Ryan Kimler: Numbers for Lawyers

In this episode, Steve Fretzin and Ryan Kimler discuss:

  • The numbers side of your law firm practice.
  • The KPIs firms should be looking into.
  • Why you need to understand your firm’s numbers.
  • Utilizing an expert to look at your numbers to set your firm up for success.

Key Takeaways:

  • A lot of built in reports in financial software are for compliance, not for understanding what is happening with your firm’s numbers.
  • Five of the simple numbers you should be tracking regularly: revenue, cost of goods sold, and operating expenses (marketing, payroll, other overhead).
  • Getting a numbers assessment will give you a starting place to understand what your firm needs.
  • You didn’t go to law school to understand the numbers of your firm, working with a financial expert can help you to understand where you are at and where you are going.

“The rule of thirds absolutely still holds true today, which is, when you hire an attorney 1/3 of the revenue that are going to generate goes to pay them, 1/3 to overhead, and 1/3 to profit.” —  Ryan Kimler

Connect with Ryan Kimler:  

Website: https://netprofitcfo.com/

Email: [email protected]

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ryankfinancialclarityllc/

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Connect with Steve Fretzin:

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Email: [email protected]

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Show notes by Podcastologist Chelsea Taylor-Sturkie

Audio production by Turnkey Podcast Productions. You’re the expert. Your podcast will prove it.

FULL TRANSCRIPT

 

SUMMARY KEYWORDS

numbers, business, attorney, law firm, lawyer, ryan, people, overhead, profit, firm, bookkeeper, cfo, absolutely, changing, clients, call, realize, marketing, listening, stay

SPEAKERS

Stephanie Vaughn Jones, Narrator, Jordan Ostroff, Steve Fretzin, Ryan Kimler

 

Ryan Kimler  [00:00]

And the rule you’re referring to as the rule of thirds, and it absolutely still holds true today, which is, you know, when you hire an attorney 1/3 You know, so if you’re gonna, if you’re gonna pay them, let’s just say you’re gonna pay him 100,000 They should be bringing in, you know, 300,000 of that right, so 1/3 of the revenue that are going to generate those to pay them 1/3 To overhead 1/3 To profit.

 

Narrator  [00:26]

You’re listening to be that lawyer, life changing strategies and resources for growing a successful law practice. Each episode, your host, author and lawyer coach, Steve Fretzin, will take a deeper dive, helping you grow your law practice in less time with greater results. Now, here’s your host, Steve Fretzin.

 

Steve Fretzin  [00:48]

Hey, everybody, welcome to be that lawyer. I am Steve Fretzin. I am happy that you’re with us. We, we hope that you’re listening on a regular basis. If you have, you know, want to go back and listen to 180 episodes or whatever I’ve done, feel free to go back and just kind of read the titles figure out like, is there a really good one on SEO? Is there really one good one on time management, I mean, all the titles should kind of give you information about who the guest is. And you know, that might incite you to like want to like I always do that, like I’ll listen to Joe Rogan. And I’ll check out like who the guests are always got a comedian. I know that sounds like fun, versus someone who’s going to talk politics where I might not feel like that at the moment or whatever. So go in and check it out. If you liked the show, tell your lawyer friends. And don’t forget to give us a good review on Apple, and whatever you know, device or computer you’re listening on. Listen, as you know, this show is all about being that lawyer someone who’s competent organized a skilled Rainmaker. Fretzin helps in two ways. We open a lot of ways. But the two ways that I get paid for primarily, number one is if you’re highly ambitious and interested in growing your law, practice, whether you do no business half 1,000,002 million doesn’t matter. We meet for 30 minutes, we talk about your practice, I try to identify your gaps, and where you could be doing things better. And if it’s something where I think I can help you and we agree, we keep talking. If not, I’ll send your way. And I’ll be very friendly about it in the nicest way, I’ll maybe send you to another coach friend of mine, or just give you some advice on the spot. And we’ll park friends and we’ll stay in touch and all that jazz. Also, if you’re interested in collaborating with other attorneys, remember I’ve got the rainmakers roundtables in the business developers roundtables. And that’s a great way to stay accountable. And to have a group of attorneys at your back, working together as a team to help you drive your practice forward. And share resources, share ideas, share what’s working, it’s a great way to build your practice and stay consistent with your performance. Well, that was a lot about me and my stuff. I want to get to Ryan in a second. Of course, I got to thank the sponsors. They’re running the show at this point. So money, Penny helping me with my live chat on my website. And of course, they also help you as a lawyer with your virtual reception. You need a receptionist that’s going to answer calls 24/7. They’re, they’re the best game in town. And of course, legalese marketing, who helps with marketing, newsletters, law Maddix, websites, and everything else, and they’re a big part of my success and driving my marketing. So hopefully, you guys can take a look at the legalese marketing, and they might be a good fit for you. All right, I’m exhausted from that, Ryan. That was just just to in that opening, took it out, it took it all out of me. First of all, Ryan Kibler, welcome to the show. I’m gonna make a more formal introduction, but your quote of the show is, Simon Sinek, quote, leadership is not about being in charge. Leadership is about taking care of those in your charge. That’s kind of deep. Thanks for sharing that. And welcome to the show. It is.

