Most lawyers are unhappy – studies show it’s one of the most unhappy professions in the U.S.
The fundamental flaw is that, most lawyers mistakenly believe the key to a successful practice is simply getting more clients.
Seems practical – but it’s not. Let me help you unravel why this mindset is such a grave mistake.
Think about this…
Imagine everything in your practice stays the same. You keep serving clients as you always have. Let’s say you even get more clients – just like the ones you’re serving right now.
You keep trudging along with either no support from a team, or with a team that seems to weigh you down more than it actually helps. You continue meeting with people who don’t end up hiring you and don’t appreciate your time. You keep networking with little or no results. The clients you do serve often don’t pay their bills on time and rarely appreciate what you do.
Now, imagine adding MORE clients into that mix.
What happens? MORE WORK, MORE HOURS, and MORE TIME. Am I right?
Are you thinking, “I hear you… but what about MORE MONEY? More clients should equal more money.”
Well, that’s also a false belief. When you’re attracting the wrong clients at low rates, your expenses get out of control fast (trust me… I know – I’ve been there!).
Satisfaction plummets, stress increases and money flies out the door without sustainable systems in place. And here you are – stuck in a law practice that makes you miserable.
Unless you change your Client Engagement System and how you serve those clients.
In order to have a life and law practice you love, you can’t just focus on getting more clients and serving them using your current practice model. You’ll just be digging yourself into a deeper hole, which you’ll eventually need to escape.
Did I mention I’ve been there?
In order to engage clients and serve them in a more sustainable way, there are a few simple principles you must keep in mind:
Always Qualify. From the very first time a new prospect contacts you, qualify them as a real client. Do everything you can to avoid wasting time with prospects who are not ready to engage your services. There are a few ways to do that, including your initial phone script and how you structure and schedule your initial meetings. With a great pre-qualification process, you will find that you become far more attractive to your prospects, not less.
No More Free Consultations. Stop offering Free Consultations!!! These seemingly generous offers attract price shoppers and eat up your precious time. Instead, structure initial meetings with prospects who obviously value your time and lead them to making a clear, informed decision to engage you. I suggest pre-framing the initial meeting with a pre-scripted intake process, a well-constructed, shock-and-awe-style pre-meeting package and an initial meeting that has a specific value to the people you are here to serve. One note: you may still meet with people for free, but it won’t be a free initial consultation — it’ll be a meeting they value and look forward to attending.
(By the way, it’s called a shock-and-awe package because they are shocked and awed in the best way possible when they receive your pre-meeting materials, immediately setting you apart from every other lawyer they meet.)
Offer an Attractive Outcome – Not an Hourly Rate. Stop quoting hourly fees and sending out invoices. Instead, offer packages tied to specific outcomes and collect payment upfront. This allows you to charge higher fees (fees that empower your prospects to choose when you use our initial meeting scripted structure) without resorting to sleazy sales tactics.
Does all this sound complicated? It’s not once you create a Client Engagement System customized for your own office. And it’s far less complicated than the way you are currently operating – losing clients and income on the daily because you don’t have a sustainable system.
I’ll be honest, it cost me $12,500 to hire a team of consultants to help me create my Client Engagement System, but it paid for itself the first time I used it. Once I had it in place, I was able to build a million dollar a year law practice, all while only going into the office 3-4 days a week.
Are you ready to create a law practice that supports your life rather than draining it?