2nd Wave

about this episode

ā€œIā€™m an athlete, a warrior. We should always be ready to fight everybody on our worst day.ā€ Nate Diaz

episode transcribed

Todd Burnham 0:00
Hi, this is Todd Burnham. I am a licensed practicing attorney. But just because you're listening to me doesn't mean that I represent you. This is for informational purposes only if you're good with that, then let's roll.

Chris Braden 0:20
Season One was about how Todd Burnham started Burnham Law in his basement and built it to one of the most prestigious law firms in Colorado by thinking outside of the box and surrounding himself with the best lawyers and staff in the industry. Now during a pandemic Burnham Law is still growing. How you ask? Walk toward the storm and face it head on and you empower the people that help get you there. It's time to execute. It's time to make some lemonade. It's time to burn the ships. This is Deep Bench with Todd Burnham. Hey, Todd, how's it going, bud?

Todd Burnham 0:57
Good, man. How are you, Chris?

Chris Braden 0:59
So it's funny. In the last episode, you said our votes probably cancel each other out. Which is funny.

Todd Burnham 1:05

Chris Braden 1:06
Because I never I never talk politics because I like to keep friends.

Todd Burnham 1:12
Yeah, I got you.

Chris Braden 1:13
But so

Todd Burnham 1:15
Well you are in the Springs.

Chris Braden 1:16
We've definitely talked about how you guys reaction and how you face COVID head on and how the company is doing well. In fact, I don't know if you want to put numbers out there. But you're doing you're you're doing better this month than you did last year, this month.

Todd Burnham 1:32
Every month since March. Except for the I think except for March and April, we've exceeded exceeded our numbers from 2019. Okay, so all of that happening during during a pandemic is pretty incredible.

Chris Braden 1:48
Heck yeah.

Todd Burnham 1:49
And it's constantly evolving, moving forward, like trying to how do we advance how do we keep moving in the right direction? How do we adapt?

Chris Braden 1:59

Todd Burnham 1:59
Adapt or die.

Chris Braden 2:01

Todd Burnham 2:01
It's all it is. And we talked last episode about partnership, right? And the importance like and so like, partners that I have are are people that add value, they bring ideas in. So this is this is the thing, like I can get us set up and say, oh, okay, this COVID is happening, or this pandemic is gonna happen. And Stephanie and Donna and everybody else is like, Oh, you're nuts. I'm like, Just do it. Trust me. But even before then we were always trying to hone our stuff. So we were cloud based a year ago, we were making sure that we had processes and all these things in place a year ago. So those are the things that you get to but then it's still here, right? And now we're also getting word that, like what's today today, we just got word that Denver schools are moving older elementary students online.

Chris Braden 2:55
Yeah, I bet their parents love that.

Todd Burnham 2:57
Yeah. I mean, this this sucks, man. This whole thing sucks.

Chris Braden 3:01
Well, and that's the question I have for you. So we're so you are ready. You guys are thriving right now. And there's a lot of stuff that's kind of up in the air. Like they said there could be a second wave. We don't know, the Dow is going up and down. We don't know what Wall Street's doing. Who knows what happens after the election? Like, there's a lot of stuff out there that we just don't know, how it's gonna happen. How do you not rest on your laurels and make sure that not only you, but the whole firm is ready to address anything that comes up?

Todd Burnham 3:33
Well, I mean, I think it's the messaging, the messaging that I think of is, you know, remember, I think last season, we talked about how I would, my lacrosse coach BJ O'Hara would say like Burnham stop. Don't worry about the other team, just worry about yourself, right? So the first I think what you want to do during this time is taken inventory. Take an inventory of where you're at, what are your strengths? What are your weaknesses? What can you focus on? The only thing that you can control are things that are within your control, right? I can't control the outcome of the election. I've got one vote? You know, I voted. Everyone vote out there.

Chris Braden 4:14
Yeah, do it.

Todd Burnham 4:15
And then after that, it's like, alright, what are my goals? What are the goals right now? Is the goal to survive? Is the goal to thrive? And for me, it's, um, I'm taking off in a month to with my family for three months. I'm going to ride out COVID in Kauai.

