Educate them!

I’m serving as an officer in the ABA Section of Science and Technology Law, and I’ve been on the planning committee for an upcoming conference that will be useful for many readers. So….. 

Please Join Us at the Third Annual Internet of Things National Institute in Washington, DC on May 9-10!

We live in a connected world, where billions of vehicles, buildings, process control devices, wearables, medical devices, and other “smart” objects are wirelessly connecting to and communicating with each other. The “Internet of Things” is raising unprecendented legal and liability issues and becoming one of the hottest new law practice areas.

Visit here to view the program agenda, and register here before the early-bird rate expires.

 


One of my favorite self-care activities is getting a massage. I tend to tighten my shoulders when I’m working intently, and despite stretching, the end of a major project almost always finds me feeling as if there’s a hot spear piercing my left shoulder.  

A friend recently told me about a chain of stores that offer inexpensive massages, and I’ve noticed a proliferation of clinic signs promising slashed prices. I’ve been sticking with my favorite massage therapist because she’s fantastic and I like her tremendously… But those signs kept showing up, and I found myself wondering if perhaps I should check out cheaper massage options and save some money. But I wondered if the massage would be as effective and relaxing. Would I save money, or would I waste it? 

I tell you this story not to discuss my massage habits, but because this is the thought process that your clients may go through when they become aware of another service provider who charges less. It’s human nature, especially when times are tight, to notice and to consider investigating a deal. But we all know that a “deal” isn’t always a deal.  

How can you help your clients distinguish a deal from a sub-optimal service?   

Educate your clients. 
While I was mulling massage options, I received a newsletter from my favorite spa that offered a series of questions to ask a reduced-price competitor, inquiring about important massage aspects such as the training/experience of the therapists and the atmosphere in which the services are performed. The questions qualify the preferred provider – in this instance, the spa – as the ideal, but they’d also allow me to vet competitors to see whether another option might be a good deal.

WHAT? Tell potential clients that someone else is offering a good deal? Why would you do that? When you give candid information that may cut against your economic interest, clients recognize it, and it tends to raise your credibility.  When your credibility goes up, it becomes more likely that they’ll trust you when you tell them that in situation A, it’s fine to use a cut-rate provider, but in situation B, they’ll come out ahead by paying more and working with you. And when you gain client trust, all manner of good things begin to happen.

To educate your clients and potential client market in this way, take these steps:

  1. Who are your competitors? Who offers the same services to meet the same needs (your direct competitors) and who offers different service to meet the same needs (your indirect competitors)? To continue the massage example, other massage therapists are the spa’s direct competitors. Yoga studios, gyms, aromatherapy solutions, and many other modalities can credibly claim to help with physical tension that results from stress, and those other service providers are indirect competitors.  

  2. How are you different from your direct competitors? Why is massage better than yoga for addressing stress-induced tightness and pain? Why should a business planning to incorporate hire you rather than using LegalZoom?  

  3. Once you’ve identified what sets you apart, decide how you can communicate that to your potential clients.  Maybe it’s a newsletter, like my favorite spa sent. Or you might write an article that compares and contrasts your services with others.  Perhaps you’ll weave it into conversation.

However you communicate your distinguishing factors, make sure you provide both emotional and rational distinctions. You have more experience (rational), which means that you can give clear guidance about a convoluted situation (emotional). Because you’ve been through an experience like your client’s (emotional), you’re able to identify the steps that will have the biggest impact for your client (rational).

Instead of worrying about competition, educate your clients and turn obstacles into opportunity.
  

Meeting Client Expectations… Or Not.

One of the top client complaints received by bar associations across the country has to do with lawyers’ failure to return telephone calls.  I haven’t seen statistics, but I suspect that clients also complain about lawyers who fail to answer email.  Clients expect that their lawyer will communicate with them in a timely manner, and on the surface, just about all lawyers agree.  And the same is true for other service providers, including those who don’t have a professional oversight board of some sort.

But we’ve all had that annoying client.  You know, the one who is constantly on the phone or sending yet another email with an unnecessary question or comment.  The one who is so insistent on knowing when a task will be completed that it may feel like you won’t have time to do the work unless you “ignore” the client for a while.  And even if you don’t have one of those clients, you’re probably still swimming in telephone calls and emails – we all are these days.

