Many lawyers struggle to learn business development skills, in no small part because they don’t embrace the need to get better at it. Try some of these self-talk techniques to help you overcome inertia and get started.
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For many lawyers, the thought of business development is the very bane of their existence. Even the most "gifted" rainmakers occasionally experience a sense of "Oh, my gosh, another year, another mountain to climb." As the legal business becomes more fiercely competitive, it can be daunting--and darn right discouraging--to face the challenge of meeting and exceeding 2017's business goals.
There's hope, provided you're realistic.
Selling is a learned skill, which means anyone can become good at it if they commit to it. Like any other skill, some will have more difficulty than others learning it, but anyone can learn. Cultivating these traits and mindsets will accelerate your learning curve and raise the ceiling on how good you can become.
When it comes to getting, keeping, and growing large accounts, the day of the lone-wolf rainmaker has passed, never to return. That worked during the 25-year law boom because everybody was buying legal services. In the buyer's market that will be with you for the rest of your career, you need to ferret out, investigate, and validate potential opportunity continuously. You need more hands on the oars, just to defend and sustain what you already have.