Chris Braden 4:31
Yeah, that's thriving. I see your book right here.

Todd Burnham 4:34
Oh, man. I'm so excited about this just because half the time and Archer kills me, he's like, it's still I want Mommy, you know, so, you know, I'm just excited to just go for walks with him, you know, like, and so things like that matter to me. So the, so what I try to do is I help Stephanie and the partners kind of kind of figure out what are our weaknesses, What are our strengths? What are our goals? If you're if you're don't have goals, if you don't have an objective, then you're just, you're just out there. I watched the most incredible movie the other day. And I think it's a top 20 movie of all time.

Chris Braden 5:13
Oh, what is it?

Todd Burnham 5:14

Chris Braden 5:16
I love that movie.

Todd Burnham 5:17
It's amazing.

Chris Braden 5:18
I love that movie.

Todd Burnham 5:19
Oh, my god Archer's so much into it. And I just keep watching it, you know? And it's the life lessons are all there. Frozen. It's all about fear. Yeah, stay on the island. We don't go past the reef.

Chris Braden 5:32
Yeah, Moana couldn't go past the what? The incoming tide?

Todd Burnham 5:35

Chris Braden 5:35
She kept dying there.

Todd Burnham 5:37
So you think about those things? And like, what are you afraid of? Don't just look at this as like, let's just stay safe on the island.

Chris Braden 5:45

Todd Burnham 5:46
This is, and this is kind of my thought of this is it's not specifics. It's mindset. You've got to be mentally tough during this time, and be able to put yourself out there in a way that is scary. And and also putting your like, this. Is that ultimate leveling of the playing field still.

Chris Braden 6:05
Sure, right. Oh, yeah, you're right. 100%.

Todd Burnham 6:08
Half of these businesses out there are just trying to survive.

Chris Braden 6:14
That's what I wanted to ask you about. Everything that's happening during this just pandemic and stuff. Everyone's focus is on survival.

Todd Burnham 6:24

Chris Braden 6:24
Instead of where as you're thriving, and I think that's a mindset, because you found a way to make it happen during all of this.

Todd Burnham 6:32
Well, look, I mean, real estate, it's so funny. It's so interesting, you know, in 2008, I was heavily all in in real estate, and 2008 hit and it was the housing crisis and lost it all right? And so it's so funny how now, you would think that the housing would be the same and just like, try to find some pandemic proof business. And it's not even I look at, I look at a business, Boulder Strength. Jed Glass is a great trainer, who I trained with in Boulder. And I talked to him all the time about this. And his, his model. It works in a pandemic, he also has, he does like individual training masks on one on one. And then he also has online, right? So he's thinking about, alright, if it goes, if if you get shut down, you still have this, right? But he's also trying to grow the, you know, how can you how can you grow both at the same time? If that's the kind of mindset that you want to have? Like, what's the thing that I know is going to happen? If there's if it gets shut down? Right, you're gonna, okay, do you do mobile training? Yeah, to go to people's houses? Do you? Like think like that? If we're, if we're talking about trainers, or do you want to be the big box gym? who's like, up, we're just shut down? Like, you're all screwed, man. Like, so. For me. It's, it's, you know, I used to have this idea a long time ago. And I had an email on it. And it was just before its time, and I don't think it'll ever work. But it's house call lawyer.com. Okay, I was gonna be like, that's what I'm gonna do. I'm gonna go to people's houses. And I'm like, Yeah, that's great. But what else? It's not just, that's just the concept, but you still to be great at what you do and all that stuff. So the things that I think of are, it's not necessarily what do we do? If it's like, develop a plan? And tell me why it won't work now. If you just sit on your ass and not get better. And you're not constantly trying to like, hone your craft, hone your processes hone your everything, you're just missing. Right? You'll you'll get by, but people will pass you it's just like, totally girls. It's you know, if you're not, if you're not against the bounce back, don't get pissed off when you're not starting. That's all.

