Consider this dichotomy: On the one hand, according to a January, 2020 Gallup Poll, lawyers are ranked 14th on honesty and ethical standards. (Nurses are most trusted for the 18th year in a row).
That’s not so bad. Congressmen were ranked 21st, only beating out car salesmen.
On the other hand the American Film Institute’s number one movie hero for the 20th century is Atticus Finch.
If your client made a movie of your work with them or their company, would you be more like the lawyers in the Gallup poll or more like Atticus? What about other American Film Institute movie heroes? Would you be like them?
When I looked at the American Film Institute’s list of movie heroes, the number four movie hero of all time was a character named Rick from one of the film classics. Rick was not a lawyer, and he was certainly a flawed character, but he did share many Atticus Finch attributes that our clients are seeking. Here are a few I noticed:
- He was competent
- He was confident
- He was a strong individual
- He was a risk taker
- He was compassionate and empathetic
- He helped without even being asked and without expecting anything in return
- He clearly put the interests of others ahead of his own
- He sacrificed
Do you know the movie character? Even if you have never seen the movie, you might be able to guess the title from two of the hero’s famous lines:
We’ll always have Paris.
Here’s looking at you, kid.
“Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine.”
Almost every movie hero has many of the attributes listed above.
As you might imagine, your clients expect you to have most, if not all of those attributes. Think about how you would appear in the movie your client might make of you.
P.S. If you haven’t seen Casablanca, it is worth watching.