 

Ryan Kimler  [03:39]

Thank you. Thank you happy to be here. Yeah.

 

Steve Fretzin  [03:41]

So tell me why you submitted that quote, that’s an interesting one.

 

Ryan Kimler  [03:45]

So I followed that Simon Sinek for a while, I really liked the stuff that he says, and you know, I’m really passionate about, you know, what I do as well and understand that there’s a great responsibility that goes along with, you know, being a leader. And it requires always constantly improving and getting better. And, yeah, I just, I love that, quote. It’s more about, you know, just being in charge. It’s about taking care of people.

 

Steve Fretzin  [04:12]

Yeah, and I think the days of the tyrant, you know, managing partner of a law firm running around screaming at everybody and being a hole is, you know, I’m sure that still exists. And there are people that work for those people, but I don’t know how much longer they’re gonna hang out. I mean, culture is culture is King these days. And people want to feel like they’re a part of something special. And people want to feel like they’re, like they’re accomplishing something in their career and that they’re, they’re, you know, again, they’re, they’re backed up and supported properly. So I think that that quote really sort of embodies what’s happening right now in the in the legal space and, you know, in business all over, but in the legal space in particular. Absolutely. Yeah. Ryan Kibler, founder of net profit CFO, and also by the way a fellow Redbird, Illinois State Redbird

 

Ryan Kimler  [04:57]

just like me, man, as well. Lily absolutely really enjoyed my time there beautiful campus, right? Yes, it is wonderful.

 

Steve Fretzin  [05:05]

Garcia’s pizza that’s still around. That’s still a thing. Is that there when you were there, Garcia’s pit

 

Ryan Kimler  [05:11]

was it was not not that Oh,

 

Steve Fretzin  [05:15]

okay. Anyone over 40 probably remembers Garcia’s pizza. But it was this little square pizza. It was like a buck and a half or two bucks in the day and it was not good, but I ate it anyway, I thought it was great at the time. And so you’re down or you’re down near St. Louis, right?

 

Ryan Kimler  [05:30]

I am. Yeah. Today I live in St. Louis, Missouri or Well, suburb of there Wentzville, Missouri. And I really love it. I really, really love the move love the area, you know, helps that I’m a Cardinals fan too. So it doesn’t hurt every now and then.

 

Steve Fretzin  [05:44]

It doesn’t hurt. Yeah, big cubs Cardinals rivalry. And unfortunately, I’m totally out of sports. Like if you asked me to name three cubs players, I could probably tell you one, I could tell you know, maybe who their manager is like, I’m really bad. Like, I’m just not, I’m not doing it. But I’m playing sports. So that’s good. I’m staying active. Um, so tell me your background, because you’re not a lawyer. And I think you got pulled into legal maybe in a similar way that I did, like you found a need and a necessity in the industry that that you just kind of fit well, to talk about that.

 

Ryan Kimler  [06:15]

Totally. Yes. So as you mentioned, I mean, I went to Illinois State, you know, I have a background in accounting and finance, you know, double major there. And, you know, got out of school and started working for another CPA firm. And a lot of our clients were attorneys. And, you know, we were just doing basic, you know, bookkeeping and general ledger accounting, and it didn’t take me long to realize that, you know, what, we were given the eternities. I mean, definitely, services needed, right. I mean, it’s compliance based and, and you gotta have it gotta, you know, get your, get your taxes filed, and things like that, and stay on the IRS as good side, right. Yeah, but, but definitely, it didn’t take me long to figure out that, you know, attorneys really needed more. And, you know, that was really, you know, sparked a passion in me. And it really, it really made me feel like we were, you know, kind of under serving them as accountants, you know, they, I realized that they needed more insights, to really run their business and have the important numbers that they need. And yeah, just really felt like we were under serving them a little bit felt like they had been underserved by the accounting and finance community, just based on what I had seen and what I’d experienced from the clients that were coming to us.

