The Mentorist


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From the Client’s Chair: Little Big Things — How to Build Client Loyalty

‘From the Client’s Chair’ is a series of blog posts offering a client’s perspective on working with law firms.  The observations are based on my 20+ years as a General Counsel, spent hiring and working with firms worldwide.

Let’s face it:  Most big law firms are bursting with competent lawyers.  It takes smarts to get a BigLaw job offer and an off-the-charts work ethic to avoid having to find another.  In this world, competence is table stakes.

Once upon a time, that was enough to keep your clients happy and loyal.  Today, all that has changed:  Law-firm hopping makes speed dating look like commitment.

So, what’s a lawyer to do? Continue reading


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From the Client’s Chair: 50 Ways to Lose Your Client — Method #1

‘From the Client’s Chair’ is a blog post series that explores some of the ways law firms ‘misfire’ when trying to win — and keep — business.  The observations are based on my experiences as a General Counsel ‘client’ who has selected and worked with hundreds of law firms over the years. So, let’s turn to…

The $30,000 Memo

Sometimes the client wants to buy experience.

My company was planning to sign a major contract negotiated by the Legal Team I headed.  The negotiations had been arduous [that’s what happens when the other side has all the power], yet we’d managed to protect the company from an unreasonable amount of liability.

Or had we? Continue reading


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From the Client’s Chair: Why Your Firm’s Marketing Pitch Didn’t Work — Reason #3

‘From the Client’s Chair’ is a blog post series that explores some of the ways law firms ‘misfire’ when trying to win (and keep) business. The observations are based on my experiences as a General Counsel ‘client’ who has selected and worked with hundreds of law firms over the years. So, let’s turn to…

 Reason #3 for Not Winning My Business: ‘It’s All About Me’

Every General Counsel has been there: The conference room door shuts, the law firm starts its marketing pitch and, for the next hour or so, a quartet of ‘suits’ spews forth about the firm’s competencies, talent pool and achievements.

So, what’s wrong with this picture? Not one person in the group has tried to figure out what my company’s (and, hence, my) problems are and how we’ve been approaching them.

Rather, the firm has interpreted the phrase ‘dog and pony show’ literally, trotting out one expert after another, with the intent of ‘wowing’ me into a business relationship. Continue reading