As CEO & Founder of Law 365, Kim Simmonds’ mission is to help her team be happy, strong and healthy. “Staff welfare is paramount to me. I truly believe everything works from this starting position.” To accomplish this, she wants to establish a new way of being a leader – One who has great empathy and closeness with her team, and who understands the stresses and strains that each has at one time or another in their life. A devoted practitioner of the Wim Hof breathing method, she is creating a workplace where people feel calm and centered, one that enables and inspires the team to look at life in a wonderfully different and happy way. “I believe we are all given just one life,and we need to make the best and happiest decisions for ourselves. If I can facilitate that as a leader of Law 365 than I know I will have accomplished my mission in life.”
In order to achieve the goals she has set for herself as an employer, Kim decided that she needed to focus on one area of law and do it exceptionally well. Law 365 is unique because it is the only law firm in the world to cater solely to the day to day contract needs of Microsoft Partners. “This makes us appealing to our clients because we really know everything about their business – sometimes we even steer them to thinking more commercially about their cash and ensuring their contracts represent those needs accurately,” she adds. “We understand their ambitions and their pain points. Our subscription model is very easy to understand and use, clients pay a monthly retainer rather than being charged in 6-minute increments. This allows my team to take their eye off the clock and focus on what’s really important — helping the client with every aspect of a deal no matter how long it takes.
Making Contracts Easier
Being married to an established Microsoft Partner and entrepreneur, Tim Wallis, Founder of Content and Code, Kim had a ring side seat to the problems that companies like his faced going into negotiations with clients. “Often they’d be met by a team of in-house counsel and it was almost impossible for them to argue favorable terms to protect themselves as suppliers,” she explains. “The other issue is that often Microsoft Partners are not that big, and they can’t afford big legal bills. A lot of them didn’t want to talk to lawyers because paying 10% of their contract price to a lawyer didn’t seem to make much commercial sense. But we’ve shown them that having us acting as their “in-house legal team” can save them time and money. By modelling her business on a Legal as a Service (LaaS) model, Kim is bringing Microsoft Partners the dream ticket to their door: Specialization, affordability, and of course, impeccable client service.
“For ambitious businesses that can’t (or don’t want to) hire their own legal team, we’re the perfect partner. We understand the commercial terms that need their attention and we’re able to argue for those without ruffling the client’s feathers.”
She understands that it is hard to find lawyers who understand the pains of a business owner and essentially understand the tech lingo and how it impacts the business when it goes wrong. “Law 365 gets it. All! Clients always tell us that they have more time to do what they do best – run their business, bring in new deals – after they’ve handed off the legal worries to us,” states Kim. “Often the owner or CEO can spend hours pouring over contracts that they’re not confident they understand, which is a great source of anxiety. Then we come in and put their house in order, and they can focus on growing again.”
Explaining a typical scenario, Kim says they are generally approached by a relatively young Microsoft Partner business, who are growing. We start with a free legal audit – looking at the types of agreements they already have in place and what terms they have accepted from their customers. “We carefully analyse where the risk is and also where the business can improve. We help them see how others in the industry are keeping their cash safe and we have gone through many client’s acquisitions to understand how we gear their business up to be the most attractive when being sold,” she states. “Contract negotiations and getting great contracts in place really will affect the selling price. Once we do that, we establish the retainer and get going with creating new templates and helping to negotiate terms with each of their customers.”
Building a Family
Kim is looking to take the tech and legal world to a whole new level. She wants to streamline and eliminate the negatives of working with lawyers (legal jargon, slow turnarounds) and bundle that with little and big changes to emulate the client’s business – the latest tech, standing desks, but going a step further with bean bags and a yoga meditation room. She’s nurtured a strong team of individuals who take pride in being associated with the company and ensures that relationship going forward by conducting workshops every quarter for retainer clients to help train the teams with the contract process and the gotchas in contracts.
During this ongoing pandemic, Kim is taking special care of all her employees within the firm to achieve the mission statement. “During this COVID 19 pandemic when the world, and especially the working world has turned on its head, we are sending large food parcels from local farmers to each of the staff ’s homes along with a wellness package with bath oils, hand creams and essential oils,” she says. “We are also giving a 5-day holiday voucher to be used in addition to the normal holiday allowance to give everyone breathing space with home schooling and all the other stresses in our lives.” She proudly states that her staff loves their jobs, “they can’t wait for Monday mornings and are very loyal to the clients.”