Chris Braden 8:57
You know, the funny thing is, is that that at home lawyer, you're kind of like doing that. Now you just executed on Zoom or WebEx.

Todd Burnham 9:05
Seriously. Right? Yeah. And, and so the, the fascinating thing is, is like, Alright, so what about this slice? Think of like, what's going to happen in a year from now when there's a vaccine? Are people really going to go back to the office? What's it going to look like? I think that people would like to have some flex scheduling, so why don't we and this what I'm doing in the springs is having half of it is a B works with individual offices and other half is the law firm. Where do you go What else after that? What else right after that, what else is there? And I I spend most of my days just thinking like that. So this next wave is coming. You know, it's, it's, you know, what's what it looks like. So, what can you do in your firm or your business to be ahead of it? And What are people going to need? Like? What is the thing that's going to separate you from other firms? And that's the big question. I think of processes, I think of efficiencies. I think of, of the idea that Zoom calls and and zoom hearings, you're, you're spending less money on preparation and paperwork, you're not going to court.

Chris Braden 10:23

Todd Burnham 10:23
That saves people money. You're not traveling, you're not doing all the you not having to make copies and everything for Judge, I think judges are are liking this more, I think there's so many different things that you can do, and how can you become more efficient? And I think efficiency is the key to the whole thing. Efficiency, how do you become more efficient, which saves money, you can bring on more clients. And for us, what we're doing is we created, this is good, we're trying to become so efficient, and streamlined and methodical, that we add more people, even if we have the same amount of work, okay, because you can we can train people differently. We can do better work, because you have like a checklist.

Chris Braden 11:13

Todd Burnham 11:13
And so then you're meeting, and then we also have for younger lawyers meeting with the senior lawyer and going through did you do this? Why not? Did you do this? Why not? And so it's not like it, these are the things that are available that you can do. And you don't have to always do them, but at least you have some some form or fashion of organization and, and structure.

Chris Braden 11:38

Todd Burnham 11:38
Those little things are incredibly beneficial to any business. I mean, I It's amazing that not everybody does it, like actually made the checklist and the into more like flowcharts.

Chris Braden 11:52
Okay cool.

Todd Burnham 11:52
You know?

Chris Braden 11:53

Todd Burnham 11:53
So things like that. I think if if you're making moves like to survive, that's one thing. But if you want to do more than get then get it more compact, more tight, less, less spending unnecessarily, and that includes in wasteful, wasteful spends.

Chris Braden 12:13
And we get back to you running it like a sports team, because if you think of a football team, whether it's a college team or pro team, let's say you're in lineman, you got your offensive line coach, then you got the offensive coordinator, and you got the head coach. And that's when you can be trained, because the more detailed stuff to the offensive line, you're going to get from your offensive line coach, move up to the offensive coordinator, he's going to look at it in a different way. He's going to look at it more of a team concept.

Todd Burnham 12:41

Chris Braden 12:41
than the head coach, so same stuff. Good job, man.

Todd Burnham 12:44
Yeah, you like that?

Chris Braden 12:45
No, yeah I think it's cool man.

Todd Burnham 12:46
Yeah. And so I think of those things, and I think of like, even I think it's important to like, keep consistency, right now, it's not a time to like, make changes that are going to change the trajectory of your business. It's, I want there to be policies, procedures that people can rely on, and that that there's something stable and solid there. That's foreseeable and structured. And if you do that, and you open it up to like, even we do surveys, like, with the firm, like, what do you think of this? What do you think of that, like anonymous stuff? And can you get your culture tight? I don't think people want to see a video from me every day anymore about like, alright, we had this many calls, because you see the numbers are happening, right? So don't be afraid. That's why I did that. I want people to feel good about what we're doing. Like, we're not going under everyone just relax.

