Your firm’s main phone line rings and you reach to pick it up. It’s force of habit. But if you’re a partner, it can lead to lower profits for your firm.

The difference between a thriving law firm and a law firm that fails can come down to one thing: efficiency. If you cling to old habits and fail to use more efficient methods of managing your practice, you risk sacrificing profits. Here are five common efficiency killers — and tips to help you become more productive.

1. Staffing and task assignment errors. Productivity problems arise when people step outside their scope of responsibilities. If a partner is sorting through the daily mail or answering unscreened phone calls, staffing is not being optimized and potential fees are being sacrificed. Many lawyers, particularly those in smaller offices, are accustomed to handling these types of functions. Tasks that don’t produce revenue, however, should be performed by a non-billable staff member. When you delegate properly, you can focus on fee-producing work or client development activities. Likewise, lawyers with specializations or higher billing rates should be brought in only when the client’s needs justify using those resources.

Read the full blog post & see the other 4 efficiency killers at