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A Flip of a Coin ...

Date:July 21, 2014

A little over a year ago Natalie MacDonald and Stuart Rudner flipped a coin to create a name for their new law practice and Stuart won the coin toss – thus creating Rudner MacDonald LLP.

That coin toss is the only thing Natalie and Stuart left to chance! Every facet of their new business was carefully and strategically planned. Natalie and I had lunch recently at Sassafras in Yorkville, Natalie’s new lunch hangout. It was great to catch up. After more than a few minutes of catching up I wanted to ask the big question.

‘Well Natalie, you’ve survived your first year in the new practice so tell me, did you meet your financial objectives or was the goal a little too high?’ You see, I know Natalie and she’s a very determined woman. I know that both Natalie and Stuart have high expectations of themselves and I know that they would set high goals for the business. Natalie’s response to my question was an energetic ‘Absolutely – we exceeded them!’

Was I surprised to hear her answer? Truthfully, because we always speak truthfully about such matters – Not at all.

Was I worried that the answer might be ‘no’ or ‘not quite’ or ‘almost’? Yes. Because, essentially Rudner MacDonald LLP was a start-up business, with a full set of clients at the beginning! Both had come from thriving law firms, both were well-known and respected within their firms and in the industry. But, start-ups are tough and professionals, like lawyers, aren’t the best at building new businesses. Many of them are brilliant at their craft but building a business requires other skills like sales and marketing, operational and organizational structures, financial management, hiring and human resource development and simply business management.

So, what happened? Why has Rudner MacDonald LLP beat the odds? 85% of new businesses fail.

I’m happy to say that Rudner MacDonald LLP is a great story about two determined people who want to make a difference. It’s hard to just list the success elements but this might give you a perspective on what they’ve done well. Here’s what we’ve seen:

·         Reputation

o   Both Natalie and Stuart have created excellent reputations and they are well known within the industry and to corporate and Canadian employees.

·         Subject Matter Experts

o   Both Natalie and Stuart have published texts that establishes their credibility as experts in their field

§  Natalie is the author of ‘Extraordinary Damages in Canadian Employment Law’

§  Stuart is the author of ‘You’re Fired! Just Cause for Dismissal in Canada’

o   Experience Matters – to borrow from our own tagline at 4Growth, with a combined 27 years of experience filled with accomplishments and success stories, both Natalie and Stuart have been repeatedly named among Canada’s Top Employment Law Practitioners.

·         Branding

o   ‘The Next Chapter in Employment Law’. Natalie and Stuart didn’t just rush to open their new practice. They wanted to make a difference. They determined that there was a gap in employment law and they wanted to deliver to quality service in a cost-effective manner.

·         Technology and Social Media

o   RM has utilized multi-media extensively to tell their stories, using personalized videos to connect with their clients and prospective clients

o   Engaging Media

§  Both engage often in LinkedIn to share their views and opinions

§  Engaging newsletters – Monthly communication piece that provides insight into employment law from either an employee or employer

§  Webinars – a monthly series of webinars to help people understand employment law both by Google Hangouts, and by Linked In Q&A

§  Easy to navigate website so people can find insightful information

§  Both are frequently interviewed by the media and write articles for the Globe and Mail and other publications

§  Photos – Natalie and Stuart are front and centre. Their photos demonstrate they’re personable and approachable.

As you can imagine, Rudner MacDonald is top of mind whenever I meet with business owners or colleagues who have found difficulty in their employment. I’ve used Natalie successfully in the past and would recommend her 100% of the time. RM is the next chapter in employment law and I can’t wait to see them again – socially I hope!

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Date:July 21, 2014