Often, legal professionals find themselves being pulled in several directions at once. Clients are calling to ask questions and voice concerns, opposing counsel is doing everything in their power to throw a wrench in your strategy, court dates and scheduled appointments are all running against each other. On top of all of this, we are still parents, spouses and community members with all the responsibility that those roles entail.
With all of these different things happening at once, it can be easy for some attorneys to forget that one of the most important parts of our job is strengthening client relations and trust. After all, the clients are our whole business and a strong relationship with the client almost always spells success. Jack L. Jaffe keeps the attorney-client relationship at the top of his list of concerns. Here’s how we maintain a strong, positive working relationship that helps us win cases.
Clients Need Face-Time
Spending face-to-face time with clients is the best way to understand them and, therefore, their legal situation. Building a tactical plan, doing legal research and discussing complicated matters of precedence are all vital to winning a case. However, none of those things can replace quality time with a client.
We take the time to learn about the client in a personal way. We take the time to learn about who they are, how they live and how they came to be in a situation that has led to litigation. Knowing these things about the client goes a long way toward making them feel confident and secure, and also to winning their case.
Remembering That We Are the Professionals
We spend so much time in and out of courtrooms that it can be easy to forget just how jarring the legal process can be for many people. The reality is, most Americans will go their entire lives without ever entering a courthouse for anything other than a minor traffic violation.
We have to keep this in mind when we litigate on behalf of those who do find themselves needing our services. In many cases, a person has no idea they will need a lawyer before they actually do. We know that clients will not be dispassionate about their case. The client has not gone to court over 100 times like we have. As professionals, we know to keep a level head and not let emotions get the better of us, but the client does not. They will be emotional. They will feel like their entire life is riding on this case, whether or not that is true. It is our job to empathize with them and to use our experience to put them at ease.
We’re A Lot Like You
Lawyers tend to be naturally guarded people. We are usually not trained to reveal much about ourselves to each other or our clients. We, however, believe that a willingness to let some of that guard down and reveal our personality to the client goes a long way toward building a positive relationship.
This, of course, does not mean that we bare our souls and behave in any way that is not 100 percent professional. It means that we create an atmosphere of professional familiarity and understanding that allows our clients to feel more secure on a personal level.
We believe a strong attorney-client relationship makes for strong cases. Following these steps has helped us build a stronger connection with our clients for over 30 years.