The Brief Brief List

For our final installment on The Perfect Brief, we offer a list you can quickly peruse to ensure you have checked all of the elements in your brief to make it the most convincing document you can put before a judge.

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Changing Attitudes to Technology Starts with Incentives

Technologists seem mystified that lawyers don’t embrace efficiency-enhancing innovations. Despite our reluctance to face it, as lawyers, we need look no further than our rewards structure to see why. Billable hours reward inefficiency. And that rewards structure has remained in place with the help of ethical fading. We think that we’re simply using the existing business model for our benefit. We use our history and familiarity with the billable hour framework to ignore that our goals and our clients’ goals are at cross-purposes.

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The Perfect Brief Part 11 - Polishing Your Brief

A polished document encourages a generous reading, so review to correct mistakes, shorten the brief, and generally make the judge’s job easier. Below are several ideas to ensure that what we send to the court is our best work and enhances our reputation with the judge.

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Why Better Technology Implementation Isn’t About the Tech

One mistake, possibly more than any other, is the reason behind so many failed legal technology purchases. And law firm management and software vendors are equally to blame: they both treat the purchasing decision as the end goal. The result is a landscape littered with failed technology and innovation initiatives that is bad for management and vendors alike.

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The Perfect Brief Part 10 - The 10 Myths of Brief Writing

Over centuries, these false notions have grown to dominate a litigation practice and stuff our briefs with the results of unsavory habits. We aim to dispel them, so you can deliver to the court your most persuasive brief.

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5 Tips to Tackle Inbox Overload

Whether you just returned from a two-week vacation or a two-day weekend, you probably logged on to your laptop to find a full inbox. Responding to email – and generating email for our own projects – consumes much of our workdays; we spend more than a quarter of our workweeks on email. If you’re overwhelmed by your inbox or just frustrated it’s preventing you from getting to other tasks, try these five strategies to clarify your emails and spend less time in your inbox.

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How the Tech We Get Holds Back the Tech We Need

It’s been nearly ten years since the financial crisis of 2008, yet the legal industry is still reeling from it. Lawyers felt the shift from seller’s market to buyer’s market, but we weren’t sure that it would be permanent and didn’t know how to respond. For technology enthusiasts, the answer seemed obvious: use more legal technology. That may be part of the solution (and I genuinely believe it is). However, the way technologists promote their tools is self-defeating. Early adopters encourage them, and together they create an echo chamber that is unattractive and unappealing to the vast majority of our profession.

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Our Story

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WordRake founder Gary Kinder has taught over 1,000 writing programs for AMLAW 100 firms, Fortune 500 companies, and government agencies. He’s also a New York Times bestselling author. As a writing expert and coach, Gary was inspired to create WordRake when he noticed a pattern in writing errors that he thought he could address with technology.

In 2012, Gary and his team of engineers created WordRake editing software to help writers produce clear, concise, and effective prose. It runs in Microsoft Word and Outlook, and its suggested changes appear in the familiar track-changes style. It saves time and gives confidence. Writing and editing has never been easier.