Jury Duty and Agency New Business Reminders

Jury duty. Don’t know about you, but this is not something a one-man band looks forward to. Put me in a room without internet access or a power outlet, make me turn off the celly, and give me food options that come from hitting “B5” – sounds like a GREAT use of valuable, BILLABLE time!

Thankfully, yours truly was excused. But not before being called into a court room and watching the lawyers, platiffs and defendants for a few hours move through jury selection. Of course, it made me think about new business!

I had an instant dislike for the plaintiff’s lawyer. After learning more, the whole case, in fact, felt like it was frivolous. Yet, like just about everyone else, I lamely said I could, in fact, give these poor litigants a fair shake. Not true. Because it’s hard not to be moved  by first impressions. This is human nature. From a new business perspective, this reminded me of a few things for you, you, you to think about in your next pitch:

  • You are being evaluated by everything you do. Every voice-mail and email. Not only what you say, but how you say it. Your clothing, even, is part of the total impression you are making to a prospective client. Yes, it’s easy to argue that some stuff doesn’t matter as much. But understanding reality and making it work for you can play a big role in how you win.
  • You can’t make it about you. It’s got to be about them. More than one juror candidate thought the lawyer was all about himself. It was HIS show, not the plaintiff’s. Or, his audience, the jury’s.
  • Avoid being flashy for flashy’s sake. It was clear the plaintiff’s lawyer was the best dressed person in the room. He enjoyed the spotlight and spoke like he was on a stage. But this guy lacked authenticity. A no-no.
  • You gotta prepare. On the other hand, I’ll say one thing about this lawyer. He sure knew his stuff. He was actively listening, could read the room and was thoroughly prepared for the case. In either pitching or prospecting, agencies have terrific opportunities to do homework and reflect that understanding.

Anywho, you get the idea. As always, your comments and additional sage wisdom more than welcome!