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  • April 14, 2019 2:47 PM | Kirsten Lovett (Administrator)

    Excited about launching a new client team program, an 800-lawyer firm had everything in place.  Leadership from the top and key stakeholders were strongly supporting the focus. They appointed five partners who had significant client relationships as the team leaders and suggested they build the teams and come up with team plans. After five months the excitement fizzled and attendance at the monthly team meetings was sparse. Team members delayed their tasks and missed deadlines. What happened?  We see this in more than just this client firm.

    Here are the strategic account team “must-haves” in order to drive significant revenue.

    • Team Members:  Teams should have no more than 7 members. No sales team works at their optimum performance level if they are too big. The suggested team members include at least one senior partner, two mid-level partners, and one junior partner who have strong client relationships, two to three associates at various levels, and a strong sales person on each team.
    • Sales Training: Sales training is a must. In fact the big sales teams in corporate America, Big Four, and other significant organizations go through sales training once a year. Learning these key skills and being reminded of them regularly is critical to sales success at winning new business and growing revenue.
    • Team Leader Training: How many partners in law firms are trained in management and leadership? Generally not many. To effectively lead a strategic account team, take the time to train the firm’s team leaders in how to manage strategic account teams.  Otherwise, the team may never be as good as it could be with strong team leadership.
    • Client Involvement: Clients must be involved with the strategic account planning process. Especially if it’s about their business!  Without client involvement, there is a possibility of lawyers meeting regularly and bloviating about their knowledge of the client, boring everyone else on the team. Clients will tell you what’s going on, what their strategic growth goals are, and what’s important to them. This is an absolute must.
    • Co-Team Leaders: Teams must meet on a regular basis. Properly designed, a strategic account program should be the umbrella over offices, practices, industry groups, and all other firm planning. Strategic accounts often make up 80-85% of any firm’s revenue. If the team leader is not able to meet, the team needs to meet regardless, so the process keeps moving forward. Co-team leaders or a vice team leader is best for optimal team performance.
    • An Assistant for Meeting Minutes: Business Development professionals are not there to take notes.  They are there to provide strategic sales and business development assistance, ideas, and issue-spotting for the team.  A good assistant will be helpful for drafting the monthly agenda with follow up items from the previous meeting.
    • The Client’s Strategic Plan: If partners are afraid to ask for this, then their relationship is absolutely not where it needs to be. A “partner” to the client will definitely be seen as an adjunct member of the client’s own team. They would want their outside counsel to know their strategic goals. Just ask! A strategic account team is not as effective without alignment to the client’s strategic goals.
    • Business Development Support: The best support a firm can have for its strategic account management program is a strategic sales person with experience. As a team member, there is no better strength than to have a sales person who knows how to help the partners and the team close business and grow client relationships.  If partners don’t have faith in their business development pro, then find someone who they do have confidence in. Teaming up with sales professionals will often mean winning new business and competing much more effectively.
    • Meeting Agenda: Don’t wing it.  You would not do that for a client meeting. These meetings are important and need to focus on the future and sales strategy for retaining the client and winning new business.  Keep action items strategic in nature and have a clear purpose and identified outcome for each action step.

    Following these best practices for developing and maintaining successful strategic account teams will help the firm focus, grow, and prosper.

    —————————————-

    About the Author

    Silvia Coulter is a Principal Consultant with LawVision and Co-Founder of the Legal Sales & Service Organization.  She may be reached at scoulter@lawvision.com or 617-697-4869.

  • April 12, 2019 3:57 PM | Jenifer Hamilton (Administrator)

    The position will be in their New York office. Read more!

  • April 04, 2019 11:58 AM | Jenifer Hamilton (Administrator)

    Become a Master Coach, network with your peers and advance your career. Register now for an upcoming event.

    COACHING ADVANTAGE CERTIFICATION PROGRAM

    May 15-16, 2019 in New York, NY
    July 22-23, 2019 in Boston, MA

    Coaching is emerging as an important discipline within the legal profession. Learning or refining business development coaching skills to help lawyers reach their full business development potential is an excellent career advancement strategy. Through our partnership with LawVision, we at LSSO offer our attendees and members the unparalleled opportunity to advance their careers as business development coaches. Our coaching certification program provides training, tools, and credentials for coaching lawyers at all skill levels. 