So, how do you deal with client expectations about communications?  If you meet every expectation, you’ll add dramatically to your workload and you may worry that your clients will dictate how you operate your business; if you don’t meet expectations, you may find yourself on the wrong end of a complaint, or you may discover that dissatisfied clients are telling their friends and colleagues about your [perceived] poor service.

Have a conversation with your clients about communications at the time of engagement.  The most dangerous expectations are those that go unexpressed.  If, for example, a client is expecting a weekly check-in and you don’t realize that, it’s probably a safe bet that the client will quickly feel dissatisfied and either start clamoring for attention or silently smoldering.  If you ask what the client expects, you’ll have an opportunity to meet that expectation.

And, you may choose not to meet the client’s expectations.  When there’s nothing pressing, for instance, you may not communicate with the client for some period of time.  If you bill based on time, unnecessary communications will run up your client’s bill (perhaps creating greater dissatisfaction), and if you use a flat fee arrangement, unnecessary communications can eviscerate your profit.

When you discuss expectations, you can respond to what your client expects by sharing your own expectations.  Some clients will be satisfied when they understand when and why you communicate (especially if you agree to communicate in the manner your client prefers), some may negotiate with you in some way, and some may choose not to hire you.  Regardless of the outcome, both of you will come out ahead for having had the conversation.

“Welcome!”


I’m serving as an officer in the ABA Section of Science and Technology Law, and I’ve been on the planning committee for an upcoming conference that will be useful for many readers. So…..

Please Join Us at the Third Annual Internet of Things National Institute in Washington, DC on May 9-10!
We live in a connected world, where billions of vehicles, buildings, process control devices, wearables, medical devices, and other “smart” objects are wirelessly connecting to and communicating with each other. The “Internet of Things” is raising unprecendented legal and liability issues and becoming one of the hottest new law practice areas.
 
Register for the Internet of Things National Institute to:

  • Gain insights and practical guidance on the latest legal, legislative, regulatory and liability issues of the IoT transformation.
  • Explore IoT hot topics: privacy, cybersecurity, litigation, artificial intelligence, healthcare, ethics and more.

Receive 2 days of CLE Credit while attending the program that previous attendees have called “magical,” “eye-opening,” with “rock star” speakers, and overall “a grand slam.”

Who Should Attend:
 Lawyers (litigation, corporate, IT, IP, health law, etc.), regulators, legislators, policymakers, developers, manufacturers, service providers, marketers, business executives, privacy and security professionals, academics and students.

Visit here to view the program agenda, and register here before the early-bird rate expires.


What greeting do your clients receive when they contact your office?  Do clients feel that they’re welcome?  Or are they ever left with the impression that they’re interrupting something more important?

How your staff handles client contact (or how you handle it, if your practice doesn’t include staff members) will have a significant, though probably unspoken, impact on your client engagements.  What’s more, whoever answers the telephone and greets visitors constitutes the first line of your marketing team, since satisfying current clients may lead to repeat business and referrals.

We so easily fall into the trap of thinking that lawyers provide client service and that receptionists, legal assistants, secretaries, and other staff members provide administrative support that really doesn’t constitute client service.  While that may be true on one level, it’s wise to consider how much contact the average client has with your staff as opposed to with you.  Unless you’re a sole practitioner without an assistant, chances are reasonably good that the first person your client speaks with is a staff member.  The client will then engage with you with that first impression in mind.

It’s easy to identify and weed out those who deliver obviously unacceptable client contact.  The example that comes to mind is one I overheard a few years ago while waiting for a colleague to get off a call so we could talk: “Well, [Mr. Smith], I know you think you’re [lawyer’s] only client, but you aren’t!”  Fortunately, someone who would make a comment like that is generally either retrained or fired with haste.

But what about the subtle effects of less-offensive but thoughtless behavior?  Have you ever stepped back to observe how non-attorney staff in your office interacts with your clients?

Take a lesson from an Atlanta law firm receptionist who turns visitors into welcome guests simply by greeting each visitor as if he matters.  Janette engages every person who walked in.  She knows returning clients, asks how their travel have been, and makes them feel welcome.  When she meet someone new, she exchanges a few comments with them — not the kind of chatter that can annoy someone already on edge, just some niceties that pave the way for further conversation if the visitor so desires.  Every person who walks in is greeted, made welcome, and appreciated.

