Clarence Sheftall, possibly the best law book salesman of our time, once said, "I never bought anything from someone I didn't like, even if I needed it."
As good as that advice is, many lawyers feel instead that clients don't need to like them, that results or the quality of the work are what matter. The lawyers' view of business relationships and work is somewhat misguided. It misses the point that in a professional engagement, the trust placed in you by the client is an essential part of the results, as well as how the client views the quality of the work.
Rapport (liking) leads to trust, and trust becomes the glue that binds the parties in a business relationship. Trust and likeability of the seller are two inseparable components necessary to make up a successful sale and a business relationship. Trust in this context means more than assuming the seller won't pick your pocket. Trust is what will make the buyer's interest the seller's number one priority.
To go along with that, firms must develop a sales culture. But that has been slow to happen. Despite the notable efforts of some firms to recruit "sales managers," the transition to a true sales culture still mystifies many law firms. There are seven reasons why. These are the missing links to sales—the strategies and tactics that the corporate world identified many decades ago and have become the guiding principles of our modern corporate sales cultures.
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