What happens when you lose touch with someone who may be a good connection for you? In today’s rainmaking recommendation post from coach, Jaimie Field, she explains how you can reconnect!

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In a perfect world, you would never lose touch with anyone you have met.  You would never lose touch with your clients; you would never lose touch with a referral source; you would never lose touch with any prospects.

But this is not a perfect world and life creeps in to steal time from you every single day.  You look up and a week has passed, a month.  Another year has flown.   In fact, I cannot believe that it is already fall and that there are less than 4 months left to 2019. 
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Are you stuck thinking that business development is too big of a hurdle? Read today’s guest post from rainmaking expert and trainer, Jaimie Field, to find out why it’s not rocket science.

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On Saturday, July 20, 2019, we will celebrate the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 landing on the moon.  Think about this for a moment.  50 years ago, technology was rudimentary comparatively speaking to today’s tech (and even tomorrow’s tech).  Yet, they were able to land a man on the moon. 
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One of the questions I am asked most often is about how to manage relationships when we’re all so busy – and we are ALL so busy these days!

LinkedIn is a great tool for professionals (even lawyers!) to employ to efficiently and effectively develop relationships without a huge time investment. Yes, like with any social media, you have to be somewhat diligent about not getting sucked in to it and losing time, but with some time management safeguards in place, it’s possible to maximize your use of it without wasting your efforts.
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Today’s post from rainmaking expert and trainer, Jaimie Field, comes at a fortuitous moment – I’m in the middle of reading “The Power of Full Engagement: Managing Energy, Not Time, Is the Key to High Performance and Personal Renewal,” by Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz, which delves into the balancing of energy in four key areas in order to maximize your performance. We tend to believe that pushing forward all the time is the key to success, but there is great evidence to suggest that taking breaks (not just extended vacation breaks, but short breaks during the workday) are key to doing your job more effectively and efficiently. It sounds like a cop out, but I’ve been working to implement some of their suggestions in my life this week in places where I see the most issues, and I can already feel a difference in sustainability and focus. I highly recommend picking up the book!

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While my last Rainmaking Recommendation told you that you should not allow the summer months to make you lazy in your business development activities, since tomorrow is the 4th of July in the United States, a National holiday, this Rainmaking Recommendation is devoted to telling you that you NEED to take time for yourself.  Take a vacation, even if it is only a few days, to rest and recharge. 
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Of all the social media platforms out there, I’d venture to say that LinkedIn is the one that lawyers are most comfortable using. It has a reputation for being the most professional, and as a result, it’s had the widest adoption within the industry. In recent years, LinkedIn has really expanded their offerings, and provided a robust, deep platform that allows us to engage in new ways, all which make it an even more valuable platform than it was at the beginning.

Like any social platform (or any tool, really), LinkedIn is what you make of it – you can treat it as a place to broadcast from, and as long as you have something valuable to say, you may find that many people are listening to you. But if you want to use it as a business development tool, then you need to get serious about the steps that you take to leverage its features. I read a great article recently on Inc. which talked about three ways to use LinkedIn to attract your ideal customer. Since “sales” is a dirty word for lawyers, we’re instead going to talk about using LinkedIn for business/relationship development (which, by the way, is really the same thing, but said in a more palatable way).
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While I’m out of the office this week for our Annual Conference, I’m bringing you a guest post from Vince Robisch, of Minimalex – Vince coaches attorneys on improving their business development process to bring in more corporate clients. He practiced at an AmLaw 200 firm for eight years, and has sold millions of dollars of products and services to corporate legal departments and law firms, an experience that helps him to understand his clients and their clients. He currently coaches attorneys from specialized boutiques to some of the largest firms in the United States. You can learn more at his website. Vince is using the dreaded “s” word today – sales – to talk about an important topic, that of business development. It turns out that data helps your business. Who knew?

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Let’s be clear that lawyers don’t need to turn into professional salespeople to be good at business development.  In fact, sales and business development often get used interchangeably when in reality, sales is focused on revenue generation, while business development tries to identify a product/market fit.

For our purposes, business development is the action of growing existing clients and bringing in new clients.  Lawyers are in a much better position than the average salesperson to control the entire process and can leave behind all of the advice of slick, high-volume sales pros.  That’s not your business and it won’t help.
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Rainmaking trainer and expert, Jaimie Field, is bringing us another solid tip for business development today, and it’s about exercise! She mentions me in here – not by name, but I’m the one who ran the Paris marathon this weekend – but that’s not the only reason I’m sharing this post. I’ll add to her comments that exercise is a great tool for business development, not just for the reasons she outlines below, but also because it gives you opportunities to connect to potential business contacts. Running with my lawyers enables a different group of people to network as we explore a new city – you may find that joining your local gym exposes you to potential clients or referral sources, or your weekly squash game is something that you can play with a new client. Rather than meeting for drinks, you meet for a round of golf or a new running route. Train for a race with a client or potential client, and it could change your whole relationship. Explore exercise as another way to develop business, as well as change the relationship you have with your health. And if you are a female runner, or a woman wanting to become a runner, check out the Badass Lady Gang, which has almost 60 chapters around the world and is a great way to get started (full disclosure, I lead my local chapter). 
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The curse of the marathon runner – we’re either running, or we’re talking about running. Apologies to everyone around me who isn’t a runner who’s had to suffer through my running and running-adjacent conversations over the last several months.

I’m 12 days away from my first marathon (in PARIS!) and I’m both excited and anxious about it. I joke that my life is either about work or running or trying to take care of my dogs – with little room for anything else. But it’s not an exaggeration.

So it’s no surprise that as I’m well into my taper (the period before the marathon where you reduce your mileage so that your legs will be fresh to run the 26.2 miles that the marathon demands), all I’m thinking about is running. What can that possibly have to do with business development? Quite a lot as it happens.
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There are some people who can talk with anyone – my brother-in-law is like that. Put him in a room with a bunch of people he doesn’t know, and he excels at connecting with them without awkward silences.

But for many of us, that is unfortunately not one of our strengths. I’m a prime example of that. Raise your hand if you’ve ever been speaking with someone, only to have the conversation taper off and leave you standing there wracking your brain to come up with something to say?

*Hand raised*
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Today’s rainmaking recommendation from Jaimie Field is an interesting one, and she and I chatted about it yesterday – it’s one where we don’t totally agree, so readers of Zen, we’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments! My perspective is that dress code varies widely (acceptably so) based on cultural factors – sometimes including climate, client base, type of firm, etc. And yes, as the age of the firm changes, so does the dress code. Jaimie tends to feel strongly about this (as you’ll see in her post below). What do you think?

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I may get my butt handed to me on a silver platter for this post, but I will still write this because I truly believe what I am about to say:

Attorneys have to go back to dressing like professionals!
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