Lawyer Business Development: Proactively Align with Client Business Strategies to Win New Work

When law firms proactively study the strategies of their prospective clients then act upon those strategies – they are likely to win more business.  Silvia Coulter explains in a recent article that when law firms clearly understand the strategic goals of the company, it can then be an integral part of the work associated with implementing those business goals.

Align firm services with client goals

She emphasizes the importance of being proactive in this competitive legal market.  And that proactive stance means aligning with client goals, anticipating their legal needs, and thereby becoming an integral business and legal partner with clients.

In the case of existing clients, she suggests law firms ask for a copy of their client’s strategic plans, or a copy of the executive summary of the strategic plan – as a means by which to deeply understand client goals, anticipate their needs and suggest where the firm can meet those needs.  Here, align client goals with law firm service offerings with the aim of delivering value by helping the client to achieve its goals.

I would also suggest law firms do something similar when they approach new prospective clients.  When you align all your communications with prospective client strategic objectives, you are much more likely to be positively received when you ask for a discussion with that prospective client.

Two cases in point

Coulter details how a California law firm representing a Japanese company with US operations asked for the company’s strategic plan. The executive summary of the plan revealed the company was interested in US acquisitions.  As a result of this knowledge, the firm identified acquirable assets – one of which resulted in an acquisition.  And the law firm provided the legal worked associated with the acquisition.

In my own work on behalf of an AmLaw 100 law firm in Europe – I approached the management of a large British company with an interest in expanding into the US market.  We provided the company with a series of options for where and how they might expand into the US.  Ultimately, the company entered the US market and the law firm helped them secure key contracts – while at the same time going public in a US-focused listing.  In this case the firm agreed to utilize the law firm I represented for all its US legal work – which became substantial. (see the experience section on this blog for similar examples of my work).

Lawyer Business Development Coaching

I help lawyers develop personal business development plans custom-tailored to their unique practices — via one-on-one video or audio coaching sessions.  My experience includes hundreds of face-to-face meetings with prospective clients on behalf of law firms – where I helped clients realize how lawyers can help them achieve their commercial objectives. These meetings first required me to identify client needs – reaching out to those prospective clients and securing meetings with them on behalf of my clients and succeeding in securing those meetings. And shepherding those relationships to becoming new client engagements.  For more information about how I might be able to help you build your law practice, please complete the form below and I’ll contact you promptly.

Thank you for visiting my blog.  I hope to hear from you.

John Grimley

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