It is held to be a universal truth in football that it is harder to retain a league title than it is to win just one.
Jose Mourinho famously said, “Good teams win titles, but great teams retain them”. Makes sense. And acquisition and retention, albeit in the form of clients, is definitely something we are seeing more law firms focusing on in 2022.
If it’s not broken, don’t fix it…?
It is far more complicated for champions to strengthen their side than it is for their rivals. Winning the league is a veil; it means that even a flawed team has a legitimacy, that even those players whom a manager believes might be improved upon most easily have a right to keep their place. Football has always believed that you do not change a winning formula, that if something is not broken, you do not fix it, even when actually it might be rather more broken than it first appears.
The same can be said for law firms. Firms sometimes don’t know there are better ways to work. They do quite well, they’re bringing in fees, so all is well. But not adapting to a changing environment can be costly. And as much as many lawyers and law firms have formed great relationships and in many cases friendships, the desire of your rivals is to win, to do better, to catch and overhaul the firm that did better than them the previous year. That is a powerful emotional impulse, particularly when combined with a freedom to change their working practices to address their problems.
A taste for success
Great football managers often talk about a hunger for trophies. Brian Clough always said that the most important triumph in his time at Nottingham Forest was not the league title or the European Cup, but the 1977 Anglo-Scottish Cup, because that was the one that set the team on the way to further glory, which included two European Cups. That first gave them a taste for success. This is called the “Champagne Effect.”
For law firms to change and succeed can be difficult. Mainly because as friendly as you might be with the firm at the opposite end of the High St, you really don’t know what they’re up to internally. You don’t know what they’re planning, the trends they are following or the work the backroom staff are doing to get their team ready to not just compete, but to potentially take the title! But what you can do is create small wins to give you that taste for success.
Many of the law firms we speak to are gearing up and restructuring their business for a busy year. One even used the term, “Its Game On!”, hence the title of this article. The trend we’re seeing is that the introduction and/or expansion of ‘New Business Teams’ (NBTs) are going to be business critical for law firms.
We’ve heard so many law firms talking about this, and many are now adopting a dedicated New Business Team to enhance and structure their sales processes. Primarily because the importance of tracking the marketing spend and conversion values can’t be underestimated in today’s market. Firms are becoming laser focused on not only driving new business but improving comms and analysing their client data to ensure they retain them.
Change your tactics
The general rule that successful firms are following is that if the cost of client acquisition is too expensive for the work the client is paying you for then it’s time to change tactics.
The trouble with law firms is they are normally hired for a one off piece of work for a client and struggle to sell other services to enhance the income stream they worked hard to sign up. The enthusiasm to try and structure this process and retain business weans because most firms are busy and believe they don’t have the time. This may be true, but the amount of money being lost and the likelihood of you falling way down the law firm league table because you don’t focus on this growth area is going to make our break the long term success of your business.
Here are 3 key areas you need to consider to succeed in the NBT challenge:
- Methodology and Process – how to do it within the context of your work types, legal knowledge and customers.
- People and Organisation – are you structured in the right way for success, with the right people owning the right things?
- Systems and Resources – using the right tech and resources is critical, and ensuring your software includes a dedicated way to Intake, Track & Convert enquires easily.
Denovo’s “Champagne Effect”
It’s a law firm leaders’ job to teach their team to be hungry for success. It’s Denovo’s job to give your team the “The Champaign Effect”. In other words, we’ll show you how using the right technology to manage new business and retain existing clients will help your law firm be successful. Coupled with great people and a structured process we’ll give you the efficiency and data you need to see success. We’ll give you some wins.
If you’re ready to change your tactics, call us on 0141 331 5290, or if you would prefer to write to us our email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
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