Do not let the negativity of others to bring down your goals and hopes for the future.
Chris Jackman is a 37-year-old man who grew up in Dallas, Texas. He grew up in Dallas, Texas before attending Texas A&M for his undergraduate degree and Creighton University for law school. While in law school, he clerked for a federal judge and worked at the United States Attorney’s Office. He also served as an editor on his school’s law review. After law school, he took a position with a Seattle-based personal injury law firm. He tried his first case to a jury a few months after graduating from law school. A year later he opened his own firm called The Jackman Law Firm, where he focused his practice on family law and personal injury law matters exclusively.
Chris Jackman has obtained millions of dollars for his clients for their personal injury cases. He’s been named as a rising star by Super Lawyers magazine and he’s received many other awards in the legal industry for his accomplishments. He’s consistently recognized by his clients with five-star reviews for his dedication and attentiveness to their case. His biggest reward has been helping his clients when they are in a difficult position with their case and he can help them achieve greater results than they would be able to on their own.
Currently, Chris is the owner and lead attorney at The Jackman Law Firm and Citadel Law Firm, a family law firm. He works every day to help his clients resolve their legal cases and find a lasting resolution, putting them in positions better than when they were on their own. With the help of Mr. Jackman, clients can rest assured that they will benefit from his firm’s reasoned approach.
Where did the idea for your company come from?
I received the idea for my current firm after working for a litigation firm after law school. While working there, I saw ways to improve the client experience and drive better results for clients that I wanted to act upon. I believed that the public would be better served by working for myself and serving the community under my own law firms. I understood the tactical decisions that needed to be made to help his clients and resolved to make the experience that attends clients a less stressful one and one that put their interests first.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
I start my day reading the local and national news to get a better understanding of current events around the world. Before leaving for work, I check my email for any over the night emails from his clients or opposing counsel. I normally reach the office by 7:30 or 8:00 a.m. While no day is exactly alike, most days I spend my time in client meetings, depositions, or in court advocating for my clients’ interests. After work I try to work out everyday and spend time with my family.
How do you bring ideas to life?
I believe that the best and fastest way to bring your ideas to life is to simply act, even if it’s a small step. It is easy to get bogged down in small details and a feeling that you’re overwhelmed by the size and scale of your plans. However, if you just take one small step each and every day, you will get much closer to your goals than you would if you sit around, planning and procrastinating and thinking of reasons you can’t accomplish your ideas.
What’s one trend that excites you?
The trend that most excites me is the continued inclusion of women into the profession, especially as trial lawyers. For too long the profession has been closed off, or at least not as welcome, to female trial lawyers. However, this is starting to change, and it appears that courtrooms are more and more inclusive of women.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
The most successful habit I have is my commitment to working hard for my client’s day in and day out. While it is impossible to try to influence external factors around you, it is entirely within your control to bring a tireless work ethic and dedication to what you set yourself to with respect to your work habits and commitment to your clients. If you have this mindset, you will be more productive as a result.
What advice would you give your younger self?
The biggest advice I could give to my younger self is to find your niche and stick with it, even if it appears at times as though your niche might not be paying the rewards you wish to see immediately. All too often in this age of instant gratification, it is easy to get distracted and, when you do not see the immediate results you seek, to simply move onto something else, hoping that it will reward you with instant gratification. However, this is the wrong approach. The right approach to take is to commit yourself to a particular niche or goal and work towards it.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
I believe that often your family and friends can be your biggest inhibitor for growth. So often I see young entrepreneurs who aspire to great heights, but they are held back by loyalty to family and friends, who have incorrectly shaped their thinking and self-image. While most people believe in a blind and unthinking loyalty to their family and friends, this can often be the most fatal mistake a young entrepreneur can make. Instead, it is up to the individual to make sure their thinking and belief system is aligned with their overarching goals.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
The biggest thing an entrepreneur can do is commit to their goal or cause and continue to work towards it with unwavering determination and realize that there will be many ups and downs, highs and lows, along the way but you have to remain steadfast in your resolve. It is hard sometimes to keep this in mind, but you have to or else you’ll be taken off course. A recommended exercise is to write down, daily and even nightly, your short term and immediate goals and deadlines in order to meet them. This will keep your goals a constant reminder. It is okay to revise these goals as you go along, but I am convinced that committing your goals to paper, with specific deadlines, is the surest way to get to them.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
The strategy that helped me to grow my business is that I work hard to provide exceptional customer service to all my clients. In an age of social media, the quickest way to grow a business is by providing an experience that will make your customer want to share his or her experience with others, making their experience go viral to others. It’s the cheapest marketing you can do in a sense because being committed to your client and providing exceptional service does not cost anything.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
The biggest failure was losing my first couple of cases. I learned that some cases just cannot be won, and I had to do a better job of selecting the right case to take trial since trials are stressful and risky for both the client and the attorney. Since these early setbacks, I have bounced back and been able to better advise my clients because of them.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
I would suggest thinking about creating a business that caters to elderly Americans. The demographics of America and Canada point to an unavoidable fact: people are aging, and more and more elderly people wish to stay in their homes rather than age in a retirement home or nursing home community. I believe that there is tremendous room for growth in this area in terms of transporting the elderly and caring for them in their own homes and that the first person that comes up with a brilliant solution could have an amazing business ahead.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
The best $100 I spent recently came from starting my own charitable organization. The organization is designed to provide hearing aids to underprivileged children and to help deaf children with educational opportunities they might not otherwise have. I started this charity from having worked as a tutor with children in the past who were hearing-impaired and noting that many children simply needed the right equipment and they could hear. Hearing devices can often be thousands of dollars, putting them out of reach for many children which I hope my charity can help prevent.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
I am a big fan of Clio, a cloud-based practice management software program. It helps keep me organized and focused on the appointments and upcoming projects I need to accomplish. It’s easy to use and user-friendly. I’d recommend it to anyone.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
I recommend the book Principles by Ray Dalio. Principles is both a business and life-advice book that helps anyone, especially lawyers, organize their ideas and life behind guiding principles to keep their goals and organization in alignment with their core values and fundamental beliefs. Dalio has had great success as a businessman and investor, arguably the best of the latter half of the 20th Century. At the age of 70, he is still running the world’s largest hedge fund and his life advice resonates with anyone who is attempting to achieve success in business and life.
What is your favorite quote?
“Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken.”
• Keep your foundational principles in mind to guide your goals and aspirations.
• Think about your client’s interests first.
• Do not let the negativity of others to bring down your goals and hopes for the future.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.