What Law School Didn’t Teach You About Law Practice Success

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One of the biggest shockers to me, bar none, when I hung my shingle and started my own law practice was that I would have to learn how to sell.

I figured I’d go out, do some speaking in my local community, people would hear me talk about something they needed, they would come into my office and they’d leave having written me a check. I’d be able to engage a few new clients every month and easily support my family.

Of course, it wasn’t quite like that.

Law school didn’t teach me that in order to be successful in my law practice I’d have to learn how to sell.

No lawyers I’ve ever met like to sell, period … not even me.

Yet, if we don’t learn how to sell our services, we end up the best kept secret in town. We can provide the very best service, be the very best lawyer, know the most, but if we aren’t engaging new clients consistently, we’ll be out of business.

So what’s a lawyer who loves lawyering and wants to do it her own way, in her own practice, to do?

The key is to learn how to sell in a way that feels good to both you and your clients. Yes, it’s possible.

To do this, you’ve got to become a counselor, consultant, and a trusted advisor – someone who helps your clients make great decisions.

It all starts with your initial meeting.

If you go into your initial meeting desperate to make the sale, focused only on how much money the client is worth and why you need it so badly, your prospects are going to walk out without engaging your services.

If you go into the initial meeting unattached to the outcome, committed to giving your prospects a great, informative experience and helping them to make the very best decision for themselves and their family, you will no matter what. And 9 times out of 10, they will write you a check before they walk out the door.

As much as you hate selling, your prospects hate being sold to double as much.

Here’s a 60-second meditation that I used before every single client meeting, which should help you:

Right before stepping in to the meeting space, close your eyes for a moment and visualize the people who will be sitting across from you feeling served, cared about and nodding along as you talk.  Imagine them feeling great about you, what you offer and saying yes to moving forward. Feel yourself serving them deeply.

Mentally review your agenda of introducing yourself, following your script and the agenda of your meeting — yes, each of your initial meetings should have a script that flows such that you know exactly what will happen and when in each meeting. If you don’t have this, be sure to join us on our next training call on engaging more clients in your law practice.

Then, walk into the meeting, say hello and watch it unfold.

This whole thing can take as little as 30 seconds, and not more than 60.

Try it before your next meeting and then come back here to let me know how it worked for you in the comments.e

About the Contributor
Alexis Neely is a Law Business Mentor and creator of the New Law Business Model. She built her law practice from scratch into a million dollar a year generating business in just three years with the new law business model her family and her clients loved.