Client development is all about being found when a client needs a lawyer and all about building trust based relationships.
If you want to start building a reputation and building relationships with clients focus on five important points. I know, I’ve made all of these points many times over the last 11 years. But, maybe I have not made them this succinctly.
- Client development is not about “selling.” It’s all about positioning yourself to be found when your clients need a lawyer, and then providing exceptional service.
- You will not develop client relationships merely by being a highly skilled lawyer and doing quality work. It is a necessity but only a starting point. Being a highly skilled lawyer is merely the price you pay to get in the game.
- Client development is not about what you do, it’s about what your clients need. Find ways to learn what they need and put the work you do in that context.
- Strive to differentiate yourself from your competitors. One way is to anticipate a potential problem or opportunity before other lawyers see it.
- Better yet, identify and provide solutions to problems before the client realizes there is a problem. That will do more to build a lasting relationship than almost anything you can do.