    Register Now

    16th ANNUAL RAINDANCE CONFERENCE

    June 5-6, 2019 in Chicago, IL

    RainDance offers less of the theory and more of the practical, effective sales and service strategies for attendees to bring back to their firm and implement immediately.  With an intimate setting, you can expect open and honest dialogue among the attendees about the challenges they face in meeting the demands of the increasingly competitive and evolving industry.

    Register Now

    OTHER INDUSTRY EVENTS   

    2019 CLOC VEGAS INSTITUTE

    May 14-16, 2019 in Las Vegas, NV  

    The goal of the CLOC Institute is to disseminate actionable steps that can be taken to drive specific changes -- things many can get excited about, get involved in, and make happen, rather than just talking about a tipping point and "change". With educational sessions provided by practicing industry leaders, the CLOC 2019 Institute offers unrivaled opportunities to stay on the cutting edge of today’s legal operations trends and technologies.

    Register Now

    P3® – THE PRACTICE INNOVATION CONFERENCE

    June 12-14, 2019 in Chicago, IL  

    Get Ready for the seventh LMA P3 – The Practice Innovation Conference, aimed at bringing together pricing, project management and process improvement experts this spring. The 2019 P3 Conference held at the Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile will take place June 12-14.  Register before May 20, 2019, to take advantage of maximum savings.

    Register Now

    Law Firm Management Master of Professional Studies

    Apply today for a Masters in Law Firm Management at George Washington University. Designed to accommodate the demanding schedules of full-time professionals, the master’s degree in Law Firm Management provides you with the perspective of senior partners and prepares you to take leadership roles in the management of your firm. Students have compared the program to an MBA for the legal services industry.

    Apply Today

     

    Join LSSO

     


  • March 15, 2019 4:15 PM | Jenifer Hamilton (Administrator)

    The Legal Sales and Service Organization (LSSO) has chosen a panel of three highly respected judges who will be evaluating and selecting the winners for the 2019 Sales & Service Awards. The awards recognize the efforts and results of individuals and teams who have spearheaded initiatives contributing to law firm revenue growth.

    The judges’ panel includes:

    • Erica Glass: Director of Global Corporate Communications - Legal Solutions for  Wolters Kluwer Governance, Risk & Compliance.
    • Chris HummelDirector of Marketing and Business Development for Banner Witcoff, an intellectual property boutique law firm with offices in Chicago, Washington, D.C., Boston, and Portland. 
    • Samantha McKennaAward-winning leader of  Enterprise Sales for the LinkedIn Sales Navigator NYC office.

    Join us in Chicago on June 5-6, 2019 for the 16th Annual RainDance Conference where John Hellerman will lead a panel discussion with the winners of the 2019 LSSO Sales & Service Award. 

    "As sales and client service positions evolve in the legal industry, it's important that we highlight their work and impact on the bottom line. We have gathered some of the original movers and shakers as judges to help us identify the leaders in this space. Stay tuned for the professionals and projects that are selected, and plan to attend 
    LSSO's RainDance to learn more." 

    John HellermanHellerman Communications

     

  • March 12, 2019 5:56 PM | Jenifer Hamilton (Administrator)

    This position can be located in any Ballard Spahr office.  Read more!

  • March 06, 2019 2:20 PM | Jenifer Hamilton (Administrator)





    By David Whiteside, Director of Client Growth & Success at CLIENTSFirst

    According to CRM company Salesforce.com, more sales time is wasted, and productivity lost due to targeting the wrong prospects than any other sales task. The old “run me a list of companies in X industry and Y geography” is just not tight enough. More bad prospects dumped in the pipeline leads to more lost follow-up time on these same bad prospects, and less time spent on good prospects.

    How do we improve targeting and be sure we are targeting the highest quality prospects (whether by the attorney or a professional sales person)? Let’s start by focusing on the tools, law firms we might use to create a target list that is tightly segmented and targeted to yield better results.

    Tools:

    Tools fall in three categories. Let’s look at each and how they can be used for targeting.