 

Steve Fretzin  [07:28]

Yeah, I was I was surprised, Ryan, that, especially solos and small, firm attorneys, that they’re doing their own books, they’re doing their own bookkeeping and their own, of its accounting, but they’re, they’re they’re kind of like, you know, using outdated software, like they’re just that’s not their jam. And yet, they’re feeling like they have to do that. And it’s always, I’ve always scratched my head, but like, what are what are kind of the things that lawyers shouldn’t be doing that they’re doing? Or what why do they struggle with the business side of the, the bookkeeping, and just kind of the the number side of of the of the practice?

 

Ryan Kimler  [08:02]

Yeah, so those are definitely a few right there. Right, that definitely shouldn’t be doing right. And when I was

 

Steve Fretzin  [08:07]

leaving, I was leading the witness a little there. Yeah.

 

Ryan Kimler  [08:11]

But, I mean, what it really comes down to is it’s just not their expertise, right. I mean, and not what they’re good at it. Yeah. Not in not in their wheelhouse. And I think for a lot of attorneys, it’s actually the quite the opposite, that it’s really a draining activity. You know, and for me, I’m, you know, I’m complete opposite. I could be in numbers all day. Right. But if you shifted me over, I was like, Ryan, you know, read this code on the law. Right. And you got to go represent a court case, I would do terrible, right? Yeah. Yeah. And so it’s not in my wheelhouse. And so that’s one of the things for sure, is just just the financial management part of it. And, and, you know, and I think it starts, you know, they don’t teach it law school, you know, how to, how to run a business, how to do accounting, those kinds of things.

 

Steve Fretzin  [08:54]

That should be like, at least an L three, I mean, I know they have practice, may some of the law schools have practice management classes and stuff where maybe they go through some basics, or just kind of give an overview. But I mean, that should be that should be a part of it. Like, you know, here’s the basic numbers, the basic, you know, how the business works, here’s what you need to run a solo peak, not for everybody, maybe it’s an optional course, like if you think you’re gonna go off on your own, or you think you might have trouble getting a job, but I don’t know that that information to your point is, is yeah, it’s not in their wheelhouse. And I think generally business development, running the business management, those aren’t necessarily things that their lawyers are always good. I think they’re, they’re better at problem solving and the analytical side and, you know, and just, you know, arguing, right, these are these are things that don’t necessarily help with the, with the business end.

 

Ryan Kimler  [09:43]

Yeah, I agree. And, you know, to make to make matters worse, you know, most of the reports that were built, you know, that you get out of your typical accounting software is your profit and losses and your balance sheets and those sorts of things are really built for compliance. They’re not built for You know, to give insights to business owners and, you know, help them really have a growing and more profitable business. Instead, they’re built for the IRS and taxes and compliance. And so, you know, you kind of add bad to worse, you know, kind of a deal and it just calm it just compounds, you know.

 

Steve Fretzin  [10:17]

Yeah. And it’s interesting, even even some of the mid market firms when they have people get under the hood and look at the numbers. And they realize like, hey, you know, what you think is a profitable business isn’t or what you think is a functioning firm is not sustainable. And I’ve had a number of my managing partners kind of have that realization placed in front of them by, you know, a numbers person, and they’re just taken aback, they didn’t realize it was as bad as it was, they just, they just didn’t, you know, they just weren’t, they weren’t looking deep enough at the numbers.

 

Ryan Kimler  [10:52]

Yeah, absolutely, totally. I’ve seen that happen. And there’s, yeah, there’s a lot of things that happen, first of all, you know, between revenue and profit, and then there’s a lot more activities that happen between profit and ending net cash flow, you know,

 

Steve Fretzin  [11:05]

what are your profit looks great, but that are now like, gross looks great. But profit may not look great, or the amount of AR you’re holding, you may not realize it’s just sitting out there, like a big meatball. What are some of the main KPIs key performance indicators that law firms should be tracking, looking into, as a way to understand the numbers and handle them in a way that’s going to get them to scan a trouble or to be successful?

