Tuesday, April 21, 2009

I caught someone this afternoon writing Twitter posts during a meeting. I took a peek at her BlackBerry screen and read what she was writing. "In a meeting." "Still in the meeting." "This meeting is really dull." "I wish this meeting were over." "Will this meeting ever end?" Come on, law firm work is dull enough. Even someone like me is able to admit that. The last thing anyone needs is meta-commentary on the moment-to-moment business of being an attorney. Who could possibly want to read any of this? But here's the thing -- when I got back to the office, I tracked down her Twitter page and took a look. She has 47 followers. And three of them are clients. So she can bill this. And that makes it all worthwhile. In fact, I almost understand why clients would want their attorneys to have Twitter feeds. It's reassuring to know what you're paying for. If I can monitor someone moment to moment, I know if they're lying when the bill claims three hours of meetings on Tuesday. Or at least I'd know if they're lying if I could trust their Twitter feeds.

Which is why starting tomorrow, all of my associates will be required to join Twitter and post all day about all sorts of billable work they may or may not be doing. Just like with our billable hour reports, we're going to require shadow Twitter feeds to reflect what we want our clients to believe we're actually doing. This way, in case anyone wants to check up on us, we're completely covered. I have found the Twitter value proposition: faking it. This is a huge potential moneymaker for the firm. We can now back up our claims of 12-hour meetings, with fake documentation that our clients won't even realize isn't true. How many clients are going to doubt an associate's Twitter feed? "How much foresight would it take to fake one's entire existence just for the paper trail?" they will ask themselves, before concluding that no firm could be so genius as to do this deliberately. Except that's why they hire us. We go above and beyond.

"The meeting's still going," the associate just wrote, as she gets ready to feed the four cats she keeps in her house and treats as substitute children, making up for the fact she never met a husband, and won't have the family she always dreamed about.

Oh I love this idea. It's brilliant!

BTW glad you're back.
This is a good idea. This proves that Twitter is really very powerful. A must try.
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