    1. Internal non-marketing – primary function is not marketing or business development
    2. Internal marketing – primary function is marketing & business development
    3. External – free or purchased sources to aid marketing & business development

    Internal Non-Marketing Tools:

    These include Accounting, Matter Management, Intake, KM Systems, Document Management, Expert witness database, referral database and more. These are typically siloed as they were designed and purchased for one function. That function typically was not sales/marketing. But these tools do contain a wealth of information if the user is skilled in mining that information. Key data that can be mined from these tools includes:

    • Client or prospect? (Accounting)
    • How did the client find us or how did we find them? (Intake/Referral database)
    • What matters have we done? (Matter Management / Accounting)
    • What attorney brought in the work? (Intake/referral)
    • What timekeepers performed work and rates charged? (Accounting/Matter Management)
    • How profitable was the engagement? (Accounting)
    • How successful was the engagement? (Accounting/Matter Management/Client Feedback)
    • How much work have we done as a firm, or has a specific practice, office or attorney done in a specific matter type? (Accounting/Matter Management)

    Internal Marketing Tools:

    Firms also have internal tools for marketing and business development purposes. A website is a staple in every firm and the core function is to display content with the most frequently visited pages typically being attorney bios and experience where prospects are credentialing a lawyer. CRM/ERM (Customer Relationship Management / Enterprise Relationship Management) systems are common in many. An “Experience Database” is not as common, but very useful with the primary function of taking internal matter data and translating internal data to market facing data. CRM/ERM systems are designed to collect data about clients and prospects and provide a historical view of who do we know, who knows them the best, and ideally what interactions have we had with them as far as meetings, events attended, newsletters subscribed to, social media interaction and other data. The goal is to understand their “engagement level” with us past and present. Key data that can be mined from these tools includes:

    • Who knows who - What attorneys have relationships with which clients/prospects? (ERM/CRM)
    • What interactions do we currently have with them? Newsletters, blogs, Twitter or other feeds subscribed to or future events signed up for. (CRM/Website)
    • Past interactions – what did they attend, subscribe to in past, former employment (CRM/Website)
    • Work performed successfully (Experience Database if available as only successes are cataloged.)
    • Expert Witnesses – these are typically stored somewhere – hopefully in your CRM system but if not cross reference experts, attorneys and clients.
    • Referrals - these are typically stored somewhere – probably intake – hopefully then cataloged in your CRM system but if not cross reference, attorneys and clients.
    • Client preferences – here are just a few - do they prefer email? Phone? Who is assistant? Spouse? Children? Favorite teams? Dietary restrictions? Civic involvement? Religion? Politics? School/Alumni? Law firm employment? (Ideally in CRM – but likely need to look in several places – when they attended events what did they order to eat?)

    Data Quality - before using the firm CRM system, ask your CRM team about the reliability and quality of the data. Data gets old very quickly. Studies by Gartner and others show about 30% of contact data changes every year as people change jobs, get promotions, move, retire and even die. Consider your own mobile phone – contacts get added regularly over time. But how many of your contacts in your phone were added long ago and are inaccurate or incomplete in some fashion? You still have their company two jobs ago but because you call/text their mobile phone, you don’t update the rest? The firm CRM system can suffer from the same problem. Does not make it unusable, just means you need to validate data with other sources if you have questions on accuracy. Contacting someone and not having their new title 3 months after their big promotion may not be fatal, but not a great start either.

    External Tools:

    Company website, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and other social media are usually free and can provide a wealth of information on a prospect. Hoovers, Monitor Suite, Capital IQ, Pitchbook, Bloomberg, The Deal, Westlaw, Ibis World, Lexis or other external subscription information tools provide targeting help with business and legal history if available. These are subscription based and as a rule rely on publicly available information through filings and news. They are often much easier to use than internal systems as they are designed to pull together information in a more consumable format. Key data that can be mined from these tools includes:

