Shocking Advice: You Should “Date” Your Clients
Dear Subscriber & Friend,
I want you to date your clients. Every single one.
No, I’m not asking you to do anything unethical or untoward. Nor do I want you to cheat on your spouse or significant other. I’d be nuts for suggesting that.
Rather, I want you to treat your clients the same way you treat someone you’re dating or really care about.
When you date someone who means the world to you, you are a different person. Your senses and emotions are heightened… you actually listen to what the other person says instead of doing a great job faking it (we’ve all been there!). You act in a way that surprises even… YOU.
You’ll notice yourself doing any number of things, including:
1. You’re very sensitive to your date’s needs.
2. You’re highly responsive to their requests.
3. You anticipate their wants, sometimes before they utter a word.
4. You do everything in your power to make them happy.
5. You go the extra mile to make sure they’re content.
6. You worry about their safety.
7. You are concerned about their health and welfare.
8. You are committed to them.
9. You worry about upsetting them.
10. You call them sometimes just to say hello and see how they’re doing.
I remember when I was first dating my wife — over 20 years ago — I would make her call me as soon as she arrived home after a late night. I was concerned about her safety.
I also remember one time while we were out to dinner she stubbed her toe on the bottom of the table. I was so concerned, I wanted to rush her to the ER. She laughed at how silly I was being. I didn’t think I was being silly. I just didn’t want her to experience any kind of discomfort.
So Why Am I Telling You All This?
The fact is, your clients are the most important people in your professional life. At least they should be — you should see them in that light.
Let me ask you this question: when was the last time you called your client right after your initial consultation as part of your intake “process”?
Probably never, right?
The reason you should call all your clients after the initial consultation is to reinforce the appointment:
-To tell them it was really great to meet them… to see if they have additional questions… and to show them how truly committed you are to getting them the best outcome possible.
-Or maybe you’ll call to make sure all the directions/advice you gave them were clear…
-Or maybe you’ll call to remind them of a “private” phone number/email address they can use to reach you…
-Or maybe you’ll call to let them know the name of your assistant who will be helping you on their case…
-Or you might call for a million other reasons.
My point is, clients are human beings. They have emotions and desires and react positively when you treat them in that way. Treat your clients like you’re dating them. Show them genuine care, concern, affection (within limits), interest, admiration, devotion and enthusiasm.
Why Do All This?
It is actually to your advantage to use the “dating” approach with your clients. Do it because it’s the right thing to do. But also do it because:
1. Your clients deserve it. They should receive the absolute BEST service from you. You want to be known for that.
2. It will make you a better lawyer. You will be much more in tune with what’s going on with your client, their circumstances and situation. This will make you better equipped to represent them.
3. You will have happier, more satisfied clients. Happy clients = happy referrals.
4. It will absolutely STUN your clients. I can assure, the vast majority of clients have never had any lawyer give them such care and attention (again, another key to referrals).
5. It reduces the possibility of a Bar complaint. Clients are much more forgiving of a lawyer who they see as a true friend and confidant — and someone who has shown such great interest in their case and well being.
Putting It All In Perspective…
Think about this: when was the last time you went to the dentist and then received a phone call from him or her a few hours later to check up on you? Can you imagine your dentist saying, “I know you left my office only 3 hours ago, but I wanted to make sure you weren’t having any problems with your filling. Do you feel OK? Are you having any discomfort? Can I do anything to help?”
It would shock the pants off of you, wouldn’t it? Sure, but you would become the world’s biggest cheerleader for this dentist, right? You would tell every single person you knew about this amazing doc who really cares.
And, by the way, you don’t need to call only after the initial consultation. You can also call while the case is in progress… or after it concludes.
Now I know, many lawyers will probably read everything I just wrote and dismiss it due to “lack of time.” But just remember, you might not have the time now, but your biggest competitor will MAKE the time — and then you’ll have all the time of the world when he has all your clients.
What to Do Now…
Implement a new policy in your office that all your clients are incredibly special human beings that you truly care about. Make it a point to call every single client after their initial consultation — preferably the same day. Then monitor how impressed and shocked they will be. It will truly amaze you. At the very least, try it for one month and see.
And once you start seeing positive results, I want you to send me an email telling me how wonderful your clients think you are (then I’ll take it as a “vicarious compliment).