Client Service: What would make you leave?

This morning, Nancy Myrland wrote an excellent blog post on one of the most important questions you should be asking your clients, both new clients and long-term clients: 

What can I do to keep you as a client for the long haul?"

Nancy must be reading my mind again, because I have "client service" down as the subject to focus on for today's post.  Her post got me thinking about the counter-question to this one, which is "What would make you leave?" 

Clearly, finding out the reasons that a client would stay with you and your firm long term is essential - you want to be doing the things that make your clients happy, and what better way to find out what those are than to ask them? 

But I'd argue that almost as important is finding out what might make a client leave


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Two for Tuesdays: Networking Follow-Up

For today's Two for Tuesdays, I want to look at two tips for following up after a networking event.  Finding the right event, with the right audience, and then meeting the right people are all essential parts to successful networking.  But it doesn't matter if you meet a handful of great people at an event if you never speak to them again - the key is in the follow up. 

Tip One: Ask a Question

This tip comes from a great post on Life Hacker that suggests just that - follow up meeting a new person by asking them a question (which you've jotted down on their business card).  The reason is two-fold: 

  • First, it shows that you were really concentrating on what they were saying - as long as the question is relevant to them. It sets you apart as a good listener, and shows that you value building the relationship, and not just the number of contacts you have. It's important to make sure that the question is a genuine one, and not just an excuse to keep talking, or it will likely have the opposite impact on your new relationship. 
  • Secondly, it keeps the conversation going.  Even when you send up a follow up email, unless there is a reason for the person to respond, they probably won't. But if you ask a thoughtful question, there's a reason for them to keep speaking with you, and the conversation can go from there. It may even become substantial enough to warrant a follow up meeting. 
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The End Zone of Business Development

In less than a week, it will be September 1st. I like to think of September as a brand new start, much like the school year used to be. It's a chance to begin again and look at your goals and plans with a fresh set of eyes. 

I want you to consider these last four months of 2014 as the "end zone" for your business development efforts this year. Yes, business development is an ongoing effort, and it doesn't end simply because the calendar year wraps up.  But I've found that when I have ongoing projects, giving myself firm deadlines to complete them motivates me far more than having some abstract end date. 

There will likely be three groups of you reading this post - those who started the year with business development plans and goals, who split them up throughout the year and made progress on them; those of you who had those plans, but who may have only made some inroads here and there; and those of you who had no plans or goals set at all. But no matter where you are, think of September as your do-over month, and the opportunity to plan for the remainder of the year. 

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Week of August 18, 2014 on ILNToday - A Roundup!

We're here at Friday again already AND it's almost September.  So who is getting ready to review their plans for this year to see where they're at for the fall? 

Before you head out for the weekend, take a look at this week's top posts! 


Standing Out in a Sea of Content: A Webinar Recap

Yesterday, the LMA Social Media SIG group was treated to a wonderful webinar, which focused on the 2014 State of Digital and Content Marketing Strategy survey done by Greentarget, Zeughauser Group, and ALM. The webinar featured John Corey (@jecorey), the president and founder of Greentarget, and Mary K. Young (@MaryKYoungZG), a partner at Zeughauser Group. 

But more than just discussing the survey itself, Mary and John talked about how law firms can get noticed in a sea of content.  We're operating in an era of information overload, and it doesn't look like that's going to change any time soon, so this is incredibly important. 

They laid the foundation for their later discussions by taking a look at the 2014 survey.  The survey focused on in-house counsel for the fourth year in a row, but also added in a law firm CMO/marketer element this year.  They had 189 in-house respondents, which include GCs, Deputy GCs, etc, and 79 law firm CMO/marketer responses, from the top 350 firms. 

For the GCs, they wanted to drill down to find out how they are using social media, and what content they find most valuable. For the CMOs, they asked more about how they are approaching content at their firms. 

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Rainmaking Recommendation from Jaimie Field: The Rainmaking Habit

My friend & rainmaking coach and trainer, Jaimie Field, is back with an excellent post today on why you should be motivated to create some new rainmaking habits! 


Recently, I have been trying to develop some habits which will have a positive effect on my life.

One of them may seem a bit silly: Make my bed every day.

