Waking up to Law

Hello. My name is Jason and I am a lawyer. But enough about me. What is it that you want? I’m quite sure that your preference wouldn’t be to spend money on ‘legals’. Assuming you’re in business you want to make a profit. And so, you’ll be more inclined to spend time and money on your staff; systems and methods; and invest in marketing and advertising, all with the aim of improving your business, your presence, and ultimately your bottom line. I bet you don’t wake up in the morning, shouting to the world, “Eureka! Today I want to go out and buy me some legals!”

Being Realistic

Let’s be honest, just between you and me. If you thought you could run your business without, say a contract, you would. And even when someone else provided the contract, ideally you would both want it to guarantee the relationship, in such a way that each side was happy and content throughout the time you worked together, because you each received exactly what you both expected from it. But of course that’s a rather one dimensional view. Businesses will be affected at least by regulation and various specialist areas depending on their sector and focus, such as intellectual property. And in terms of growing, developing and improving your business, legal requirements will inevitably influence the characteristics of your business evolution. Therefore unless you have no need of lawyers or believe that you are all ‘lawyered-out’, it is inevitable that you will need to seek legal advice as your business matures. So, in the meantime, let’s come back to how the original question should still be relevant for you: what do you want from your lawyer? And if your preference is not to spend money on legals in the first place, this is the most important question you should be asking.

What are you looking for?

In my experience clients tend to have an inclination for wanting “a good lawyer”. The expectation of qualification and competency is perhaps a bare minimum, and to be fair all lawyers satisfy this standard in their own specific way. What many clients tend to look for in their lawyers is that ‘QWAN’ (Quality Without A Name).  They’ll either say to others that they “have a good lawyer”, or otherwise ask “does anyone know (of) a good lawyer?”. Therefore wanting a good lawyer is about understanding what being ‘good’ means for you.

What you are unlikely to want

This list could be longer, and can also very much depend on whether you have had a bad experience when dealing with advisors. A few examples may include:

Never around”: it can be immensely frustrating for a client not to be able to make initial contact with their advisor. More so when messages are left and there is no returning call…

Needing to chase”: waiting around for advice after an agreed time, or even needing to chase up to receive the advice is unnecessary stress for a client.

Not being advised”: this can have different meanings depending on the client and the nature of the enquiry. Simply receiving the black letter law can leave a client unsatisfied and wanting/needing more.

No empathy”: An advisor should care about their clients along with their ambitions and concerns. A client will sense that an uncaring advisor will likely be an ineffective business partner.

Desirable Qualities

A few examples of potential desirable qualities that you seek could include:

  1. Approachability: not just in terms of a personal touch and being able to get on with you and your colleagues, but having an understanding of your business, your challenges, as well as opportunities within your sector.
  2. Availability: and the comfort of knowing that your lawyer is always around when you want them even after a matter has concluded.
  3. Experience: not just in terms of a number of years of qualification (which speaks more to competency), but how effectively has a lawyer successfully concluded the particular matter you need support for.
  4. Efficiency: not just in terms of a swift turnaround for routine, non-complex matters, but being able to deal with challenging projects without causing further complication or headache for you.
  5. Going the extra mile: when you find yourself smiling because you benefitted from something else that you didn’t expect.
  6. Support: receiving an explanation of the law has its place, but you’ll more often want to receive clear, tangible and pragmatic advice to compliment your commercial outlook, that in turn can be effectively communicated to your teams enabling a definitive and actionable plan, which can simply give you the solution you want.
  7. Urgency: not just recognising that it is your timelines that are important and working with you to achieve those deadlines, but being up-to-date, pro-active, and keeping an eye on the horizon for you.
  8. What else: you may have an idea of something that you are specifically looking for, and perhaps there is something else out there that you would like to know about?


For you it may be beneficial to have access to a number of ‘good’ specialist lawyers across different law firms, or even being able to find a single law firm that employs the spread of good lawyers that you’re looking for. A client of mine once told the Legal500, “it’s not the law firm, it’s the lawyer”. I would only add that it can be the law firm, provided it has enough good lawyers, which it can also sufficiently support. In this way the firm can become a shining reflection of its clients via the mirror of its good lawyers. Is this not an aim for your business also? To have clients returning to you because you’re a good supplier, who employs other good colleagues, that delivers to your clients what they want.

This then brings me to collaboration which I believe is worthy of inclusion also. Indeed more often it is larger corporates that tend to evolve and influence the nature of their desired legal service providers, by requiring those potential firms to also demonstrate and uphold standards and ethics that the client itself embodies or otherwise aspires to. Evidence of greater workplace and leadership diversity are such examples. You too may well seek to define a good lawyer as one who shares your ethos (environmental, charitable, staff well-being) who wishes to partner you throughout the long-term, contributing to your highs and supporting you when most needed.

I appreciate that the 8 reasons above are not exhaustive, as after all, this is about you and not me. Nonetheless I do believe that this is a useful starting point for you should you be looking to engage with a particular lawyer or firm.

Jason Lysandrides



By phone 

D. 01242 323 548

By e-mail



“Jason is highly knowledgeable, and a genuine pleasure to work with. He clearly explained the legal nuances in plain English, and even provided helpful suggestions to the solicitors on the other side, which all parties felt had expedited the process. The result was that I felt the resulting contract was fair to both parties, and that my interests were of his utmost priority at all times. Highly recommended.”

Founder, Digital Retail & Technology