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I L T A W H I T E P A P E R | K N O W L E D G E M A N A G E M E N T 23 D o you want to gain new clients and keep the ones you have? Then you can't overestimate the importance of respect. It's a commodity which can get you "over the line" in a myriad of personal and business situations. Of course it's easy to talk about respect, but harder to build it. It can't be forced, but there are several building blocks. One of the foundation stones is making people feel valued and important. In a professional context, one way this can be done is by making clients feel you're listening to them, so if they've told you something which matters to them, you should remember it. You can also make clients feel important by showing you know them; where they work and what they work on are good places to start. It's also key to acknowledge feedback and realise when things haven't gone as well as they could have. If for whatever reason you have delivered less than excellent service, it goes a long way if you make a conspicuous effort to make it up to clients. When you demonstrate respect for the client it shows them that they're a contact who matters to the law firm. Respect can be demonstrated in a number of ways and by different areas of the firm. For example, marketing can show respect by understanding the contact, what they're interested in, not sending irrelevant mailers or event invitations, and ensuring preferences and special requirements are remembered. Meanwhile lawyers can show clients respect by setting time aside to meet with them when possible and by understanding their wider context when having B Y S I M O N E LV E N Making it into the Circle of Trust: How Marketing and Business Development Systems Can Help

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