SoloCorps Harnesses the Force of Storytelling + Video to Help Solo and Small Firm Lawyers

The Power of Storytelling

A guest post by Lisa Solomon

When Facebook reached 500 million users this week, it launched Facebook Stories, an application that enables Facebook users to share their stories about how the social networking site has impacted their lives. For readers, the stories are categorized by theme and location.

While reaching the 500 million-user milestone is the purported impetus for the launch of Facebook Stories, there’s a strategic motivation as well: relatable human stories help take the focus off of Facebook’s recent user privacy gaffes and its dismal showing in a new customer satisfaction survey. Storytelling is a powerful persuasive tool.

The Impact of Video

When the 7th Circuit Bar Association decided it wanted to give its members the inside scoop on 7th Circuit practice, it turned to video. Through its recently-launched eMentoring program, the Association will be posting video interviews with all 7th Circuit district and magistrate judges, as well as prominent practitioners, providing advice on local practice. Capturing this advice on video helps make the judges and lawyers who are being interviewed more concrete and human than can be achieved by recording their words on a page.

SoloCorps: Mentoring through Storytelling

As lawyers, we’re all constantly telling stories, whether we’re making an impassioned closing argument before a jury or just swapping war stories over drinks after work. And, as longtime members of Solosez, Carolyn and I have witnessed, time and again, experienced lawyers helping newer ones by sharing stories of what they’ve been through over the years. (In fact, Solsez and NPR’s StoryCorps are the twin inspirations for SoloCorps.) By combining lawyers’ natural affinity for storytelling with the immediacy of online video, SoloCorps will offer a unique resource for the solo and small firm community.

Be A Part of it

As Carolyn mentioned in her post introducing SoloCorps, we’ll be officially launching the project on a whirlwind tour of the midwest from August 1 (when we touch down in Minneapolis, en route to the Minnesota Strategic Solutions for Solos & Small Firms Conference in Duluth) to August 6 (when Carolyn presents the closing plenary session at the Nebraska Solo & Small Firm Conference). During the tour, we’ll be conducting live interviews at each stop (and even in between: one interview will take place in the car on our drive back from Duluth to Minneapolis) and posting them online as we go. You can view available interview slots, and schedule an interview, at our SolosintheHeartland Tungle calendar (scroll forward to the week of August 1-7).

Upcoming live tour stops later in the year include the Pennsylvania Law Practice Management and Development Institute: Strategic Solutions for Solo to Mid-Size Firms conference in Lancaster on August 19 and 20 and the Michigan State Bar Association 7th Annual Solo & Small Firm Institute in Grand Rapids September 29 through October 1.

Not in Minnesota, Iowa, Nebraska, Pennsylvania or Michigan? No problem: we’ll soon be launching a SoloCorps video site, through which you’ll be able to upload your own video 24/7.

In the meantime, the hashtag to follow the Solos in the Heartland Tour on Twitter is #SoloHeart. You can also keep track of us via the ABA Journal’s Rebels in the Heartland page (where you’ll also be able to view exclusive behind-the-scenes tour video).

Freelance Lawyer Lisa SolomonLisa Solomon is a freelance lawyer based in Ardsley, New York. Through Lisa Solomon, Esq. Legal Research & Writing, she assists attorneys with all their legal research and writing needs; through Legal Research & Writing Pro, she shows other lawyers how to start and run successful practices as freelance attorneys and teaches lawyers in all practice areas how to write more persuasive briefs.

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