    • Company website – for larger companies this is a treasure trove with everything from officers and director’s bio’s to SEC filings, business organization and structure, and business strategy and direction.
    • LinkedIn, Facebook (I would suggest connecting on LinkedIn if you have a business connection. Facebook as more of a personal tool so although you might find Facebook information on a prospect, I don’t suggest friending them until you really know them and maybe ask permission.) Following on Twitter is common and non-threatening. Facebook and LinkedIn both have a lot of “groups” you can ask permission to join. Often these are by common interest or industry.
    • Hoovers – Hoovers provides a business overview of a company as well as allows for list building based on business criteria like size, sales volume, industry and location. Claim to have 120 million business records. These business records are not always separate companies as may include locations on same business – think McDonalds. But generally thought of as a decent tool.
    • Monitor Suite – This tool from Thomson Reuters provides information on three main areas; Litigation, Deals & Intellectual Property. There are many uses for this tool and it has capabilities for list building and other handy functions, but the most common use is to run reports on companies, industries, law firms and lawyers. A report on a company for example can show what law firms/lawyers are hired for litigation, IP or Deal work. Frequency work occurs, jurisdictions/geography, opposing counsel and more. Figuring out how to ferret the details out of the reports takes some skill but tool is easy enough to use. A large number of AmLaw firms have this tool. Monitor Suite would usually be considered the “A” tool for business development in litigation.
    • Pitch Book, Capital IQ, The Deal, Bloomberg, Thomson Reuters Eikon are all tools that are used for doing “Deal” work. Deal work broadly might include M&A, private equity, bond work and more with information on parties, representation and more.
    • Legal research with Westlaw & Lexis – these two tools are best known for their “legal research”. The ability to find cases and statutes “on point” is the traditional use case. But both are adding more and more databases and tools that not only facilitate, but target business developers. Expert Witness reports is one area that can be researched as you profile what a prospect might need and how your firm experience might be a fit.
    • Industry research is an area that gets a lot of discussion. Google is certainly the most widely used and will find a large mass of information. The time required is the biggest challenge to Google and other wide search tools. Ibis World has a very straight forward industry research tool that breaks down and industries and major players. Gartner, Forrester and others have tools that rate companies and products with some free but most behind subscription wall. One of the most valuable reasons to search industry information is to compare a single company against their peers. Do their legal issues for example trend with peer companies? Or do they have FLSA or other legal issues that seem out of line with peer companies?

    Targeting prospective work with the highest potential ROI requires discipline and process. Fighting the tendency to chase bad prospects simply because they seem interested or look like an easy meeting to get is hard and often goes against what seems like the logical thing to do. Discipline in the targeting process will deliver better results.

    About the Author:

    Dave Whiteside is Director of Client Growth & Success at CLIENTSFirst.

    Dave’s focus is helping the company grow and expand its CRM, Data Quality, eMarketing and Client Intelligence service offerings, and building alliances that help deliver additional value to Clients.


  • February 28, 2019 4:26 PM | Jenifer Hamilton (Administrator)

    Kirkland & Ellis is seeking a coordinator to support the marketing and business development efforts of the San Francisco and Palo Alto (Bay Area) offices. The Senior Coordinator will report to the Bay Area Business Development (BD) Manager in San Francisco. The Senior Coordinator will also communicate and collaborate daily with nearly 100 diverse problem-solvers and advisers dedicated to the broader business development, marketing and communications efforts of the Firm. Our international business development team provides seamless service to our attorneys with a focus on quality, innovation and responsiveness. We are looking for a self-starter with good judgement and a background in professional services marketing and business development.

    Read more here!

  • February 28, 2019 2:22 PM | Jenifer Hamilton (Administrator)

    The position is for Mountain View/San Francisco, Seattle or New York.

    Read more!

  • February 24, 2019 7:09 PM | Kirsten Lovett (Administrator)

    John Hellerman Interviews the 2017 and 2018 Sales & Service Team Winners

    The Sales & Service team award salutes the efforts and results of groups who have spearheaded initiatives that help drive revenue in their law firms. John Hellerman, Hellerman Communications, interviewed members of the 2017 and 2018 winning teams to glean the key elements of their firms' winning initiatives and the secrets of their success. 

    We hope you will be inspired to submit your nomination for the 2019 awards!

    2017 Sales & Service Team Award - Benesch Law

    Hear from Liz Boehm how the marketing and business development team at Benesch launched “Team Everest: the Peak Performers Summit.”

    2018 Sales & Service Team Award - Orrick

    Hear from Helena Lawrence how Orrick’s GDPR Readiness Assessment Tool hit the market just right.

    ______________________________

    Submit your nomination now 

    If you or someone you know has demonstrated innovative techniques in retaining or growing firm revenue, submit a nomination on or before February 28, 2018. Large and small firm categories. See the nomination form for more details.

    Sales & Service Executive of the Year
    This award goes to a leader who played a crucial role in retaining clients and/or growing firm revenue in 2018.

    Submit Executive

    Sales & Service Team of the Year
    This award goes to a team who played a crucial role in retaining or growing firm revenue in 2018. 

    Submit Team


    Awards will be presented by Hellerman Communications at the 16th Annual RainDance Conference June 5-6, 2019 in Chicago. Winners will receive one free registration to RainDance.

    Deadline: Thursday, February 28, 2019.

    Questions? Contact Kirsten Lovett



©2019 Legal Sales and Service Organization