Tracey Mylecharane Director of Tracey Mylecharane Solicitor manages a virtual legal practice, providing legal advice to individual and business clients nationwide. Also a guest lecturer at ANU and UNSW, Tracey has recently launched a new course, Getting Paid Made Easy for service businesses taking their offerings online.
Getting Paid Made Easy is for small business owners, and focuses on helping them to get the necessary legal documents and systems in place to ensure quick and hassle free payments.
Why is it important to understand the culture of the business when you are giving legal advice?
I always start with the end in mind when working through an issue with a client. Part of that means I need to understand the culture of the client’s business because that helps to frame the strategy and approach we develop.
Without understanding the nature of the client’s business, and its culture, it’s a little bit like flying blind.
As businesses are growing, what should be the catalyst for updating their legal documents and what is often missed when businesses are going through growing pains?
I am a firm believer that businesses should review and update their legal documents at least annually. I provide that guideline because, during times of growth, legal documents are often the last thing on a business owner’s mind!
Things change over time, and that’s a good thing. Business owners are often so focused on being ‘in’ the business, and doing all the things, that they don’t think to take the time to have their legal documents reviewed.
The catalyst in my mind is when offerings change (whether goods or services), when the team grows (either by way of contractors or employees) or when the business structure changes.
how do you ensure clients peace of mind in their business?
I collaborate with my clients to educate and empower them. This is key to peace of mind. If we are developing legal documents, for example, I explain these to the client and teach them how to use them and implement them into their business. If I am providing strategic advice or if we are solving a problem, we work through the issues together, and I explain the basis for my advice.
I am a part of my client’s team. Working with me is rarely a one-off. Clients can reach out to me to ask questions or bounce ideas, and I have the benefit of understanding the business which means ongoing advice is efficient, effective and practical.
How has listening to customers driven innovation in your business?
Practicing law is different today than what it was 20 years ago. Clients are very clear with what they want, and that’s a good thing! Clients don’t come to me because they want to be lectured on the law, or because they want a lesson in governance or procedure. Clients come to me because they want to collaborate with a lawyer who has skills and expertise in both law and business, and because they want to understand what they need to do; understand why they need to do it; and they want to be part of the journey. They don’t want to be dictated to or judged. I have listened to clients over the past 18 years, and I continue to listen. Clients’ needs change over time, and my business model has been designed to allow me to be adaptive and responsive to client needs.
My business model is virtual, which means I act for clients all over the country. Clients want accessibility and they need it to be easy for them. That’s exactly what I provide. Gone are the days where getting time with your lawyer is a big deal, and gone are the days where travel and face-to-face meetings are necessary. I provide the same quality services to my clients, in an accessible way, which to be honest, is more efficient and effective than it was when I was working in an office, managing a face-to-face team and juggling the logistics and politics that came with it.
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