“This book tells you all you need to know about how to get on.” The Times

“Relatively few books have been written with assistant solicitors in mind, about how to succeed at the business of being a lawyer… fewer still have devised a programme for so doing that runs alongside a book. This book does both.”Law Society (The Law Management Section)

5 star rating HR Magazine

The Big 3 (brand, business & leadership) Blog

Cutting costs is not the key

Since I am away on holiday (again! [a perk of no longer practicing!]) I hadn’t planned on writing a post today. But then I received Seth Godin’s blog, which contains a timely message for most lawyers and law firms at the moment, with everyone relentlessly focusing on cost cutting. Seth says (and I agree with him) that cutting costs will inevitably just make you less competitive in the long run. If clients can afford to pay, they want to pay for spectacular service. (For more details, check out Seth’s blog.)

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Business development 101

The most basic rule of business development is something lawyers often forget. It’s this: tragic as it may seem, clients don’t care about what you do. Instead, they stubbornly persist in caring about their own problems and needs. (Very strange (not!), but true . . . )

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Know your client's business

I was giving a seminar to a group of IT lawyers within a prominent firm when—as a former IT lawyer myself—I began discussing some business development strategies allowing such lawyers to involve themselves more, both within the industry and within their own client base. Shockingly, it became clear to me that most of these lawyers were very adept at the “law” but quite clueless about IT and the business of technology. I couldn’t help comparing their attitude to mine, when I was in their position.

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What networking ISN’T

networkingAfter writing about the importance of workplace conversational skills in my last blog, I recently found myself attending an event hosted by a prominent law firm. Of course, I can’t kid myself that I was the intended audience for this festivity—in my current capacity, I am neither a client nor a potential client, and this “event” was put on solely with the intent of attracting work. But the friend I was with is a potential client, and one whom they would love to get work from….

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Listening can be more important than having a solution

listeningAs lawyers, it’s absolutely essential that we meet our clients’ needs and desires. This should be obvious, but all too often lawyers forget to think about what the client really wants. Here’s a classic example: the general counsel of a large organization told me yesterday over lunch about a meeting she’d had the day before with her (previously!) favored law firm for a certain project. Apparently they began their pitch by telling her how the project would be run and who would run it, without displaying the smallest understanding of the in-house team, or, more importantly, the in-house politics that would have to be dealt with during the course of the deal. Their proposal was disappointing because they had failed to take this information into account.

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