After a five-year stint at two mid-tiers, a young professional has established a new firm, which he says fills an important gap in the legal market.
Law Squared was founded by Demetrio Zema, who hopes to offer Millennials, entrepreneurs and SMEs a better client experience.
“While I am undoubtedly appreciative of the experience I gained during my time in the traditional world of the law, I recognised that in times that are dominated by Millennial clients and controlled by technology, the legal industry was, and remains, frozen in time,” Mr Zema said to sister publication Lawyers Weekly.
“In a world where email and instant messaging is a key aspect of one’s day-to-day life, law firms lamentably remain ‘stuck’ in the traditional mechanics of client engagement. Indeed, the reality is that a traditional law firm, with its dictaphones, typists and word processing tools, sits awkwardly in today’s modern world of fintech and Millennial businesses, who want and need their lawyers to be present, adaptable, relevant and, of course, personable.
“Ergo, my decision to establish Law Squared earlier this year, a firm which I hope will offer to Millennials, entrepreneurs [and] SMEs services that traditional firms are, simply by their very nature, unable to offer.”
Mr Zema completed a double degree in international relations/law at La Trobe University and has been involved in start-up businesses from an early age. He said this experience influenced his decision to launch a new firm that aims to meet the evolving needs of clients.
“Having been involved in starting up businesses and taking a very hands-on approach to my legal work throughout my career, I quickly realised that I like having a high level of responsibility, which I was denied in the traditional world of the law,” he said.
“Further, through my involvement in the entrepreneur scene from my very early 20s I came to the realisation that there was a gap in the legal market with respect to the provision of legal services to entrepreneurs.
“I thought to myself, maybe I, by blending my entrepreneur and legal skills, could perhaps fill this gap by creating a law firm dedicated to assisting entrepreneurs and changing the way in which entrepreneurs and businesses engage with lawyers.”
Mr Zema said Law Squared's offering is different to that of other firms.
“Sure, there are a number of 'new-gen' law firms and 'law tech' platforms; however, while the former type generally don’t span beyond one or two people, the latter type offers a vastly different service to the service which we at Law Squared offer,” he said.
“Further, through conversations with friends working in traditional firms, I was acutely aware of the job dissatisfaction epidemic affecting many young lawyers. I was motivated, therefore, to create a firm that could not only offer a holistic service to budding and established entrepreneurs, but also a firm that could offer a nurturing environment to young lawyers.”
Looking ahead, Mr Zema said the biggest goals for Law Squared over the next 12 months are further growth and maintaining a distinct point of difference over other firms in the Australian legal market.
“Though we may be under one year [old], we are in an exponential growth stage, such that our firm is now employer to nine people and we are set to increase by another three team members by end of November 2016,” he said.
“Our growth and exponential expansion is a testament to our clients’ trust in us and our service delivery model. We do not engage in any advertising of our services. Our clients come to us, generally, through word of mouth and indeed some of our clients have opted to disentangle themselves from the likes of traditional firms in favour of our firm. This is suggestive of our ethos and our values, which are unlike those of any other law firm.
“Our firm is the antithesis of a traditional firm. It’s a happy environment. It’s a collaborative and inviting firm. It’s a firm home to lawyers who are relatable, understanding, accessible and responsive.
“Driven by outcome and success, our firm is for serial entrepreneurs and SME business directors looking for a law firm in which they can trust. Indeed, the firm was founded to provide a better client experience. While we are certain in our resolve to provide a more authentic way for clients to engage with lawyers, we seek to achieve our objective not through traditional means but by working closely as part of our clients’ teams, providing strategic advice to them and proactively managing their daily legal requirements.”