This is a task that has always eluded me since I was a child when my mother, who was a bit OCD, 
would insist upon it. I think I rebelled against it and have had an issue doing so. However, as Gretchen Rubin wrote in her blog-turned-book: “The Happiness Project” the most popular resolution for happiness is making your bed. One of the reasons, she thinks, is because it is one small step that causes you to feel like you accomplished something. Besides, I don’t know about you, but it only takes me 1 minute and 34 seconds to make my bed – I actually timed it the first day so I wouldn’t have an excuse – and I like coming home to a neat place.

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Two for Tuesdays: What NOT to do When Speaking with a Client

This week's Two for Tuesdays suggestion comes straight from my friend, Nancy Myrland of Myrland Marketing - Strategic Social Media, who has two tips for what we should avoid doing when speaking with clients - and these are excellent ones. These are bad habits that we've all gotten into (not just with clients, but in general), and I'm certainly guilty myself! 

Tip One: Don't Interrupt - Let Them Finish Their Thoughts

Ah, interrupting. I'm terrible about this. I'm a bit like the word predictor on my iPhone, where I'm three steps ahead, thinking that I know what the other person is going to say, and I start answering them before they're finished saying it. 

Not only is it terribly rude, but I'm not always right about where the conversation is going. And I'm making it about me - I'm in too much of a rush, and I'm thinking too many steps ahead to let them finish their thoughts. 

So although it's difficult, let's work on pausing. Wait until the person you're speaking with has finished their thought...completely. I'll work on it too. It will make us better listeners, which will in turn make us better advocates for our clients. How can we properly do our jobs if we don't get all the facts, because we're too busy butting in?

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Building Relationship Equity *Must* Come First

On Friday, I received an email from someone I don't know - like everyone, I get LOTS of these, but this one struck me. He must read my blog, because he mentions it in his note. He even manages to spell my name correctly. 

However, the purpose for his email is to tell me about this blog post he wrote, to suggest that I use it as the subject matter of a blog post, and that I tweet out his link to my Twitter followers. In fact, he goes so far as to mention that his is a topic worthwhile of discussion by the entire legal blogosphere. Really?

Well, I'm certainly not biting.

And why not? Perhaps his article is interesting, even provocative. Perhaps I will have something to say in response, or thoughts to add.  But for me, he's broken a cardinal rule, and asked for a favor without having any relationship equity at all. 

Relationship and social equity are things we've talked about here before - we've defined "social equity" as "how you build your credibility online to increase your perceived value by others." So, by extension, I would say that relationship equity is how you build your credibility in general to increase your perceived value.  Further, the more relationship equity you have, the stronger the bond is. 


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Week of August 11, 2014 on ILNToday - A Roundup!

Incredibly, we're already mid-way through August! That makes me one happy camper, since fall is my favorite season, and the weather the last two days had certainly held the promise of autumn! 

Despite many people being out of the office on vacation, there's still a lot of content coming through on ILNToday!  So here are this week's top posts: 


ILN Firm of the Month - Dej Udom & Associates, Thailand!

We're thrilled to announce this month's Firm of the Month, Dej Udom & Associates, Thailand! 



 Member of the International Lawyers Network

The ILN is proud to announce our latest "Firm of the Month" - Dej Udom & Associates of Bangkok, Thailand!

Founded in 1986, Dej-Udom & Associates is an independent law firm in Thailand that provides legal services to a diverse client base, which ranges from leading multinational corporations to local companies and individuals. Led by Dej-Udom Krairit, the firm consists of 35 Thai lawyers and a supporting staff of over 40 paralegals, assistants, and secretaries who deliver professional legal services to clients who value expert counsel and astute representation coupled with realistic billing policies and personal contact and attention. A solely-owned Thai law firm located in Bangkok, Dej-Udom & Associates provides partner-led service in the practice areas of Litigation, Immigration & Employment, Intellectual Property, Corporate Law and Services, Taxation, and Financial Markets and Investment, and also offers specialized regional advice on the upcoming ASEAN Economic Community integration.

Full descriptions of Dej Udom & Associates' services, expertise, and lawyer profiles are available on their ILN profile.

