It’s what many would call a dream job: a respected attorney that’s worked with the world’s most talented rock and roll acts. This is just another day in the life of John Branca who has represented over 30 acts in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. While his clients are the exception, attorneys should know how to relate to their clients, famous or not. Here are several ways to cement the attorney-client bond.
Drawing on Life Experience
Finding common ground with a client gains their trust and enables you both to work better together. For example John Branca, the entertainment lawyer that’s represented talent from Michael Jackson to the Rolling Stones, explains that his experience writing and playing music has given him a better understanding of his unique clients.
Remaining Responsive to Clients
Another way to relate to clients is remaining responsive throughout your time together. Return calls and emails before the end of the day if possible, even if it’s just to let them know you got the call. Unless you’ve recently been introduced, you’ve probably got an idea of their expectations. Some clients want minimal interaction, while others need constant reassurance such as with a defamation case. Be prepared to meet them halfway.
Using Clear Communication
For any relationship to succeed, personal or otherwise, communication is key. Due to the sometimes urgent nature of a legal relationship, clear communication is not only helpful, but it’s also necessary. Always have several ways of getting in touch with your client and they should know how to reach you. Communication works both ways so listen carefully when a client has questions. Even if you’ve heard it a million times before, it’s brand new to a client.
Remembering Your Client Is a Person
It’s important for attorneys to see their clients as people and not as legal issues. Legal situations can come with a lot of emotions, so be prepared for your clients to express themselves whether they get good news or bad. Keep in mind that your client trusts you to have a solution whether the outcome is positive or negative, so be prepared to offer them additional advice or resources.
Whether your client is a rock star or your next-door neighbor, relating to him or her isn’t just good for business, it makes life easier for everyone. Finding common ground, being responsive, and good communication makes all the difference.