CLM Voices: Getting to Know Gene Kissane
Getting to Know Gene Kissane, Partner at Cole Scott Kissane P.A.
By Taylor Smith
What does it take to run the third-largest law firm in Florida; one that has almost 400 attorneys and handles primarily insurance defense matters? Kissane gives us a behind-the-scenes look at what inspires him today and 20 years ago, when he first started the firm.
Kissane’s father was an insurance executive at Continental Insurance Company, where he originally worked in underwriting. However, it was clear that he was a “claims guy” who often spoke at home about the skilled trial lawyers with whom he worked. That admiration for the profession inspired Kissane to become a trial lawyer himself.
“I enjoy interacting with the younger attorneys and watching them grow. Some have gone on to become some of the best attorneys in the state, and that is very rewarding.” Kissane, on the joys of running his own practice
Striving for Success
Kissane says that without fantastic service, no firm will stay in existence. But it has to come with a reasonable price tag so clients not only feel that you are a good lawyer, but also that you are a great partner with whom they want to work.
“Metrics matter, and one that we watch very closely is the lifecycle duration of a file. In the last 12 months, we’ve closed 51 percent of our files in less than 120 days.” Kissane, on staying competitive
Order in the Court
Kissane says it’s important that his firm’s attorneys be able to effectively try cases. He says that if plaintiffs’ lawyers know that CSK attorneys are willing and able to litigate, then it improves the odds that cases will resolve in the way that his clients are seeking.
“Whether it’s doing pro bono work with the less fortunate, or working with charitable causes like Habitat for Humanity, our firm culture is very much about giving back to the community.” Kissane, on the importance of staying humble