I am a business development and client service professional with twenty-one years of work experience in both public and private sector organizations. My primary focus over the past thirteen years has been business development and client relationship management in the legal services industry in which I work with individual lawyers as well as practice groups to develop strategic plans.
I work exclusively with lawyers. My general focus has been on partners, at all levels of their career, however, I have worked with senior associates and counsel as well
My business development coaching services are highly-personalized and typically involve a three phase process. The first phase, assessment, involves a significant amount of time getting to know the lawyer, their practice area, firm culture, and understanding and assessing the business development and marketing skills the lawyer wants to improve or develop. The assessment phase includes an extensive interview with the individual being coached and can also include, if appropriate, additional interviews with their corresponding practice leadership. The second phase includes developing a detailed business development plan that clearly identifies the agreed upon goals and action steps the lawyer should take to achieve their business development objectives. During the third phase, the plan is implemented with regular follow-up conversations between me and the client to execute on the plan, gauge progress, and fine tune action steps where necessary. I serve as a strategic advisor and confidant during the coaching engagement, providing ongoing support and counsel as the lawyer addresses challenging situations in real time. Engagements can run from three months up to a year depending on the services requested.
I expect that my clients are motivated and committed to doing what it takes to develop and execute on a plan to build their book of business. My goal is to be as efficient as possible and save clients time. Clients get the most out of the process by being responsive, maintaining meetings, and dedicating an agreed upon amount of time to the effort.
Depending on the nature of the engagement, it can be extremely helpful for me to speak with practice and marketing leadership to gain an understanding of firm culture and the strategic direction of the practice where the lawyer being coached resides.
Expanding business with current clients: Worked with a client to identify additional opportunities within his current base of clients. He felt that he could expand relationahips with a few of his clients, but wasn’t quite sure how to go about approaching the clients in a meaningful way. We set about doing a comprehensive review of his (and the firm’s) relationship with the clients. I conducted extensive research on the clients and their industries to identify potential opportunities for the lawyer, and we selected two areas where we felt would be most impactful for each of the clients. My client met with his clients and discussed the two areas we identified and additionally proposed a new fee structure inclusive of his current work and new proposed work for the clients. The partner was successful in expanding his engagements with several of his clients.
Internal relationship building: Worked with a client who had a niche practice and felt that she could expand her work beyond the practice group that she primarily worked with. We worked to develop a plan that would build her internal brand. I conducted extensive research to identify specific practice/industry areas where she could have immediate synergies, and we crafted several elevator statements that would demonstrate how she could help clients in those areas. We also identified several internal tools/vehicles for her to market herself to her fellow partners. Our efforts resulted in multiple referrals and several new matters for my client.
I believe that open and honest communication regarding goals and expectations is key to a successful coaching relationship. I have to be honest in communicating any obstacles I see that may have been preventing a client from being successful in their business development efforts. Additionally, I need my clients to be open with me in terms of my coaching style and what works best for them as this feedback ensures that I tailor my approach.
Fees vary based on a range of coaching services. Hourly and fixed price rates are available.