What if “more clients” isn’t what you need most?

What if finding “more clients” isn’t your golden ticket?

Many lawyers tell themselves “If I only had more clients my life would be better. I’d be making more money. And when I make more money, I’ll have the time I need, and I can have a better life”. 

If your focus is just “more clients” then the answer is maybe, maybe not.

If you want to grow and make a profit, you need more of the right clients. Growing a profitable business requires the right clients – not just any clients.

And that’s where many lawyers fail.

You see, “doing marketing” to get new clients and generate revenue is simply a means to an end. And that end should be making a profit – not just accumulating clients. Yes, you need top-line revenue. And you have to pay attention to expenses as well. If you’re losing money on your clients then more clients aren’t the answer.

I still remember where I was when one of our new sales reps was trying to convince the VP of my division to agree to pricing for a customer. The VP, Harry, asked him this question:   “Wait a minute. Do you mean you want us to lose money on each transaction, and make it up in volume?”  The salesperson was silent for a moment. Knowing something was wrong. And then he got it.

Business is about profit. The law business is the same way. More clients, without more profit, is not the answer.  It was that way when I started working with a new attorney-client, Peter.

Peter believed that if he got more clients he’d have more money to take home at the end of the year. He focused tons of time and resources to get more clients. And he was successful – to a point. Sadly, he didn’t have more money to take home at the end of the year. He wondered, “What went wrong”

It’s a pretty common mistake. He took all kinds of different clients – really whoever had a legal problem who could pay. He spent a lot of money to get those clients. And even more money to pay the expenses to do the work because he was always shifting gears – he never had enough of one kind of work to allow him to get efficient.  Sure, he had a very diverse general practice. He loved the variety that came with it. But he wasn’t making enough money.

To make matters worse, because he wasn’t selective about his clients, he had significant collection problems. The clients didn’t pay what they agreed to pay when they agreed to pay it. He had to write off fees or chase clients for payment – which cost more money.

Once the problem was clear, he did the work necessary to fix the problem and bring his practice around.

Don’t fall into the trap that Peter did – assuming that more clients would translate into more money and more profits. There is much more to running a profitable business. And that’s what the law is these days – a business. And that’s ok.  

Once you know the rules of the game – and how to run the plays – you can play to win. Having the right team around you, and a coach to guide you makes the process so much easier.

If you’re ready to play to win – and you’d like to know exactly what that looks like for your practice then we should talk. Click here to find out what you can do to get started