I’ve had the pleasure of working with literally tens of thousands of lawyers, accountants, consultants and other professionals over the past decade – helping them to hone their BD skills. I’ve worked out where they tend to get stuck. Here are five key issues that come up time and time again.
Why not rate yourself: are any or all of these an issue for you?
1. Don’t be pushy; but do be persistent
We all know that the “hard sell” is horrible. So please don’t do that. But do follow-up. Do keep in touch. Regularly. And don’t chuck it too soon. Lack of response usually means they’re busy, rather than get lost. Be persistent.
2. Beware the lunch loop
Are you guilty of the “never sell”: stuck in the lunch loop? Same old contacts; endless calories; never any work chat? Building relationships is important but perhaps it’s now time to ask for a BD meeting?
3. Learn to love “no”
Business development is essentially a numbers game. Sometimes you’ll be rejected. Get over it. Nobody died. And at least you now know where you stand. Move on. Next please!
4. Make time for BD; get organised
You must have a list of all your key contacts, prospects, clients. And look at it. Regularly. And set simple action tasks for yourself. And sort out a BD folder: divide your BD activity into little mini projects and chunks. Diary time for BD. Make BD habitual.
5. JDI: the Nike approach
Just do it! Or as the Managing Partner of one law firm I work with says to his fellow partners “JFDI”! (he never did explain – “forceably”?) Step away from your desk. Go out. Network. Meet people. Follow-up. Write, email, call. Keep in touch. Have BD meetings. It’s not rocket science!
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about the author
Michael Fleming is our Head of KWC Legal. If you would like to know more about this subject, drop him an email and we will be in touch.