 

Ryan Kimler  [11:34]

Sure, absolutely. So I have really tried to cut this down as far as possible. So that, you know, people can really take this information and go look at the numbers themselves and not have to dive in too deep. So I have nine simple numbers that you really should be looking at, you know, really on a monthly basis. First one’s revenue, right, which I’m sure most all your listeners, probably our second one would be like cost of goods sold. Now, cost of goods sold is really interesting. A lot of people think cost of goods sold and they’re thinking inventory, right? They’re thinking like, it’s a product, you buy a product around sell it, that’s your cost of goods sold. But actually, in a law firm. If you’re doing like Pay Per Click advertising, I would put that in cost of goods sold, it’s it’s a direct cost to your law firm to get your next case is that pay per click advertising. If you’re using outside attorneys to fulfill on cases or outside counsel, and you’re bringing them in as contractors, I would put those in cost of goods sold as well, it’s a direct cost that’s going to a case, before you get into you know that money’s not going to go to pay overhead. Right. So Cost of Goods Sold isn’t really important number to look at and make sure that you have the right things in cost of goods sold. And then overall operating expenses, I’d like to break down into three categories. Your first one is your marketing expenses. The second one would be all of your payroll expenses, these are all the people that are not on contract or not in cost of goods sold. And then and that includes yourself too as an owner if you’re on payroll. And then the third one is just all other overhead, your office, your computers, all those kinds of things. And you want to look at those three numbers as a percentage of revenue. So that covers five of the numbers. And those all come from your profit and loss statement. And those are things that you know, as an attorney, you should be looking out on a monthly basis. And your bookkeeper should be able to put those numbers together for you probably,

 

Steve Fretzin  [13:23]

if the bookkeeper can put them together for you, should you be concerned about that? bookkeeper? Yeah, you

 

Ryan Kimler  [13:28]

probably should. Yeah,

 

Steve Fretzin  [13:30]

I mean, my bookkeeper is awesome. She sends me every month, the balance sheet, the profit and loss, the AR, which is like nothing, and she sends me like how much like revenue is coming in 2022 2023, that’s all broken down by client, like, it’s all the numbers that I need to like, I think, make good decisions, and know like, what my cash flow is going to be, and what my overhead is, you know, what I have to cover each month, and you know, and then I’ve set goals. So I think you have to have a baseline of having a good bookkeeper that can that can get the numbers in the right spots, and and make sure that the numbers make sense. If you can’t even make sense of the numbers. You know, that’s not going to be a great situation, or maybe around call you, Ryan. Absolutely.

 

Ryan Kimler  [14:17]

Yeah. And consistency is really key there. You know, you want to make sure that all the categories are staying consistent. And, you know, obviously, with law firms, they’ve got to account for trust funds, and usually advanced client costs, which are things that are not typical of other businesses, right. So that’s very niche based. And so I know that it can be a challenge out there for attorneys to find great bookkeepers to keep up their stuff. But yeah, I mean, so that’d be you know, those those five numbers off your profit and loss, then I’ve got four that come off the balance sheet. One of them, as you mentioned, is changing AR Because that has a direct effect on cashflow. Then change in any other assets that you have. For most law firms. That’s probably not going to be too much Maybe you go out and buy like 10 computers for your office or something like that, right? That’s booked as an asset to the firm. Or if you go actually buy a building or something like that, that the real extreme, and then change in debt. Right? If you’ve taken on, you know, I know people have taken on, a lot of firms have probably taken on COVID, loans TPP, all those kinds of things you’re gonna find in your debt category. And then the last one is just your changes in equity or your owner’s drawls owner’s contributions, those four numbers off your balance sheet are really going to drive your cash flow. And so those four are really key to keep an eye on month over month and know what they’re doing.

 

Jordan Ostroff  [15:37]

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Steve Fretzin  [15:59]

Hey Steph, tell everyone what Moneypenny does for law firms

 

Stephanie Vaughn Jones  [16:03]

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Steve Fretzin  [16:17]

I did not know that. That’s a lot of business going away right there. Let’s cut to the chase. What are you prepared to do for my listeners?

 

Stephanie Vaughn Jones  [16:23]

We’re offering an exclusive two week free trial. If you’re interested in hearing more, you can call me directly on 470-534-8846. I mentioned that you’ve heard this ad on Steve’s podcast.

