5 Ways to Become a Business Development Pro

by | Jul 13, 2016

5 Ways to Become a Business Development Pro

According to LexisNexis data, it is estimated that law firms that improve their retention rate by five percent can increase their revenue rate by 25 percent. However, while many firms express interest in business development, some firms still struggle to figure out exactly what investments make the best business sense—and exactly how to achieve their business goals.

In order to succeed in business development and grow the firm, should the firm invest in additional business development professionals? Is the proper investment in better customer relationship management (CRM) technology that will provide better insight into relationships and business development activities? Or is the right choice a combination of both approaches?

According to industry experts, it really comes down to one thing—it’s all about successful interactions with clients and potential clients to win and retain business.

The good news is there are proven approaches to help law firms understand the business development capabilities needed to help firms win more business and meet the firm’s growth goals.  A recent three part Webinar Series titled: “Helping Lawyers Grow Sustainable Pipeline–Managing Opportunities, Relationships, and Yourself” provides a framework for implementing key business development strategies and attorney behaviors that can help firms improve their business development outcomes and, most importantly—build business.

5 Tips to Win and Grow More Business

The first webinar in the series focuses on “Managing Opportunities” to bring matters into the law firm.  While only 5-8 percent of lawyers are natural business development rainmakers, the great news for everyone else is that business development skills CAN be taught. The webinar leaders have successfully coached hundreds of lawyers in the art of initiating, maintaining and leveraging client relationships—and during the webinar they outline a 5 step course of action for lawyers to follow to help firms better manage the opportunity pipeline. Here are five simple steps attorneys can implement in their firms to win more business and grow firm revenue:

  • Listen
  • Create Curiosity
  • Build Things Together
  • Gain Approval
  • Land and Expand

The second webinar concentrates on “Managing Relationships” to help firm’s focus on building the right relationships. This webinar helps firms understand the ideal client relationship progression that will help grow each critical relationship from the “Target” phase into a “Raving Fan” who provides active referrals for to the firm.

The science points to critical influencers such as “Likability,” “Authority” and “Reciprocity” and the webinar leaders show the relationship progression steps where these factors have the greatest influence. The webinar presenter’s also explain the potential impact from technologies that give firms a complete view of existing relationships, the ability to track relationships and score relationship strength to gain insight into who knows a key target best.

The final webinar in the series explains the importance of “Managing Yourself” to facilitate the firm’s focus on business development at all times – even when attorneys are extremely busy. The final session helps attorneys build the right habits to succeed at business development even with limited time per week. It also explains the importance of business development and CRM technology to help track targets, send alerts and utilize reports and dashboards to help the firm stay on track with business development.

The lawyers who are most successful at business development display all 3 competencies—managing opportunities, managing relationships and managing their own activities. For those who are interested in learning more about these proven business development techniques, be sure to tune into the webinar recordings at the links below.

Webinar 1:  Managing Opportunities

Webinar 2:  Managing Relationships

Webinar 3:  Managing Yourself


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