Building and maintaining client relationships are the cornerstone of a law firm to become successful. A client approaches a lawyer or law firm with the expectation that they will be heard and their problems will be solved. According to top lawyer Hamad Al- Yafei, “Law is a relationship-driven business and lawyers have to deliver a stellar client service to create a positive experience to attract and retain quality clients and business. Poor experience results in loss of revenue, it impacts client recommendations, and also dents the reputation which a firm cannot afford owing to the competitive nature of the business.”
Nowadays, a client expects more than just legal advice from his lawyer. They seek someone who can also anticipate their needs and act as a business advisor. Al- Yafei opines, “A client approaches us when they are in the midst of a very challenging time in their life and need guidance, support, and compassion. We need to step up and play additional roles to deliver an exceptional service. Making the client a priority and embracing a client service mindset as opposed to being business-minded helps to elevate the standing of the firm and receive loyalty in the form of repeat business, positive reviews, and referrals from a client.”
Discussing the impact a disgruntled client can have on the business, Al- Yafei shares, “It is imperative to keep improving the client-attorney relationship and avoid complaints in any form which could affect the standing of your firm and impact business from potential clients. Some ways to strengthen your association are:
- Always be honest with your client, irrespective of the situation. They trust you to solve their problems and believe in your guidance.
- Engage with your clients regularly as a lack of communication leads to feelings of disrespect and disappointments. Keep in constant touch with your clients and reply to messages, calls, and emails.
More than the credentials of the lawyer and law firm, today, the client hires a lawyer and the firm based on the testimonials and word-of-mouth feedback, which makes it imperative to connect with clients on a personal level apart from maintaining professional relations. The key is to invest time in business development to understand the client and his business completely for enhancing and strengthening the relationship. “The significance of client retention cannot be underestimated. A law firm needs to emphasize to its employees on the importance of building a rapport with the client, creating value, and using every tool at their disposal to provide outstanding service and gain client loyalty,” asserts Hamad Al- Yafei.