Somewhere in the city the sales guy was blissfully unaware that his entire fragile world was already crashing and burning down – and that some time after that, his company would follow him into oblivion. We ordered another round of martinis, turned to more interesting topics – and forgot about him entirely. This is life in the fast lane.

Banks have more money to spend than some industry groups so it’s pretty typical for technology companies to target them. My colleague at one of the larger New York banks had spent a chunk of his morning listening to a pitch from a software vendor – earnestly urging him to buy their game-changing new product. A relatively modest company, the product represented a major investment and a bank such as this would make it all worthwhile if they pulled in the revenue before year-end. And, you might say, why not?

My colleague had another visitor that week. The embedded rep for one of the largest software companies on the planet came calling about their product. Not as good. A lot salesy. A little rough around the corners. Here’s what he said: “Listen, take it, try it and don’t worry about paying for it. If you don’t like it, sobeit. If you like it, throw it into next year’s budget and we’ll add it to our invoice.”

You don’t need me to spell out who got the business.

And that’s why we sat sipping a second martini with the hopes and dreams of the first guy strewn on the floor around us like tape on a cutting room floor or the sawdust in a butcher’s shop.

Somewhat controversially, we’ve consistently said that the #legaltech industry needs to get outside its silo and think about the world the way others do – and will. The competitive landscape is shifting and will surely shift further. The fight will come to your door. The legal technology space remains remarkably inexpensive to buy into – which means that you may find yourself staring down Fortune 1000 competition. If you even get to see the competition. If you’re even at the table. Or in the room.

The happy space that law has been for many years will not be impervious to change – and the silo will be broken by players who move in from the outside. Winner takes all.

The gloves are off. The fight is on. Get in the fight and be ready to fight to win – or go home.

 

DK