Here are a few areas to consider as you question what your staff contributes to client relations:

  • Does the receptionist greet visitors with a smile and a friendly word? Especially in the last few years, many staff members have been asked to do more work with fewer resources, and stress has increased.  It’s important not to allow that stress to reach the client.
  • How are telephones answered? Answering by barking out a business name may be efficient, but it’s hardly welcoming.
  • Are clients treated as valued guests and recognized as individuals rather than being lumped together as interchangeable units whose primary characteristic is willingness to pay your invoice?
  • Are basic courtesies observed in communications? For example, if emailing an invoice, is a cover note included thanking the client for his or her business?
  • Do you introduce clients to your staff members, or are staff members simply nameless, faceless people who interact with clients when you’re unavailable? A simple introduction can transform a staff member from being regarded as only a gatekeeper to being viewed as a valuable resource.

Notice what’s happening when your clients and potential clients interact with your staff.    If it’s a negative contribution, how can you help to create a shift?  And if it’s a positive contribution, do you acknowledge and reward it?

Listen up!

Business is the greatest personal development tool that exists. The moment you take responsibility for your work and for generating and serving clients, you become your own best asset.  That’s why you must invest in yourself.  If you don’t grow, your business won’t grow.  Give that some thought the next time you’re faced with an opportunity that will move you forward and you decide to let it pass because you “can’t afford” it.

To thrive in business you must master many different skills and attitudes, one of which is the ability to relate well with others.  Communication skills are especially important in business development as well, because without knowing what a client is thinking about and what the client’s objectives are, it’s impossible to know whether and how your professional skills can help that client.  Rather than focusing on what you seek to communicate to the client, though, begin by letting the client speak.

Expansive questions allow the client to guide the conversation as she prefers, and asking follow-up questions will draw out the necessary information.  Depending on the context, the following questions serve as good conversation-starting questions:

  • What are your ultimate objectives here?
  • How does this matter fit into the broader business context?
  • What are you most concerned about here?
  • How long has this problem been going on?
  • What do you need from this situation, and what would you like?
  • What are the biggest obstacles you see?
  • How will it impact your life and your business to solve this problem?

Don’t allow yourself to get caught up in asking a “brilliant” question or a question that reveals how much you know.  Aim instead for open-ended questions that focus on the matter at hand and provide space for a client to move into broader business concerns.

Follow-up questions can be as simple as:

  • Tell me more?
  • What else should I know?
  • What’s an example of ___?

Your goal is to get the facts and concerns that the client holds and to draw out as much information as possible.  Simple questions are usually best.

But asking simple, open-ended questions isn’t enough.

It’s human nature, especially when we want to appear knowledgeable, to listen with half-attention while planning the next thing we might say.  Half-listening is almost more dangerous than not asking questions, because if information is conveyed and you ignore it, the client will feel disregarded — poor grounding for any relationship.

Instead, listen deeply to your client.  What is he really saying?  Do his words, tone of voice, and body language match?  If not, what question can you ask to clear up the conflict without putting the client on the defensive?  It’s important too to listen beyond what’s said, to gain an appreciation for what’s unsaid and what context is being shared.

Two exercises to strengthen client communications

 Start by noticing how much you talk in a conversation.  The goal when you talk with a potential client or are deepening your relationship with a current client is to talk for only 20-40% of a conversation.  To draw out your client, ask questions only for the first part of the conversation, until you understand the client’s concerns and goals.

To strengthen your listening skills, insert a few seconds’ pause before you speak.  The pause shows that you are absorbing what’s been said, and it allows you just to listen without needing to plan a response until you’ve heard everything the other person intends to say.

Incidentally, although these skills are critical for client service, you can also use them to strengthen relationships with your colleagues and in your personal life.  Once you start to notice the pattern of conversational give and take, you’ll probably notice how eager many people are to talk rather than to listen.  Notice the effect when you listen deeply and probe gently to find out what really matters to your conversational partner.

Your assignment this week: listen to your clients and potential clients.  Deeply.  If you know listening without interrupting is a challenge for you, you might even train yourself by holding a pen between your lips while you’re on the telephone.  (I wouldn’t recommend this in a face-to-face meeting!)  When you go to remove the pen, be sure it’s time for you to speak.  If not, pat yourself on the back, and keep on listenin’.

Silence May Not Mean Satisfaction

You’ve probably heard it before: it’s much easier to source new business from an existing client than from a non-client. 

