Tag Archives: marketing

Lose Thirty Pounds; Develop New Clients

Samira Mery Lineberger, Esq.
 
“Patience, persistence and perspiration make an unbeatable combination for success.”       Napoleon Hill

Let’s say you just got your beach trip photos back and after perusing them you reluctantly accept the fact that you really need to lose those thirty pounds you had fooled yourself into thinking you could hide under your loose work clothes.  You paste that terribly unflattering side view photo on the refrigerator (you know, the one that shows your expanding mid-section and an extra flap underneath your chin).  You get rid of all the junk in your kitchen, buy the “good” foods that fit the latest diet plan you have selected, and you dust off your exercise equipment.  You have a plan and you are determined to implement it.  First day is great.  You think you are not in as bad of shape as you thought because you don’t feel sore (just wait a few days).  It’s a little tough passing up your usual fair, but you stick to your diet plan.   The first week is a struggle, but somehow you manage to keep up your diet and exercise regiment, and you are rewarded for your efforts with some weight loss.  The next week is a little tougher.  You had some lunch meetings and it was a little embarrassing pulling off the bread from the sub sandwiches that were brought in, but you managed and again were rewarded with a few more pounds lost.  But at your cousin’s wedding that weekend, after a few glasses of red wine (since it is “good” for your heart, so you rationalize), you decide you deserve to celebrate a little for the weight you managed to lose in the first two weeks and you indulge a bit.  By week three you are making more concessions on your food choices and you are too busy to keep up the exercise regiment, but you vow to do better the next week.  Two months later, you have long abandoned your plan, you have gained all the weight back, and that brief few weeks when you were able to put on those smaller sized jeans have passed.

So what does this have to do with getting new clients?  Plenty!  A successful weight loss program generally requires “patience, persistence and perspiration.”  So does a successful marketing plan.  You may dabble in marketing here and there and manage to pick up some legal work, but sustained business development requires, you guessed it, patience, persistence and hard work (you don’t actually need to perspire although it has been known to happen, especially in Texas).  The best of intentions will not lead to reliable long term growth.  Only focused, persistent and sustained efforts will create a stable and reliable business portfolio, no matter how creative the marketing plan.  In the end, great marketing programs are not generally based on highly complex and unique concepts.  In fact, there is usually nothing extraordinary about the actual marketing activities, except to the extent that they are passionately and persistently pursued.  If you can master the persistence it takes to lose and maintain your weight loss, you can master an effective marketing plan.  Otherwise, you may as well take the photo off the refrigerator.  Why depress yourself?

 

“Anyone Can Cook.” What Law Firms Can Learn From Ratatouille About Business Development.

Samira Mery Lineberger, Esq.
 
“If you can find collaborators whose strengths compliment your own, the result can be more than the sum of its authors.”       Walter John Williams

In the popular animated Disney film, Ratatouille an unusually talent rat finds himself cooking in a famous restaurant in Paris, guided by the encouragement of his mentor, a famous, well-published chef who is known for his assertion that “anyone can cook.”  The antagonist, an equally famous food critic, scuffs at such a notion, but eventually appreciates its meaning when he realizes that strengths and talents can be found in the most unexpected places.  We learn that it is the combination of the individuals working together that made that make believe Paris restaurant successful.  By utilizing the strengths of its individuals in the various roles they excelled in, together they were able to create a great meal.  Law firms today can utilize this concept in developing a great marketing program.

A common complaint I hear from many managing partners is that when it comes to business development, some people are just not trainable.  In some ways, this is true.  Being a great lawyer does not necessarily equate to being a great rainmaker.  While most lawyers tend to be good advocates, there is more to rainmaking than winning debates and being persuasive.  Business development skills can be taught to a certain degree, but excellence in such skills is limited to those whose natural strengths compliment the work that needs to be done to develop business.  However, if the activities necessary for business development can be broken into difference categories, such as networking, speaking, researching, writing, etc., the number of lawyers that can contribute utilizing their natural strengths and talents can be increased, and thereby reduce the burden on the few lawyers that have strengths that naturally match the bulk of the business development activities.  Rather than trying to train all the lawyers to do all things, lawyers should focus on contributing to the business development of the firm in the ways that are more suited toward their natural strengths.  Networkers should network.  Speakers should speak.  Researchers should research.  Writers should write.  With the collective effort of each lawyer contributing based on their strengths, they can all “cook” and produce something greater than the sum of its parts.