 

Steve Fretzin  [16:37]

Very cool, thanks. Let me ask you a question back in the day, i i And I’m gonna totally screw this up and then be mad at myself for bringing it up in the first place. But like, there was like an, like, when I was doing like small businesses, and I was in the franchise space. And there was like a, like a 3030 30 rule that made it really kind of simple, like 30% was overhead, like 30% was or like 30% was was material costs. 30% was overhead, and then the 30% was profit, including salaries, there was like some, like generalization Do you find that there’s anything lawyers can kind of count on as far as generalizations and their numbers? That makes sense?

 

Ryan Kimler  [17:17]

Yep, absolutely. So I get asked a lot, you know, when it’s time to hire an attorney, right, or when it’s time to hire my next attorney, and the rule you’re referring to is the rule of thirds. And it absolutely still holds true today, which is, you know, when you hire an attorney, you know, 1/3, you know, so if you’re gonna, if you’re gonna pay them, let’s just say you’re gonna pay him 100,000 They should be bringing in, you know, 300,000 of that, right, so 1/3 of the revenue that are going to generate those to pay them 1/3 To overhead 1/3 to profit is kind of how that goes. And, you know, that kind of a multiple should be a minimum, you know, that’s really a bare minimum. Is that kind of 3x factor, if

 

Steve Fretzin  [17:58]

you will. So 3x on itself an attorney is is billing, you know, $300,000 a year. Right, that attorney should cost me 100,000? Yeah, at the most. Okay. Absolutely. Now, is that changing because of the great resignation, where bigger firms and mid market firms are paying exponentially more for the same attorney doing the same, our same job? I mean, there’s some people making 100 $150,000 More than they were yesterday, just because they change jobs or ask for it? And is that going to then screw up that entire rule of thirds, that you just shared?

 

Ryan Kimler  [18:35]

Yeah. So over the last few years, especially as more people have started to work remotely, right, there has been a bit of a shift in it, where you probably have a little less overhead cost, right, as a lot of these firms don’t need as much space anymore, right, which cuts back on their overhead. And so then at that point, if you free up money from that category, then you’ve got a little bit of money to play with. Yeah, but if you’re not freeing up that money, you know, and you’re making the choice to not follow that rule of thirds. And and let’s say maybe you’re like in the two and a half times multiple the money that you’re cutting into, it’s not your overhead, your bills are still getting paid. And it’s not the employee, the attorney is still getting paid. It’s you’re cutting into your own profits. Yeah. Right, which you can do. Right. Right.

 

Steve Fretzin  [19:27]

I mean, where do you where do you where do you raise the rates on the clients? Sure. Is that okay?

 

Ryan Kimler  [19:32]

That’s yeah, I mean, that’s, that’s definitely a possibility is Yeah. But I mean, you know, either way, either way, it slices out, right. I mean, I don’t think you want to cut in to the profit number that you’ve got them and you don’t want to be running a thin margin law firm.

 

Steve Fretzin  [19:46]

Is that but is there, isn’t it? Ryan? I’m just I’m just poking at the barrel a little bit here. But isn’t that the biggest mistake that lawyer law firm owners make is that they kind of put themselves last and I get why? Because I’m a Business Owner, I’ve, I’ve had big overhead in my past and I, you know, I kind of just worry about everybody but myself, and then I realized, you know, maybe I’m not taking, you know, I gotta pay myself I got it I got I got a mortgage, too, is that is that kind of a mistake you see small firm owners make?

 

Ryan Kimler  [20:15]

Definitely at times, and probably where I’ve seen this the most is when they go out and they hire a little bit too soon. Right. And it really starts to they, you know, they, when they were by themselves, they probably built up quite a bit of cash in the bank. Right? Because they were just by themselves, they didn’t have a lot of overhead, not a lot of expenses. Right. And then what ends up happening is they probably hire a little bit too soon. Yeah. And the ramp up time just doesn’t kick in as fast as what they think. And they start to see that bank balance, just kind of drop, and drop and drop and drop and drop. And they don’t want to go back and and have to fire any employees because they hired too soon. Right. And so then like, like you’re talking about, they kind of become the sacrifice, if you will, they kind of don’t take care of themselves put themselves last because they want to take care of their employees. And it’s really a tough situation to be in without a doubt. Really, really tough situation.

 

Steve Fretzin  [21:04]

So when you meet with a lawyer or the head of a law firm, I mean, what kind of of process are you going through to understand their numbers and understand that they’re in good shape? Or bad? What what are you going through with them?

