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People Skills, Digital Leadership, Empowered Clients

Jackson & Wilson Showcase the Human Side of Law and Business with Cutting-Edge Technology and a Focus on the Exemplary Client Experience

“As lawyers, we have an opportunity to make the world a better place. I encourage everyone to go through their day with that in mind. We enjoy helping people and we enjoy not only making a difference in our local community, but across the world using social media and a digital platform,” says Jon Mitchell “Mitch” Jackson, Senior Partner at Jackson & Wilson, Inc.”

The firm’s other senior partner is Lisa M. Wilson, Jackson’s wife and according to Jackson, “one of the most caring people and brightest and most talented trial lawyers I’ve ever met.” Jackson & Wilson practice areas are personal injury, wrongful death, and business litigation.

Jackson says, “Helping people is what it’s all about. I think when it comes to branding themselves and their practices, too many attorneys get too wrapped up in sharing their degrees and accomplishments as opposed to showing the consumer how they can help. If you want to connect, you’ve got to realize we’re all in this together and let the consumer know that, as one human being to another, we can help each other.”

Rolling the Dice

Jackson grew up on a ranch in Tucson, AZ and the seed to make a difference through a legal career was planted during his high school years. His dad and mom told him if he wanted to make a difference, he’d have to get involved. Fred N. Belman, a neighbor who was a local district attorney, and Jackson would go scuba diving in the Sea of Cortez. During their trips, he listened carefully to Belman’s courtroom stories and realized that his neighbor was someone who was making a difference. After expressing that he wanted to do the same, Belman suggested that becoming an attorney would provide the vehicle.

Jackson says, “I really didn’t know what I was getting myself into. But, with that nudge from Fred, I followed his advice and rolled the dice and went for it. Looking back 30 years later it was the best decision I’ve ever made.”

The first member of his family to attend college, he graduated from the University of Arizona in Tucson with a B.A. in Business Administration. During his college years he waited tables, tended bar and worked the front door at local drinking establishments.

Jackson credits those experiences with teaching him the value of people skills. He says, “I tell young trial lawyers there’s so much more to being successful in court than knowing the evidence code or civil procedure. You must be genuine, trustworthy, and have good people skills to succeed in the courtroom. I think this also applies in business and life.”

Before starting law school, Jackson spent two years working as a front desk clerk and night manager at Caesar’s Tahoe. Although he enjoyed skiing in the winter and sailboarding in the summer, he realized, “that it wasn’t enough for me internally. In other words, I wanted to do more. I wanted to contribute more to society. And I mean that. It’s just in my DNA.”

He walked away from a pay raise, a promotion and the lifestyle of living in a ski resort community. Returning to Tucson, he focused on studying for the LSAT to take his life down a different path. That path led to earning a J.D. from Western State School of Law in California.

“My experience in Lake Tahoe was fantastic, but I wanted to raise the bar and take things to another level, and that’s why I decided to focus on becoming a lawyer. It was one of the best decisions of my life. I met my wife in law school and we’ve enjoyed a very rewarding, and frankly, fun life for the past three decades practicing law and being involved with our community,” Jackson says.

Jumping to Success

He began his law career as a sole practitioner on an extremely limited budget and working out of a conference room owned by another lawyer, a room big enough to hold his entire client base at that time. All his case files were maintained in the back of his car.

Realizing the value of networking, especially to a newcomer to the field, Jackson took a unique approach. His daily schedule included playing basketball most days in Laguna Beach, and in between games, returning calls, and networking. “The more jump shots I hit the more friends I made, and the more friends I made the more referrals I got. That’s how I started off in the mid-eighties. I love people and I just started meeting more and more people and expanding out and eventually, leasing a small office space,” he says.

Expansion continued with the addition of Lisa M. Wilson as a senior partner. Husband-wife teamwork was a tradition for both families. Jackson’s parents worked together at the guest ranch. Wilson’s parents had a dairy distributorship. Teaming up as business partners was a natural step. “Two years after founding the company, Lisa came in with me. She was with a large firm and when we left for our honeymoon she gave notice, took the high road and gave them plenty of time, and when we came back she came in with me. And that’s when we became Jackson & Wilson,” he says.

 

Creating an Exemplary Experience for the Client

“There are a lot of amazing attorneys and outstanding firms in southern California. What makes them good and what makes our firm standout is that we enjoy what we’re doing and our dedication to do our best to make sure our clients’ experience is an exemplary one. If a client wants us to communicate with him or her using text message, or private message on Facebook, or private DMs on Twitter, then that’s the way we’ll communicate with that client,” he says.

