Hot Topics


Jay’s a frequent speaker on a variety of unlawyerly and unboring topics all centered around simplifying business ideas. His topics come in three flavors: workplace happiness, marketing clarity, and business awesomeness. Here are some of his current speaking topics:

Workplace Happiness

  • How to Have “Gruntled Employees”
    Disgruntled employees are the ones who end up suing you. So your goal should be to make sure you have “gruntled” employees. Jay will show you the secrets to keeping your employees gruntled.
  • The Riskiest Thing You Can Do at Work with Your Clothes On
    Firing an employee is the most difficult and riskiest event in a manager’s career. Do it wrong and you could be looking at years of litigation. Based on his book Firing at Will, Jay will teach you how to safely do this dangerous task.
  • The Magic of Retained Dignity
    Some companies are beginning to pay attention to new HR metrics to help them manage their workplaces. Jay developed the revolutionary concept of Retained Dignity to help managers and HR professionals focus on lowering the probability of litigation after a firing.
  • Managing Employees Without Timesheets
    The billable-hour business model was invented in 1919, and law firms, accounting firms, and other professionals rely on timesheets to manage their employees. Yet the timesheet is the absolute worst way to measure the value of your employees. Jay teaches you how to trash your timesheets and how to manage your employees without them.
  • Treating Employees Differently
    Employment lawyers and human-resources professionals live by the axiom that you have to treat employees the same. The problem is, when you treat everyone equally you end up treating them all equally badly. Instead, the secret of a successful workplace is to treat your employees differently. Jay will tell you how.
  • Can a Law Firm Be Like Zappos?
  • Online shoe company Zappos is renowned for its corporate culture, where its employees are genuinely excited to be part of the team. But a law firm is very different from a hip and trendy consumer website. How can a law firm’s employees be as excited to work there as Zappos’s people are? Jay shows you how.

  • The World’s Shortest Personnel Handbook
    Many employers spend thousands of dollars each year on detailed personnel handbooks and employee policies. These policies are designed to guard against bad employees. Unfortunately, they also have the effect of driving away good employees. Instead of hyperlegislating the workplace, Jay will tell you about the world’s shortest employee handbook, and how having it can make your business a better place to work.

Marketing Clarity

  • Does Your Marketing Reflect Who You Want To Be?
    Too much marketing and advertising is driven by what the competition is doing, or by what you see in the marketplace. But marketing and advertising are useless if you don’t understand who your company is. To find out, you need to answer one question: “What’s your point?”
  • The Mind-Blowingly Short Social-Media Policy
    As companies struggle to come to terms with modern social media, many of them are creating comprehensive and lengthy policies to protect their trade secrets and customer lists and curb potential abuses. The problem is, most of these policies are stupid. Learn how to send the right messages through social media by sending the right message about social media.

Business Awesomeness

  • The One-Question Test for Your Firm
  • Professional firms spend a fortune on marketing, trying to convince clients that they are experts in their fields. But Jay’s come up with a simple test for whether a professional is truly an expert. The client simply asks: “How much will this cost?” How your firm answers speaks volumes about your expertise.

  • Selling Knowledge, Not Activity
  • The outdated hourly billing model focuses on measuring activity, so firms live under the myth that activity is what they sell. But clients don’t buy activity; they buy knowledge. Jay teaches you to measure — and sell — knowledge instead of activity, giving you the opportunity to increase your firm’s profits.

  • The Great Alternative-Fee Swindle
    Everyone’s talking about “alternative fee arrangements” as the new new thing. But most of the “experts” spend their time talking about a bewildering array of AFAs that turn off clients and firms alike. And nearly all of them still talk about keeping track of your time. Guess what? It doesn’t work that way. Have Jay clear up all that conclusion and tell you about the simplicity of pricing.
  • The Three Essential Secrets to Negotiations Success
    Some say that the definition of a successful negotiation is when both sides come out equally unhappy. Most people find negotiations to be stressful and unnecessarily adversarial. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Learn the three secrets of successful negotiations and apply them in any arena: sales, pricing, legal disputes, contracts, and employment.