Shouldn’t you have a lawyer who rides his bike to work?

The idea occurred to me recently that if you are the founder of a startup or the president of a small company, you should find a lawyer who rides his bike to work. I’m not sure what triggered this random thought, but as I have considered it, I have come to feel that it has more than a little truth.

People who ride their bikes to work tend to be independent thinkers and doers. We find the right way to get around, even if it is not the way everyone else does. We travel on our own terms, using our own power. It takes commitment – a willingness to brave the elements and the occasional insane driver. But then, we really enjoy the ride.

I can think of a few more reasons: cyclists are agile, adept at navigating unexpected twists and turns in the road. We come to work energized. We have more endurance than the lawyer on the other side of the table. And consider: whose fees are likely to be more reasonable: the guy driving the Mercedes or the gal riding the Trek?

Cycling may simply be a proxy for the broader issue of “cultural fit.” A Fortune 500 company, with a lush lobby, receptionists and expensive art is probably most comfortable working with a large law firm that has a lush lobby, receptionists and expensive art. But for, say, a tech startup, many of whose developers (and perhaps even the founder) commute to work by bike, the cyclist-attorney may be the right choice. Like our small-company clients, we operate with maximum efficiency. Our law offices and law libraries are on our laptops and in the cloud. There is no one to answer the phone when you call except for us.

Which kind of lawyer is right for you? Go take a bike ride and think about it.


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