Tried, Tested & Triumphant: Khashayar Law Group Secures Position as One of Southern California’s Top... 7 Ways to Make Billing More Effective: Lawyers may practice in different areas of the law and serve a wide range of clients, but... Protecting Your Firm from Ransomware: Ransomware attacks are affecting every type of business in America, and law firms are no... 5 Things to Ask Before You Say Yes To a Speaking Gig: Most professionals have a complicated relationship with public speaking—particularly if... 3 Biggest Leadership Mistakes People Make Today: One of the best leadership qualities that a manager can have is the ability to build up... California Case Summaries Civil™.: Organized Succinct Summaries of Some New CaliforniaCivil Cases - CALIFORNIA SUPREME COURT... Convert Unhappy Clients into Fans: Clients can become upset with us for many reasons, some of which are within our control,... Community News – August 2017: A San Francisco federal judge has appointed CaseyGerry’s managing partner David S.... DLTS Law. From the Ashes of the Recession.: D’Egidio Licari Townsend & Shah, APC’s unusual beginningsspark evolution of... How to Create an Email Law Alert. Powerful Marketing Tool Replaces Printed Newsletters.: Thanks to email, you can now write and distribute a weekly Law Alert without buying a...
Cole Casey - small banner

How to Look Like An Expert

A few days ago, I met a talented corporate transactional lawyer. Let’s call him Steve (because that is his name). He is smart, personable and knowledgeable about his area of the law. He has a terrific reputation and a significant body of work. On paper, this guy is one of the top transactional lawyers in the state.
Unfortunately, law is not practiced on paper. It is practiced in real life.
Steve showed up for his meeting with me in a golf shirt and tan pants. His cell phone was clipped to his belt and he had a goatee that looked like it had not been trimmed in at least six months. When we ate lunch, he chewed with his mouth open, spoke with his mouth full and used the wrong fork.
During lunch, Steve confessed that he meets with lots of potential clients that never end up hiring him.
Steve was meeting with me to see if I could help him turn his extensive knowledge into money in the bank. He was looking for some magic phrase or technique that would help him sign up more clients. Unfortunately, Steve does not know what his true problem is.
Steve’s problem is something many lawyers face. He just doesn’t look like an expert.
Steve has a problem with his personal brand. To a corporate CEO or General Counsel, Steve looks like a middle manager. He doesn’t look like a lawyer who specializes in sophisticated mergers. He looks like the guy who is dating their daughter and not the guy who will help them handle the Securities and Exchange Commission regulations.
To make things clear for Steve, I thought I would share some guidelines that I have developed to help my clients look like experts. Keep in mind that MOST lawyers will not follow these. That is because they are AVERAGE. If you want to be perceived as being average then you should ignore these as well.

How to Look Like an Expert: A Guide for Steve
Shave. Lounge magicians, beatnik poets and high school kids have goatees. Just because you can grow a beard does not mean you should. Look at the CEOs in the Fortune 500. How many do you see with goatees? If you insist on having a goatee, trim it daily.
Lose the belt clip. You are not a Christmas tree with ornaments hanging from your appendages. You should not have a phone hanging from your belt. Put it in your pocket like the rest of the non-senior citizens. If it is too big to fit in your pocket, leave it in the car or buy a smaller phone.
Stop talking. Ask a question then shut up and listen for the answer. Experts impress people with the questions they ask even more than with the information they share.
Eat like a human. Do not chew with your mouth open or talk with your mouth full.
Dress better than the client. If the client is casual, you should have on a jacket and slacks. If the client is in a jacket and slacks, you should have on a suit and tie. If the client has on a suit and tie you should have on an impeccably pressed suit, designer tie, and unique cufflinks (and/or a pocket square). You always want to dress one level above the client. Psychologically, it positions you as an expert.
These five tips are a great start toward improving your personal brand. Keep in mind that you have to dress and act like an expert in order to be treated like an expert.

David V. Lorenzo

David V. Lorenzo is the Chairman and Founder of Rainmaker Lawyer Consulting. He and his team help attorneys “make a great living and live a great life.” If you’d like a FREE CD from Dave, titled: The Five Secrets to Making a Great Living and Living a Great Life as a Lawyer, visit: www.LawyerSecretsCD.com or call 888.692.5531

More Posts

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Shout it
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter
Google Buzz (aka. Google Reader)
PDF24    Send article as PDF   

Filed Under: Personal Development

About the Author: David V. Lorenzo is the Chairman and Founder of Rainmaker Lawyer Consulting. He and his team help attorneys “make a great living and live a great life.” If you’d like a FREE CD from Dave, titled: The Five Secrets to Making a Great Living and Living a Great Life as a Lawyer, visit: www.LawyerSecretsCD.com or call 888.692.5531

RSSComments (0)

Trackback URL

Leave a Reply

  • Polls
    Sorry, there are no polls available at the moment.