You may also know that many clients judge their experience based largely on the day-to-day interactions between you – how well you serve the client, in other words.  Studies show that clients unhappy with the service they receive will not necessarily share that displeasure with you unless it becomes so pronounced that they’re ready to discontinue the relationship and hire someone else instead.  That’s the wrong time to learn that your client is dissatisfied: it’s usually too late to correct the problem and save the relationship.

Last week’s travel reinforced each of those points and, by analogy, provided some insight into what goes right and what can go wrong with client relationships.

Thanks to all the travel I do, I’m a platinum member with Delta.  Some months ago, I had to fly another airline between LA and San Francisco, and it was an eye-opening experience.  It was all about customer service:

  • When I checked in, the agent asked how I was and looked at me while I answered.  The agent chatted with me as he quickly and accurately checked me in and printed my ticket.  He answered my several questions with humor and good information.  This is, unfortunately, not a common experience for me while traveling.
  • Boarding was fast and easy, the seats were comfortable, and the flight was on time despite a late take-off.
  • The flight attendant was pleasant and helpful.
  • My luggage arrived, and it did so quickly.  (Unfortunately, I now mentally bid farewell to my belongings when I have to check a bag, having had two bags delayed for days and one permanently lost.)

Both airlines have always met the key objective of getting me to my ticketed destination safely.   I like Delta (at least, I’m not terribly dissatisfied with Delta) and yet my short trip with Virgin America made me ready to consider choosing to fly with them when I have that option.  And I noticed the differences highlighted above when I next flew on Delta.  It would be a stretch to say I’m now a customer by convenience rather than loyalty, but it would be completely accurate to say that if the circumstances were right, I could be wooed away by another airline.

Could your clients be wooed away?  Have you recently reviewed your client service standards (with help from your staff, if appropriate) to be sure that your clients receive what they need from you?  A few common areas to consider:

  • How quickly do you return telephone calls and answer emails?
  • Do your clients know the people in your business with whom they may need to talk?  An introduction can help clients feel comfortable talking with others; without one, they may feel foisted off or that they aren’t important enough to talk with you directly.
  • Do you make clients welcome and comfortable when they visit your office?
  • Do you communicate with the frequency and in the mode your clients prefer?

These are just a few examples of areas to consider when you’re evaluating your client service.  This week, take a fresh look at opportunities to serve your clients more effectively.  You might even consider asking a few clients how satisfied they are.  (Use an open-ended question like, “Janice, I’d like to make it as easy as possible for you to work with us.  Is there anything I or my staff could do to provide you with better service?”)  Don’t assume that your clients would let you know if they were dissatisfied.

Acknowledge all of the feedback you receive from clients.  While you may be unable to incorporate every suggestion, failing to acknowledge your clients’ responses may deal a fatal blow to your relationship.  And if you can’t incorporate a suggestion, consider explaining why and making an alternative proposal to meet the client’s concern.

Client care: the good, the bad, and the just plain ugly

Studies show that happy clients tell very few of their friends about great client care experiences, while unhappy clients tell (on average) seven other people about problems they experienced.  I’d like to share three client stories that I’ve labeled the good, the bad, and the just plain ugly, each with lessons you can learn about how to treat your clients.

The good:  Good Measure Meals

I’ve previously shared how much I love Good Measure Meals, a service that provides fresh packaged meals that are healthy and taste great.  What I haven’t shared until today is that their customer service makes me even happier than their meals.  When I was unexpectedly out of town for a few days and missed a meal pick-up, Phil sent an email to see if I was ok and to inquire whether I was having any problems with the meals.  When I switched from meal pick-up to delivery one week and mentioned that I’d switch back the next week, Harmony told me that she’d change it back for me, and she called me to let me know that she’d done so.  And when my monthly plan was up for renewal, Harmony again reached out to ask if I wanted to make any changes before the plan renewed.

What can you learn from Good Measure Meals?  Be proactive with your clients.  Look for ways to make it even easier to work with you.  And when you tell a client you’ll do something, do it.

The bad: Unnamed doctor’s office

I had a bad experience in a doctor’s office a few weeks ago. I arrived around 8:25 for an 8:30 appointment and happened to take a seat in the waiting room with a view through the receptionist’s seating area straight through to a back hallway.  While I waited (and watched the minutes tick by), I observed an animated conversation between two members of the doctors’ staff.  The conversation seemed to center on a lampshade that one woman was holding, and it went on for about 15 minutes.  (I remember because I was puzzled how a conversation about a lampshade could last that long, but I digress.)

