Think you can deliver legal services better? See a need in the legal industry you want to meet? Have the passion for innovation? Starting a company or firm will require support and “find[ing] [the] village that it will take for your start-up to grow.” You may find your village at the Legal Tech Show. Legal tech start-ups brought their A-game to the ABA Legal Tech Show 2018 in Chicago, kicking off the event with a start-up pitch competition sponsored by Clio. Many pitches clearly defined a specific problem in the legal industry, who the stakeholders were, and how each solution would solve the problem.

The next morning, I continued the theme of start-ups, attending the session Creating Your Own Legal Tech Start-up with hosts Robert Ambrogi, Law Office of Robert J. Ambrogi, and Andrew Arruda, CEO of Ross Intelligence. The attendance at the session was a testament to many in the legal industry embracing innovation and technology. The presentation centered around ten tips on starting your own company, which can also be applied to existing legal entities looking to deliver legal services differently.

Tip #1, “scratch your own itch.” “Find one problem and solve it more thoroughly than anyone else.” Become obsessed with your problem. “Fall in love with your problem”, as Erika Pagano would say. Not everyone will think your idea is good, but by knowing everything you can about your problem, and listening to your customers, you can push past traditional boundaries.

“Sell something. Anything. But do it better.” You don’t have to change the problem, but you do need to solve it a different better way on creating your own legal

 In order to push past boundaries, you will want to  #2 “find other crazy people like you.”

Who is your A Team? The ability of lawyers to collaborate with professionals of other disciplines was an additional take-away from from this tip. You want professionals with diverse thought and complimentary skills that you can see yourself working with in the future.


Once you create a company, you don’t want employees who come in and just take a paycheck. Culture is key. Passion is key. Set and define it within your organization. “Culture is the bedrock of how the company operates – it forms the environment in which a company’s strategy and brand either grows and blossoms or shrinks and dies.”

The culture of the ABA Legal Tech Show Chicago brought me back a second year. A culture of innovation and support for entrepreneurial aspirations. The Tech Show left me energized and empowered for the future of the practice of law.

For more on the 10 tips to a successful start-up see