I can’t believe I have been practicing law for 25 years! Over that time I have learned a lot about the legal profession. But as much as I know about how to deal with a legal question, my real education was in how to deal with people. I have learned about how to deal with staff and most importantly I have learned and listened to my clients on how to deal with them. I have created a list of Top 5 reasons why my clients tell me they love our firm. When I ask my clients what did you like best about our firm, here are the top reasons I hear over and over!
- “You Listened & Cared”: Nothing is more devastating than to have an attorney who can’t hear you! Oh, they will sit and take down notes, but do they really HEAR YOU? Do they listen to the entire problem and try and look at your whole life holistically? For example: While I am not a psychologist (so I am not advocating pretending to take on that role) I still can recognize extreme emotional hardship after an accident case. When we hear that emotional issues are brewing it is our job to help our client find a person who CAN help them with that emotional issue. We also believe that if you listen to your client they will actually tell you what you need to know to win your case. But you must take the time to listen!
- “You Answered the Questions Asked Quickly”: Yes, we pick up the phone! Yes, we call back the same day! Yes, we listen to the question and answer the question asked! Yes, we take the time to help you understand the process. So many clients have actually broken down and cried when I pick up the phone or call back on a weekend. They are at wit’s end and they need help. They don’t need it on Monday. They need it right then. Our office has systems in place to make sure after hours calls are handled quickly, and true emergencies are taken care of right then. Getting your attorney on the phone is necessity. It should not be a fight to talk to your lawyer. We will call or email you back. We are committed to making sure our clients have the benefit of talking with their lawyer!
- “You Welcomed Me In”: It is amazing how meeting the entire team up-front and a simple New Client Welcome Kit can make clients feel a part of the team. The world is filled with chaos and loneliness. By meeting their legal team (the pre-litigation paralegal, the litigation paralegal, the associate attorney and the senior attorney) we make sure our clients know who is handling their case. We also give our clients a new client folder which includes a significant book of answers to the most common client questions. That gives our clients something tangible to hold onto. Our Welcome Kit includes the firm brochure, a sheet on each practice area, all their necessary contacts at the firm, and a folder to hold the papers they will gather over the course of representation. They know they are a part of our team when they leave the firm.
- “You Kept your Word”: You must never fail to keep a promise to a client. That means setting honest and reasonable expectations right from the start. Some clients come in mad. They want “justice”, but it is more akin to “revenge”. Beware of capitulating to that emotion early in a case. The client will never let it go. Be honest with the client. Explain what you can and cannot do in a legal case. You are not the archangel Michael. You are an attorney trying to help an injured person get as close to whole as possible. Once you have set reasonable expectations make sure you work hard at exceeding them! That way you are always striving to overachieve!
- “You Won!” I hate to brag (ok, maybe I don’t actually hate to brag)- but we win a lot! Our clients get the money they feel they deserve at the end of our cases. I can’t say 100% but easily more than 99% of our clients end their case happy! It is extremely important to recognize that this is not sports betting. This is litigating. Litigating is similar to a contact sport because competing entities are fighting to win. But in litigating the stakes are extremely high, both for the client and the law firm. We can’t stay in business without winning. You can’t maximize the value of your injury case unless you have an attorney who will fight for that win! You absolutely don’t want a lawyer who doesn’t feel a deep need to win. It is your life and your case on the line. Choose attorneys who are proud of the fact that they are crazy competitive by nature. I love the saying “If you show me a good loser, I will show you a loser.” I can’t honestly say I’m completely graceful in defeat. Fortunately I don’t face that emotion too often.
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