Chris Braden 12:52

Todd Burnham 12:53
If there's other people in the firm that are that are struggling, like then you have teammates that are bringing them up. So I think this is the time to hunker down. It's winter time coming. You want to hone those things. So you're comfortable, you're comfortable, no matter what the numbers are. Because you're always going to, if you have this solid kind of basis and like flowchart, if you will, for me that that's just honing your craft. And I've been harping on that for years. And I think we're at that level now where it's like, okay, how do we get better? It's a lot of its culture, you know, how do you support people that are struggling, that aren't as strong in certain areas? So, yeah, it's common, don't jump off the ship. Don't think that you're close to the land. You're not. I think this is the time when you can really challenge yourself and, and I think from a from the, from my perspective, I would also look at this time at the individuals really focusing on the people that you have that Felice for the firm and, you know, what are their personal goals during this time? What are they concerned about? How can we help them like with their parents, like, how do we help them if their kids need help? Or this is what I wanted, like, I want to play some Hero ball here.

Chris Braden 15:00
Like to get you know, and that's one cool thing. And, you know, it was even before I met you, I partnered with the, you know, Stephanie and the people in the springs, and they were, they love to give back. It was like, their favorite thing to do. And I don't think you're Oh boy, I think that's being human.

Todd Burnham 15:17
Well, I mean, I yeah, I appreciate that.

Chris Braden 15:20
That's really cool.

Todd Burnham 15:21
It is. And that's the stuff that I think once you get to this point in this level, it's kind of like, you know, it's like you talked before about businesses, and you have to give back to the community. I just really want to focus on this wave. On making sure that How about this? How about, you know, Stephanie Randall lost like 60 pounds?

Chris Braden 15:39

Todd Burnham 15:39
Yeah. Yeah. She like, she's like committed to during this time.

Chris Braden 15:45

Todd Burnham 15:45
During a pandemic.

Chris Braden 15:46

Todd Burnham 15:47
When most people are like, shoving shit in their face constantly, right?

Chris Braden 15:51
It's easy to do.

Todd Burnham 15:51
It's easy to do. I brought my Boulder Canyon, you know, potato chips over here.

Chris Braden 15:56
Yeah, those are good for you. They're made in Boulder.

Todd Burnham 15:58
Exactly. It must be good. I want to like, I would like to start focusing on what other people's goals are during this time, like over the next three months? And say, like, how can we help you? Do you want to get a personal trainer? How can we help with that? Is there like, we could do discounts or something like we have? We do gym memberships already, but are what are the things that you want to accomplish?

Chris Braden 16:21

Todd Burnham 16:21
And try to help these individuals at our firm achieve personal goals.

Chris Braden 16:27
Because Oh, that's

Todd Burnham 16:28

Chris Braden 16:29
Like, where do you want to be? April 1? How do you want to get there?

Todd Burnham 16:32

Chris Braden 16:33
Oh, that's good.

Todd Burnham 16:33
Isn't that good?

Chris Braden 16:34
I like that.

Todd Burnham 16:35
So you're, you're focusing more on the people and not the business because the people make the business anyway.

Chris Braden 16:40
Good stuff, man.

Todd Burnham 16:42
Right on.

Chris Braden 16:42
Um, I'll tell you what I want by April 1.

Todd Burnham 16:45
What do you want?

Chris Braden 16:46
It's ever changing.

Todd Burnham 16:48
Right? You're gonna um, I think you've got someone cool coming up next.

Chris Braden 16:52
I do. Finally this is like almost a third or no, we're almost on the 40th episode and we finally get to hear from Yeah, your lovely wife Katy. Here it is. Are you gonna sit there?

Todd Burnham 17:03

Chris Braden 17:04
Is it gonna be weird?

Todd Burnham 17:05
No, I'm taking off. I'm gonna go let her be real. See what happens.

Chris Braden 17:11
I've interviewed athletes with their with their consultant in the in the room.

Todd Burnham 17:16

Chris Braden 17:17
It doesn't bother me a bit.

Todd Burnham 17:18

Chris Braden 17:19
In fact, I always look at them. I'm like, is that okay?

Todd Burnham 17:22
You're funny.

Chris Braden 17:23
Good stuff, buddy.

Todd Burnham 17:23
I'll catch you later. Hey, thanks for listening. Make sure you subscribe, and until next time, keep getting better.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai