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Most lawyers will tell you they are result focused, that is they are in the business of getting the result their client wants. That all sounds well and good when the lawyer can exercise a measure of certainty of control over the client’s matter. But what if there is no certainty of control, what if the client wants something which hasn’t been done before, what if there is no source of precedent for the lawyer to refer to? This creates a special challenge for a lawyer, and in the eyes of their client their quality as a lawyer in dealing with a challenge not entirely in their hands should not be defined only by the quality of their result. After all, most clients are reasonable people; they know a lawyer cannot guarantee success.
What does the lawyer do faced with this situation? Or, more directly, what do we do as a law firm in these circumstances?
The answer is: we innovate. What we mean by this is twofold. First, we give our client absolute confidence in our professional ability by demonstrating we understand his goal, by identifying in advance what might hinder getting the result he wants, working out how it may be fixed and developing a step-by-step strategy towards achieving that aim. Here we would draw on the depth of experience of our lawyers, particularly in the commercial and tax sphere, and their profound knowledge of company law and its application. Second, and this is very important, we give the client what we call “quality of experience”. If our client’s matter cannot be controlled because it is out of our hands, then we can certainly give our client absolute satisfaction with everything else which is within our control. This involves giving our client regular updates (whether prompted or not), responding quickly to his calls and correspondence and generally going the “extra mile” to make our client feel calm and comfortable that his matter is being handled correctly and efficiently by the best and most powerful people available.
So, even if the conclusion of the clients matter is not to his satisfaction, then at least he should be satisfied with our firm, the level of service provided, and the manner in which we have represented his interests.
Although it may be true to say that most lawyers are by nature conservative in character and professional disposition, we impress upon our own lawyers that innovation is the key to success.