Are your clients “raving fans?” If you are not sure, take about an hour and read Raving Fans by Ken Blanchard and Sheldon Bowles. If you are a regular reader, you likely remember I have written about Raving Fans several times. A couple of years ago I wrote: In a Tough Market: Create Raving Fans.
What services or products have made you a raving fan? I have shared many times that I am a raving fan of Ritz Carlton hotels.
I am also a raving fan of Apple. I own three Mac computers, an iPad and an iPhone. When I travel with my MacAir, people ask how I like it. I bet over 100 people have bought one because I am a raving fan.”
While my MacAir is a cool computer, I am a raving fan because of Apple service. I have my own business rep at the Apple store. I can get one-on-one lessons once a week. This extraordinary attention to the customer is what sets Apple apart.
So, what can you learn from the book: Raving Fans?
Decide What the Law Firm/Practice Group Wants
Many law firms remind me of a quote from Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. “One day Alice came to a fork in the road and saw a Cheshire cat in a tree. Which road shall I take? She asked. His response was a question: Where do you want to go? I don’t know, Alice answered. Then, said the cat, it doesn’t matter.”
While most of our clients seem to have no trouble articulating where they want to go, I believe many law firms are like Alice. They have not clearly articulated what they are or want to become.
Define Service from Your Client’s Perspective
Many law firms and practice groups focus on what they do more than they focus on what their clients need. Those firms and practice groups must be among the firms ousted by their clients.
For law firms there are both general things clients want and more specific things. The general things are really pretty simple. They can be understood by the surveys of the corporate counsel. Clients want their outside counsel to understand both the company and its industry.
Interestingly, law firm practice groups are generally based on what the lawyers do: litigation, tax, corporate etc. and not based on industries. Clients want their law firms to be responsive, as defined by the client and they want their lawyers to be innovative in ways that add value and/or reduce costs.
As I have suggested in other blog posts, to learn the more specific things law firms and practice groups need to ask and need to get feedback.
Execute and Deliver Plus 1 Service
Law firms and practice groups get to choose the level of service they will offer their clients. If law firms and practice groups decide what they want to become and define service from their client’s perspective, then they should be able to execute in a way that exceeds their clients’ expectations.