He credits much of his firm’s success to maintaining an awareness to the human side of the law. “As human beings we’re here to help, we’re here to assist, we’re here to help our clients fix their problems. And by keeping the focus on that, it’s allowed us to consistently get good results. It’s allowed us to make a difference in the community. It’s allowed us to enjoy the profession of practicing law. Look, I’ve been practicing 30 years. I’m more excited today about getting up, getting to the office and practicing law than ever before. I don’t know many lawyers who feel this way after practicing for three decades. I think it shows that we’re going about things the right way.”

His management philosophy is based on two principles: lead by example and always do the right thing. He says there are no exceptions to that rule. The goal is to constantly, on a day-to-day basis, take action and keep moving forward, realize that mistakes happen, and that it is essential to learn from those mistakes, make the necessary adjustments, and then move on. He adds that the learning the art of delegation is also essential. “If you’re bringing in employees, if you’re building a team the right way, then you’re empowering everyone to do the same and it makes delegation much easier and much more effective.”

Jackson’s personal philosophy is equally simple: out-hustle the other side. When it comes to building a brand, if an attorney or a firm is doing things like everyone else in town, then they’re probably doing things the wrong way. He says, “What I enjoy most about my work, and what I’ve learned over the years, is that if I prepare and out-hustle the other side, I’m usually going to get the results my clients are looking for. That mindset is my success formula. It’s my advantage. I don’t enjoy the paperwork, but I enjoy winning and fixing my clients’ problems, which are a result of the hustle and the hard work.”

Using Technology to Showcase the Human Side

“I enjoy traveling around the country and speaking about marketing, branding and social media. Because of the other experts I meet, I feel like I have my finger on the pulse of evolving technology and the digital world. It’s something I enjoy doing and talking about. The law firms who take advantage of social media and other digital outlets are the ones who will be successful over the long term,” Jackson says.

He recently shared similar thoughts about business development from the stage at the Tony Robbins Business Mastery event and will be speaking about Augmented Reality, Virtual Reality, Mixed Reality, and Artificial Intelligence at the Clio Cloud conference in New Orleans. He believes that over the next five to ten years, these new technologies are going to change everything in business and in the practice of law.

Jackson says, “This is the technology that’s going to change the world as much as the printing press, Internet and smartphones. That’s how powerful ARVRMRAI is going to be. You’re going to see more exponential change over the next five years than you saw over the last 50. If you don’t embrace this technology you’re probably going to become an afterthought.”

For example, in addition to the firm’s website and other social media platforms, Jackson shares his experiences and thoughts revolving around technology at his blog, the Streaming.Lawyer. It’s a platform where he shares much of his social media, digital and live-streaming efforts. “It’s also a place where we try to show our other passions and interests outside the office. We really enjoy doing that. I think more lawyers and more professionals should show their human side. That’s what it’s all about—helping people,” Jackson says.

“I’m a firm believer that you have to design and live a life that works for you. Everyone has ideas, but to find success in law, business and life, you must consistently execute and take action. Along the journey, you also need to put your health first, family and friends second, and then focus on your career. Get this order of priorities mixed up and you’re in for a bumpy ride.

» EDUCATION

  • University of Arizona – Business Administration
  • Western State School of Law – Juris Doctor
  • Member: Local and National Trial Lawyer Organizations

» PRACTICE AREAS

  • Personal Injury
  • Wrongful Death
  • Business (Digital) Litigation

» AWARDS

  • California Litigation Attorney of the Year Award (CLAY Award) – 2013
  • Orange County Trial Lawyer of the Year (OCTLA "Top Gun") – 2009
  • Top "AV" Rating by Martindale-Hubbell | Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers
  • Southern California Super Lawyer
  • AVVO "Excellent" (10 out of 10)
  • Top 50 Social Media Influencers – 2017
  • Mashable's "50 Snapchat Marketing Influencers" – 2016
  • Contributing Consultant: California State Bar's "Effective Introduction of Evidence in California – Chapter 54 Electronic
    and Social Media Evidence" – 2017
  • Contributing Expert: "Shame Nation" by Sue Scheff with the forward by Monica Lewinsky

» CIVIC

  • Fourth generation Rotarian
  • Jackson and Wilson are former Presidents of the Monarch Beach Sunrise Rotary Club and Mitch is the former Interact District Governor

Contact
Jackson & Wilson
23161 Mill Creek Drive, Ste 150
Laguna Hills, CA 92653
949-655-8751
800-661-7044
JacksonandWilson.com
https://Streaming.Lawyer
Social Media: Mitch.Social

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