Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Bring The Gift -- Never be a Wallflower Again

Going to a business mixer can be intimidating, especially if I don't know anyone. "Meeting people I don't know -- who is going to want to meet me!?" "They already have great relationships and don't need to have another lawyer trying to buddy-up with them!" "Who am I kidding... I'm uninteresting and will make a fool of myself."

Man! The voices in my head are vicious! If I allow these internal voices to keep talking I WILL become the next well-dressed wallflower milling about on the borders of the room!

But I've got a secret, and will never be a wall flower again!

The secret is that most of everyone else in the room has the same darned voices saying the same darned things inside their own heads! Amazing! So, "How do I use this secret knowledge?" you ask.

The answer is: to bring the Gift to every networking event. The Gift is knowing there are many people there, listening to the voices in their head, in need of saving. They're crying out for someone to talk to them and I can be their ambassador. Instead of being a wallflower, I seek them out! I walk right up and start a conversation, listen to their story and help them become a part of the event. WOW!

It feels so wonderful to go to every event with a mission -- with a gift to give!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Dress and Etiquette Really Matter for Lawyers

Lawyers have an expectation to uphold -- be different at your own risk!

I had a most wonderful conversation at lunch today with another business development professional for lawyers. We discussed the appearance and demeanor of different lawyers and how that was working for them, or against. It was amazing to us how many attorneys have a total disregard for how they look, the quality of character they project or the social skills that draw people into wanting to know them.

Here is my opinion: Corporate executives stereotype lawyers. It's not fair and it is true. Lawyers need to appear composed, sophisticated, successful and competent in all of the best ways. A lawyer should display good taste in apparel, be a graceful communicator and have impeccable etiquette.

"This is who I am" may work in other professions but lawyers are held to a higher standard. Either meet expectation or suffer consequence. If you have no clue what I am talking about than you need an immediate adjustment.

If you do not have a tailor, get one. If you do not have a coach, find one right now. If you do not know which fork to grab first in a dinner setting, make the effort to figure it out. You are a lawyer! Meet the expectations of your potential clients!

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

What Does Low Hanging Fruit Look Like for Law Firms

It is easy to identify companies I would like to have as clients of my firm -- it is another thing to gain an opportunity to pitch our services. In most cases the companies we target already have counsel performing at least adequately and in many cases, counsel that are taking good care. The only thing that might upset their current relationships is -- change.

Buy-sell, unexpected litigation, rapid growth, new regulation, change in leadership, etc. Instead of pursuing any company, I focus on companies facing change. Change is the moment when executives are most likely to consider new counsel.

Consider this. Instead of going after every company you desire focus only on those in a state of change. It could dramatically change the return on your effort.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Dear Law Firm Marketing Experts,

Please stop resting on the laurels of ten years past and repeating marketing lessons that have been repeated like lyrics a million times before.

I listened in on a conference call this afternoon -- marketing experts talking about performing client surveys. The call was advertised as providing answers for law firm marketers challenged to make client surveys part of their firm culture.

What actually happened was a shoot-from-hip moderated conversation covering "lesson 101" cliches we've all heard before. Things like, "attorneys are challenged to do these things" and "an unhappy client will tell ten others".

Look, at some point "the experts" have to move on and start covering truly rich, deep, specific examples of real, transforming experiences. They need to start relating stories of true movement and stop saying what has been already spoken at every conference or confab many times before.

I make no claim to having any answers, I don't, but legal marketing experts need to WAKE UP and start taking some risks.

At my firm, like any other, we are constantly challenged to do more, be better, produce astounding and create magic. And I so blessed to be in the company of such amazing marketers at my firm....

For all of you "experts" out there, stop being lazy. If you want to teach, take a risk and give us rank and file workers something new to chew on. Challenge me! Create, invigorate and motivate. BE ORIGINAL!

Graphic Artists are Crazy

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