Creating A Culture Of Help (Part VII)
Create a Culture of Help in Your Business
Building A Legal Practice Designed To Last, Part VII
Who is the most important person at your office? The answer is the person at the front desk. The reason is that this is the person who will most frequently be called upon to help the people who contact your office. When a potential client calls a law office they are looking for one thing: help. That’s why at Minick Law, our front desk is known as the Help Desk.
How Helpful is Your Front Desk?
Have you ever walked into an office and the receptionist acts like you are the worst part of their day. The person sits there starring at you with an expression that says “Oh great, another moron to deal with.” First impressions are crucial and it is your receptionist that has the lone ability to immediately communicate to the client the value of your office as a place where he is valued, rather than seen as a nuisance.
Conduit of Funds
Creating a culture of help, begins by everyone in the office, attorneys and staff alike, perceiving the real value of their clients. As Jeffrey Gitomer has written: “The president, CEO, or owner of your company does not pay you. He or she is just a conduit for funds. The customer [client] pays you. The boss just writes the check for money put in the bank by customers [clients]. It’s not your boss you need to be afraid to make angry . . . it’s your customer [client].”
Every employee’s paycheck at a law office is directly tied to how helpful the office is to its clients.
Quality Legal Work is Not Enough
Offering quality legal work is not enough. When a client hires you to draft a will they expect to receive a quality legal product (otherwise why should they not just go to LegalZoom?). When a client hires you to represent them in a traffic ticket, they are already expecting that you will use your best effort to achieve the best possible result.
So how do you exceed expectations when the bar is set so high? It’s all in the way you provide that legal service. You need to have a “help attitude” and provide outstanding customer service in addition to providing outstanding legal services.
Creating a Culture of HELP
There are a few things you can do to create this culture of help within your law firm:
Don’t complain about clients (or better yet don’t complain about anything), especially in front of your staff. A whining office will quickly deteriorate into an office incapable of being helpful.
Instead: go the extra mile for a client, especially in front of your staff.
Encourage your staff to be involved in making your legal business great.
Have opportunities that involve your staff giving back to the community. Incorporate a spirit of charity at the office.
Have regular opportunities for your staff to offer suggestions on improving your services.
Include your staff in both forming and carrying out the mission of your business. Make every member of your team feel integral to the success of your office, because . . . they are!
Vital for any organization, but especially law firms, is the work that every staff member puts into his or her job. The client sees them, the front-line worker, before they ever see you or one of your attorneys, so your staff is uniquely equipped to make a great first impression. Never forget the integral contribution that your staff makes to your firm, and never forget to remind them of the fact too!
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