Episode 97 – When life as a lawyer is not really the plan but then becomes so much more than the plan with legal entrepreneur Demetrio Zema
In this week’s episode of the ‘Happy Lawyer Happy Life Podcast’ I had the pleasure of interviewing legal entrepreneur, Demetrio Zema. Over the past (almost) 2 years of interviews for this show I have had the chance to meet so many wonderful lawyers and Demetrio is someone I was so thrilled to learn more about. As the creator of the unique and innovative firm Law Squared, Demetrio is a talented entrepreneur and a leader in our industry. But aside from his talents in the world of law, I learned in this interview that Demetrio is a deeply thoughtful person, whose approach to life and business is deeply rooted in his connection with his family.
Demetrio set out to be a Diplomat and never intended to be a lawyer but I for one am grateful that what may have initially seemed a dissappointment to him, kickstarted a legal career that I sense will leave a significant legacy in ‘law land’!
Demetrio grew up in Melbourne with fortnightly trips to the family winery in beautiful South Australia- Zema Estate. It is clear that he has learned so much through this experience- watching and learning from his mother, father and grandparents. All of that wisdom has come together as he planned, launched and has grown Law Squared over the past 2 years from a solo firm to now a team of 18 across 3 states.
To grow from scratch a strong brand, deliver innovative legal solutions and build offices between Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne all in the space of 2 years tells us all so much about the talent within this lawyer, but it is his thoughtfulness, kindness and perspective on life that I think will have you hooked to the end.
Demetrio Zema and I also spoke about:
- How Demetrio set out to be a diplomat and never intended to be a lawyer but a few twists and turns along the way have turned out for the best in the end!
- Demetrio’s early life growing up in Melbourne in a strong Italian family.
- Growing up in the family business and the impact this has had on Demetrio’s perspective on work and life as he grows his own business now.
- Demetrio last his father only recently, a very significant role model in his life and has since taken on a more active role at Zema Estate.
- How ‘If you love what you do you never work a day in your life’ and Demetrio’s perspective on that famous old phrase ‘work life balance’.
- Demetrio’s early life in the law as an insurance litigator before making a shift to commercial litigation.
- How Demetrio’s decision to leave the law led to his decision to create a law firm!
- In March 2016 Law Squared was launched after Demetrio spent 6 weeks in Bali creating his business plan!
- How Demetrio started his firm with only a logo and an email address!
- Demetrio shared many insights into the operations at Law Squared- from fixed pricing to flexible work arrangements- this is a contemporary law practice at its best.
- How Demetrio gives back to his clients, his team and the broader legal community.
- The future of law- Branding, innovation, client centric practice and the importance of sharing knowledge to the future of law.
- How Demetrio deals with the resistance that comes from not only the legal community but also insurers and other business leaders when innovating in law.
- Demetrio enjoys spending time with the people he loves and exercise has become a large part of his relaxation and invigoration.
- He gives us some tips on how we can change our own happiness – despite the highs and lows of being in the legal profession.
- The future for Demetrio and Law Squared-his plan to make this happen – as well as some job openings for any listeners that are equally inspired!
- Demetrio’s Happiness Tip.
Demetrio Zema was both candid and insightful in this wonderful conversation that I know you will thoroughly enjoy.
Learn more here about upcoming events and courses and connect with Clarissa Rayward at the ‘Happy Lawyer Happy Life’ knowledge centre- A community for lawyers who want to make the best out of their life in and outside
of the law.
Listen to last week’s episode here