 

Ryan Kimler  [21:19]

Great question. Yeah. So Well, first, I just start with a conversation with the attorney. Right, I want to get an idea of of what they’ve got going on in the business and and where they think things stand. And then also kind of talking about where they want to be, right. I mean, most people, when they reach out to me, there’s a bit of a gap there, right? There’s a gap between where they are today and where they want to be. So I kind of explore that a little bit to see if make sure that it’s a good fit, make sure that I can help them.

 

Steve Fretzin  [21:44]

You sound like me. We’re both we’re both like evaluating attorneys to find out how messed up they are. To know Yeah, if what we do actually solves for x, you know, with, that’s great. All right. Well, we’re both Redbirds. So there you go.

 

Ryan Kimler  [21:58]

There you go. And then, yeah, and then then after we have that conversation, then typically I’ll dive into a key, what I call my key trending numbers assessment. And really what that looks like is I’m really looking at trend data over the last couple of years of their law firm. And I’m, you know, running it running a few tests, like I kind of talked about, I’m running payroll as a percentage of revenue, and really just judging that compared to what I’ve seen in the industry, and seeing, you know, what trend that they’ve got, that’s really preventing them from accumulating more profit. Usually, there’ll be a number that’s really out of whack and needs to be fixed. That’s really what’s holding their business back from making more profit and more cash flow. So that key trend in numbers assessment was really, really key. I’ll put that together for the law firm. We’ll go over it. And that gives them a starting place gives us a starting place on what we need to go fix. Yeah,

 

Steve Fretzin  [22:55]

that makes a lot of sense. Generally speaking, though, what is the CFO do for a law firm? Like if what size do you need to be to have like a virtual or interim or whatever it might be called CFO at a firm? Is it going to be for a one person operation? Or is it better for a 10? Or 20? Or 3050? Person operation?

 

Ryan Kimler  [23:15]

Yeah, so that’s a great question. I think. And I think a lot of people, not just attorneys and law firms, a lot of people in general in the world have a big misconception around CFOs. Right. So most people hear the word CFO, and they the first thing their mind jumps to is big company, right? Google, Apple, Microsoft stuff like that. Well, they got CFOs it makes sense. They’re millions and millions and millions of dollars. Right. But in reality, you know, with the way things are today, and and, you know, remote work and part time are outside CFOs, like you’re talking about and how I operate like myself. I’ve worked with law firms that are typically they’re doing around $500,000 in revenue a year. So that that can be a solo. Yeah, that can absolutely be a solo. Yeah. So anywhere from 500,000 up to about 5 million, right? Okay. And really, when I come in, and he My job is to make the business more efficient. And my sole focus is on improving profit and cash flow in the business. It’s my job to analyze, you know, the financial strengths and weaknesses of the business. And really, you know, propose corrective actions, when I find a weakness, when I find a number that’s out of spec is to not only let the CEO know or the owner know, our partner, whoever it is that I’m working with, or my contact is not only let them know, but then also get together with them and and put together an action plan that we can enact in the next 30 days to really pull the lever and make that number move, so that their businesses on the way to being more profitable.

 

Steve Fretzin  [24:48]

So if it’s something that you review, and you can basically give advice and fix, it might just be a small amount of time that they spend with you because you kind of tell them what’s going on. And here’s what you need to do. And then maybe they reach back to as they expand. But other other firms that have that may have ongoing challenges and things that need that when you say put an action plan, where you would be involved with them over a period of a year or two, three, whatever it might be, so that they can keep their numbers under control and, and not maybe fall into a bad habit.

 

Ryan Kimler  [25:19]

Yeah, absolutely. And most of the clients that come to me, we end up working together on an ongoing basis. And what ends up happening is I ended up building them out a dashboard, with their key important numbers. I tried to cut it down to nine or 10. You know, but they’re going to be the ones that are, we’re probably, you know, out of spec a little bit on the financial assessment that I do. Yeah. And then, you know, obviously, that’s a scoreboard that we look at on a monthly basis. And usually, you know, there’s one or two numbers on that scoreboard that, again, are out of spec, and then we go and we attack it and go work on it. So that’s how most of the clients end up working with me as it is on a longer term basis. And, yes, some of them, I mean, even multiple years, right. Usually, when I have a kickoff call with a client, we set five year goals. So I tried to set them up to achieve their five year goals.

 

Steve Fretzin  [26:11]

Beautiful. Well, really interesting stuff. And again, we don’t talk about the numbers very often on this show, you know, we talk about, you know, marketing, and we talk about, you know, time management and all this stuff. But it really is important, because if the numbers aren’t lining up, if the numbers aren’t, you know, put in properly if you don’t have those key performance indicators, or, or key trending, you know, numbers that you were mentioning, you could be messed up for a long time and not even realize it because you’re not able to look at yourself and your business as accurately as an expert. Absolutely. Yeah. It’s like it’s like a law. It’s like a business not using a lawyer to handle their legal needs, because they just put their head in the sand. So yeah, we need to have experts like lawyers, lawyers or experts. We lawyers need experts. So absolutely. So let me ask you about your game changing book. It’s, and I appreciate you submitting that to me, story brand by Donald Miller, why did you submit that as your game changing book?

 

Ryan Kimler  [27:06]

So for me, you know, kind of like attorneys when they go through school, you know, they’re not taught about business and accounting and all that. I mean, for me, you know, going through school doing accounting and finance, I wasn’t taught about marketing. Right. And so story brand is the book that my mentor recommended to me, when really, really loved it really resonated with me, and, you know, really put me on a path to better market my business, and better grow my firm. And so it’s really just a huge, huge game changer for me. And it’s, you know, it’s that was

 

Steve Fretzin  [27:40]

the that was there just just getting one step deeper. I mean, was there one thing in the book that you remember, that was, like really resonated with you that you said, wow, that’s, that’s what I need to do that could change how I’m viewed in the marketplace? Or that I could do that would that would, you know, make me stand out, you know, in a, you know, a sea of competitors?

 

Ryan Kimler  [27:59]

Or Sure, yeah, so the way that Donald Miller talks about how stories are put together, and he talks about how movies are always put together, right, and kind of ruined movies for me for the rest of my life.

 

Steve Fretzin  [28:11]

Because a movie that you’re you’re trying to formulate in your head.

 

Ryan Kimler  [28:15]

Yeah, yeah. I know where this goes. Right. But definitely that part of it, right. And I was like, wow, you know, I really need to invite my customers into the story. And, you know, I’m not the hero of their story, right? I mean, whoever I’m working with the attorney, they’re the hero of the story, right? And I’m just the guide that guides them along financially. And so that that piece of it that concept really changed my business.

 

Steve Fretzin  [28:41]

There there the Indiana Jones in your short round. Yeah. For those Indiana Jones fans out there, there’s three, three, that’s, hey, listen, those were some good movies. Were really good stuff. I appreciate that if people want to get in touch with you, Ryan to hear more about a net profit CFO and to connect with you maybe for for an evaluation on their firm, what are the best ways for them to reach you? Yep.

 

Ryan Kimler  [29:06]

So best ways to reach me first of all, you can find me on LinkedIn. If you could go Ryan Keller, that’s probably one of the first first names is gonna pop up our first things that are going to pop up on Google and then you can also my website, net profit cfo.com And then other than that, if you want to email me, you can email me Ryan at net profit cfo.com as well.

 

Steve Fretzin  [29:28]

Awesome, man. Well, thanks for being on the show sharing your wisdom and talking the numbers and you know, I hate I hate numbers. Like I right away, I hired a bookkeeper. like day one, I opened a business I didn’t even have any business. I was like, I need a bookkeeper. I don’t want to send out an invoice I don’t want to write do my own p&l. I don’t want to have to review my, my my credit card receipts are they so I appreciate you what you do, man. It’s a it’s it’s a it’s a very noble thing that you do to help people with with the math and the numbers. So so thank you for doing what you do and for being on the show.

 

Ryan Kimler  [30:00]

Absolutely, it was definitely my pleasure. And that’s definitely where my passion lies for sure. So

 

Steve Fretzin  [30:05]

awesome. Awesome. And hey everybody, thank you for spending some time with Ryan and I today you know nine things that you can learn about your numbers was shared, great, great game changing book I mean all kinds of takeaways so hopefully again you’re you know, you’re listening you’re taking notes, you’re be paying attention, trying to get to be that lawyer, someone who’s competent, organized and a skilled Rainmaker. Take care everybody, be safe, be well, and we will talk again soon. Bye bye, everybody.

 

Narrator  [30:34]

Thanks for listening to be that lawyer. Life changing strategies and resources for growing a successful law practice. Visit Steve’s website fretzin.com. For additional information, and to stay up to date on the latest legal business development and marketing trends. For more information and important links about today’s episode, check out today’s show notice