Imagine my surprise when I was finally called for my appointment around 8:50 – by “Kate,” the woman who’d been talking lampshades.  What did I learn?  That Kate had no regard for my schedule and put interior decorating ahead of patients.  In fact, because the lampshade was on a table in the office I was directed to, I casually mentioned it, only to learn that Kate had purchased the lampshade for her apartment that morning.    And the apology for the delay?  Nonexistent.  I’ve been a patient in this practice for more than thirty years (seeing first the father, then the son), but I won’t be back.

What can you learn from this doctor’s office?  Value your clients’ time.  That means not only being on time for appointments (or apologizing when you’re unavoidably delayed), but also leaving clients sufficient time to review work product, to ask questions, and so on.

The ugly: Unnamed law firm

I recently heard a story that blew my mind.  Short version: a firm represented a client in a divorce.  About two months after the matter was concluded, the client received an invoice for fees incorrectly posted to her file, and as a part of clearing that up, the client requested the return of remaining escrow and trust funds.  A month went by; no funds received.  The client inquired again.  About a week later, she received checks from the firm, addressed in her married name, even though the firm had drafted the final order that (among other things) restored her maiden name.  The client shared that although she had used her maiden name exclusively since contacting the firm, the firm used her married name instead and she didn’t address it because it seemed so petty.  Asked how the rest of the representation went, she snorted and responded, “Well, aside from the fact that my own lawyer didn’t know my name, I suppose it wasn’t bad.”

What can you learn from this law firm?  The obvious answer: use your client’s name and get it right.  Don’t ever put your client in the position of needing to correct or to overlook something so basic.  The deeper lesson is that it’s important to let your client know that you’re paying attention to details.  Although the use of the wrong name didn’t affect the client’s representation, it did make her wonder what other details the firm might be ignoring.  You must not only represent your client well, you must also create the perception that you’re doing so, especially in matters in which your client is unable to judge the merits of the work you’re doing.

The bottom line

We can all ignore the “niceties” of working with clients, focusing instead on the heart of the representation, which is the legal work.  However, your clients will notice everything, and they may evaluate the client service you offer more thoroughly than the legal service.  Switch your way of thinking: if your legal service is the meat of the representation, client service is the bread that holds together the engagement sandwich.

And why does this matter?  Clients are at the heart of your practice.  If you’re seeking to become your clients’ trusted advisor, or to receive referrals from your clients, you must focus on client service. 

Two quotes to hammer this point home:

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

  • Maya Angelou

“Nobody cares how much you know, until they know how much you care.”

  • Theodore Roosevelt

Do you need a CRM?

Relationship development is a key part of any business development initiative. That’s why we put so much effort into meeting new people, getting to know them, and following up with them over time. But how do you gather and track the relevant must-know information about your contacts?

Enter the CRM: the Client (or Customer) Relationship Management system.

(One prefatory note for the rest of this conversation: if you’re working in a larger firm, you may have access to the firm’s CRM and consider that sufficient for your purposes. Before you reach that conclusion, find out how easily you will be able to extract your contacts’ information should you leave the firm. If it’s at all difficult, given the reality of today’s professional world, don’t rely exclusively on the firm’s system.)

A CRM is most often software (local or in the cloud) that organizes contacts and information about them, but it need not be highly technology-driven. Some people successfully use spreadsheets, Outlook, Evernote, or even a Word file. CRM software offers functional advantages.

Here’s a list of features and attributes your CRM system should include:

  • The system must be accessible from wherever you are.
  • The system must be secure.
  • The system must be a centralized and easy-to-update repository for contact data, including address, email, and telephone as well as business and personal interests.
  • The data within the system must be sortable (so you can identify people who are located in a city before you visit, for example).
  • The system should include a tickler function to prompt you to follow up with clients and contacts on the schedule you define.
  • The system should track your communications so you can see when you last spoke with a contact and what you discussed.
  • The system should allow for easy import and export of your data.
  • Optionally, the system may save a library of resources you can use for follow-up contacts.
  • Optionally, the system may include some automation to streamline your efforts.

Two of my favorite CRMs for small firms or for individual use are Contactually and Less Annoying CRM.

