Did you know that what happens at a networking event can trigger ethics issues? Let’s talk about some of the ethics issues.
Networking is the art and skill of creating relationships and then being able to leverage those relationships into business opportunities. And let me just say that Rainmaking = Relationships. Let’s talk about how to do this effectively.
Networking and the networks you build are not one way streets. You cannot go to your network and ask for help without being willing or able to offer help as well.
One of the laws that they do not teach you in law school is called the Law of Reciprocity. Are you obeying the law?
“Networking is an ongoing dynamic process.” You need to identify your needs (purpose), integrate the information you hear from others and adapt your process of networking based on the new information you have received. And it can be a very different experience if you are heading back to the practice of law now that the nest is empty.
Have you ever heard the advice, “Never eat lunch alone?” That’s what they teach sales people who need to schmooze clients and referral sources in order to get new business. It’s not bad advice, but it is woefully incomplete.
It is not enough to simply go to lunch with people you like and call it networking. It’s not enough to show up at chamber of commerce meetings, bar association luncheons, and networking happy hours. In the world of networking, the “work” piece is the important part. This is how I get clients.
Amazon transformed the retail industry by networking small businesses together. It eventually replaced the individuality of each small business with it’s own ‘brand’, Amazon. Eventually, small businesses were able to reduce their overhead further by cutting out their physical real estate, cutting employees and simply marketing and selling their goods through Amazon. This on-demand online company is a ‘networked platform’ and meets the customer where they are. Imagine a network for lawyers that has nothing to do with a commercially branded company, but through bar associations, or through certain law schools or an AmLaw 100 firm. Imagine a network for solos in a given state or region. Imagine a network driven by the lawyers. This is an eye-opening guest lecture which will help you to envision practicing the way you want to practice. Listen and learn.
This post was written by Ian E. Scott. Ian E. Scott is a Harvard Law School Graduate, lawyer and author of Law School Lowdown: Secrets of Success from the Application Process to Landing Your First Job. (Barron’s Publishing). Law School Lowdown: is a comprehensive law school guide that contains several important tips regarding law school […]
(Update: Interesting update to this story as Sara has had an interview, a potential part-time opportunity with the firm and, before they will consider hiring her she must write a marketing plan on how she will seek out business for the firm in her desired practice area). In June I had the distinct pleasure of […]
I have a confession to make. Up until last year, I was a bad networker. When I started my solo practice, I didn’t have a network. Two years out of the work force, many of my relationships were stale. It was also pretty apparent that most of those connections were geared to an in-house practice […]
A friend of mine and I were talking recently about the move to cloud computing and storage (also known as SaaS for “software as a service”) and how often lawyers are slow to adopt new technologies. He’s not a lawyer, but quite experienced in technology, and frankly he’s amazed that lawyers would even question whether […]