Are lawyers also salespeople?
If you asked one of them directly, they’d likely scrunch up their face as if they’d just heard an awful verdict from the bench.
But the truth is in this day and age the legal profession is as competitive as any other (if not more so) for new business. Why do you think that every non-profit board contains, at least, one lawyer? It’s likely just not out of the goodness of their collective hearts.
So why do many lawyers and firms resist the idea of sales training to get an advantage over their competition? Especially when their industry and its marketing is so tightly regulated and scrutinized?
Maybe it’s the word “sales” itself? In many cases, law firms and their partners just can’t get past the “head trash” of thinking of themselves as salespeople using “sales techniques” to get new business. Perhaps, they think to themselves “after all the hard work in law school and as an associate, now I’m just a salesperson?”
The truth is the future of their firms and their livelihood is based on their ability to acquire and form lasting relationships. While they might not want to view it as “selling” it does include basic sales and Sandler principles including referrals, networking and yes even direct prospecting.
We need to help lawyers reframe the way they think so they can get comfortable with the idea. Instead of sales they might be more comfortable with the idea of developing relationships.
In either case, the Sandler Rules apply.