Why might you not want to use a CRM? If you won’t keep it updated, a CRM may do you more harm than good. Otherwise, a CRM is a good investment to facilitate building your network.

Join your clients’ team

Don’t you love it when someone else is genuinely interested in your success? We all do. And we all know when interest is genuine, as opposed to when it’s self-motivated and faked. Genuine interest is tremendously appealing, while self-serving is off-putting and even alienating.

Are you interested in your clients’ success? You don’t have to tell anyone, but answer honestly. Depending on your practice, that interest could mean anything from a years-long involvement at the most intimate business levels to a deep interest in a limited aspect of your clients’ experience that’s followed with well wishes, a farewell, and rare-to-occasional follow-up contact. If your answer is lukewarm, that’s a sign that something is out of alignment, and it deserves attention.

Assuming your answer is yes, you are interested in your clients’ success, the question becomes, how do you show your clients that you’re interested in them? When interest is genuine, it tends to flow naturally, but because life is busy, you’ll likely find it helpful to come up with some ways that you can demonstrate that interest. A few examples:

  • Use your clients’ services and products whenever possible. Even if your representation is not business-related, patronize your clients. One lawyer I know makes a special effort to host lunches at a client’s restaurant. Another of his former clients is also his insurance agent, and he purchases gifts from another client’s yoga studio. You might question how much this matters, but imagine how you would feel if you discovered your lawyer hosted a staff luncheon at other restaurants in town but not yours.
  • Where appropriate, promote your clients’ business to others. The lawyer I mentioned in the previous example does this each time he brings someone to his client’s restaurant or send out a gift from his client’s yoga studio. That’s a win/win—even more so if it’s appropriate to mention the client connection.
  • Look for opportunities to provide extra value to your clients. This might be business-related, but it doesn’t have to be. Anything from identifying a trend that might benefit your client to recommending an accountant or contractor counts. You know all those recommendations to circulate useful articles you read? That’s another example, when done well. The measure is what your client will find valuable.
  • Watch for news about your clients, and respond appropriately. If you have a low-volume practice, place Google Alerts on all of your clients; if not, place Alerts on a selected number of high-priority clients. (Either way, be sure that the results are filtered or sent to a non-primary email address.) Celebrate good news, offer condolences, or extend a helping hand.
  • Communicate. The number one complaint about lawyers is the lack of timely communication, and knowing what matters to your clients and when and how to convey that is both a professional responsibility and a way to demonstrate your interest in your clients.

These are just a few examples of how you can let your actions show your interest in your clients. The best methods, of course, are the ones that are most genuine for you and the ones that have the most positive impact on your clients. When you act from genuine and appropriate interest in your clients’ business and personal success, you join your clients’ team. That tends to create client satisfaction (maybe even client delight), recurring business, and referrals, and it also tends to become an enjoyable extension of your practice.

Client service ideas that really work

Three key words in building a strong practice: satisfaction, service, and value. Get these right, and chances are pretty decent that you’ll see repeat business (where feasible) and referrals. Get them wrong, and you may not like what you see.

The blog post 7 Good Customer Service Ideas That Work offers insight into how to get things right when it comes to the service you provide clients and ensuring that they’re satisfied with that service. My favorite points are:

  1. Provide an effortless experience: consider at every step how you can simplify every aspect of working with you so that it’s effortless (or as close to so as possible) for your clients. Examples might include providing checklists and clear directions to help your client gather necessary information or documents relevant to the matter you’re handle or including directions to your office and a link to Google Maps on your website. The less your client has to work to work with you, the better.
  2. Be kind! Inject small, meaningful gestures as you interact with your clients. Imagine the impression you’d make if the CEO of a snack company came to visit your office and found a refreshment station with water, coffee, fruit, and the snacks manufactured by the company. The same station would be nice for other clients as well, especially if you offered a cold bottle of water as they were leaving on a hot day. Grand gestures are not required; thoughtful ones are.
  3. Remember, “you don’t close a sale, you open a relationship.” In other words, “[o]nce your [client] has come on board, make sure you really look after them.” This is, perhaps, nowhere more important than when you have introduced your client to a colleague who will be handling a new matter outside your area of practice.

The post has four other points that are worth checking out. Even more importantly, ask yourself: what can you do to improve your client service in a way that increases your clients’ satisfaction and the value they receive?