Lindsay Griffiths
Director of Global Relationship Management
International Lawyers Network

Lindsay Griffiths


Learn More


Main Contacts: 

Dej-Udom Krairit

Dej-Udom Krairit

Telephone: +66 2233-0055

Practice Groups:
Taxation, Intellectual Property, Arbitration

Worawut Krairit

Worawut Krairit
Telephone: +66 2233-0055

Practice Groups:
Taxation, Consumer Protection, Government

Alan Griffiths

Dej-Udom & Associates have been a member firm for almost 20 years and we are grateful for their commitment and dedication to the Network.

Alan Griffiths
Executive Director
International Lawyers Network



Wondering Wednesdays: Inspiration for Content

It's a Wondering Wednesday today, and our video looks at some of the sources I look to for content inspiration for blog posts and articles. 

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Two for Tuesdays: Business Lessons from The Giver Movie Premiere

Before I get underway with this week's Two for Tuesdays, I have to say how saddened I am over the loss of Robin Williams. My thoughts are with his friends and family at this impossibly difficult time.  He brought us such joy, showed us how to be kind and giving, and will be so deeply missed by so many.


On a much lighter note, last night, I had the good fortune to be able to attend the New York premiere of The Giver, the movie adaptation of the book by the same name from author Lois Lowry.  I've never been to a movie premiere before (I was able to get tickets by fundraising for arts charities through the Weinstein Group), so I was keen to see how it all would go.

It was a lovely event, and I was tickled to see the stars up close - Meryl Streep, Jeff Bridges, Katie Holmes, Taylor Swift, Brenton Thwaites, Odeya Rush, and Cameron Monaghan were all there (missing, unfortunately, was my main reason for being there, the handsome and charismatic Alexander Skarsgard, who is currently filming in England. So if you know him, please feel free to give him my number. I am not joking.). 

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Week of August 4, 2014 on ILNToday - A Roundup!

Once again, Friday is here folks, and I'm back with a roundup! Who else is looking forward to the weekend? It's supposed to be a beautiful one here at the Jersey shore, and if the weather today is any indication, it will be lovely!

But before you head out, make sure to read through these top posts from this week on ILNToday!


ILN Success in Latin American Privacy Laws Consultation

Some of the ILN's greatest success stories are seen when multiple member firms coordinate and collaborate to service each others' clients. The most recent example of this occurred when the ILN's member in Missouri, Lewis, Rice & Fingersh, L.C. required a consultation with a number of Latin American jurisdictions regarding privacy laws. Together with Alan Griffiths, the ILN's Executive Director, Luis Lavalle Moreno of Martinez, Algaba, De Haro, Curiel y Galvan-Duque, S.C. of Mexico spearheaded the effort.

The two contacted and coordinated with member firms in the target regions, including Cordero & Cordero Abogados in Costa Rica and Aninat Schwencke & Cia in Chile. ILN members also assisted in connecting Lewis Rice with other contacts in the region where the ILN is not currently represented, to ensure that the client's needs were met quickly and professionally. Luis Lavalle Moreno shared that: 

It was a very good experience, because we were able to review and work together with all of the jurisdictions in a very specific issue of law having to do with privacy laws."

Stan Johnston of Lewis Rice & Fingersh, L.C. added that

The ILN was essential in finding and coordinating counsel in 11 jurisdictions throughout Latin America. We have found a very valuable resource in the Martinez Algaba firm, and look forward to working with Luis Lavalle Moreno in the future."

The ability for member firms in multiple jurisdictions to pool their collective experience under one coordinating body is a significant benefit in meeting clients' needs on a global scale.

Rainmaking Recommendation from Jaimie Field: Back to Basics

It's the first Wednesday of the month, so you know what that means...a rainmaking recommendation from rainmaking coach and expert Jaimie Field!  Jaimie posted her 100th rainmaking post today - congratulations! - and it's a great one on getting us back to basics. 


Wow! 100 Rainmaking Recommendations! Thank you for being a part of this journey and here’s to many more.

But for now, let’s get back to basics. This is just something to think about. In the next few months there will be many more blogs on how to use various marketing and rainmaking tactics to grow your visibility and book of business. (Please keep an eye on the blog. There’s some changes-a-comin’…..)

There is a huge difference between marketing and rainmaking. It is a difference that many attorneys seem to forget when they try to become rainmakers. They launch a website, have a Facebook or Linked In page. They write blog posts and give seminars. 

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