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  • May 17, 2021 10:36 AM | Deleted user

    By Darryl Cross

    The biggest challenge for business development (BD) at law firms for the past 10 years was the same as it will be over the next 18 months: producing success at scale. The difference in the defined time frame is purposeful. As the pace of innovation accelerates and client expectations compound, the need to deliver results becomes more time compressed. Clients have problems, and they have unlimited options. It is critical to bring the discipline of sales enablement to law firm BD departments.

    What is sales enablement? The Association for Talent Development ( defines it as:

    “the strategic and cross functional effort to increase the productivity of market-facing teams by providing ongoing and relevant resources throughout the buyer journey to drive business impact. It encompasses sales training, coaching, content creation, process improvement, talent development, and compensation, among other areas.”

    BD executives have always strived to implement 1-2 of these components at a time, but it has been a challenge to tackle them all simultaneously. However, expecting sales to occur with a patchwork of initiatives and cohorts is hopeful at best. 

    BD departments without a holistic sales enablement function are reactive in nature and precedent driven. They are constantly cooking to order and little institutional knowledge is gained from each challenge. And, they are only training and coaching a couple dozen lawyers at a time, which is a method that will take decades to complete.

    It is called a discipline of sales enablement because it requires discipline to implement it. BD executives must resist the urge to take on 1-2 components per year (e.g., “This is the year we will train our lawyers on business development…” or “Let’s put together some client teams…”). It is a better approach to combine the entire sales enablement suite of services and focus it all on a small subset of clients.

    This extreme focus is a refrain that is more respected today. Firms are building strategic account teams to pay attention to the needs of their most valuable clients. Industry groups that monitor trends specific to clients with similar issues. Some firms have created “Client Index Funds” that are diverse selections of 20-30 clients across practices, offices, and industries that represent their most profitable engagements.

    If this task seems daunting, technology can help. Choose a robust sales enablement software platform such as Seismic ( that can bring marketing, sales, and operations together. Use a video role play software such as Rehearsal ( to allow lawyers and BD executives to practice and coach together. Leverage your CRM system to share everything about a select group of clients and prospects.

    By creating a complete sales enablement approach, the results will follow. Your department will be able to scale their efforts over time, better predict client needs, and enhance collaboration. Most importantly, it allows the BD function to demonstrate results. Happenstance BD management, methodologies, and processes are no longer valid. Run your BD like your clients run theirs. The discipline of sales enablement creates momentum. Hop on board.

    Darryl Cross is a Fellow of the College of Law Practice Management and 20-year veteran of the legal industry who speaks at law firm and corporate events on cultivating high performance cultures. He is now with Amazon Web Services where he is building and inventing their worldwide Sales Academy.

  • May 13, 2021 12:02 PM | Deleted user

    The Fenwick & West marketing department has an opening for a Senior Business Development Coordinator (Mergers & Acquisitions) who will further the firm’s business development efforts through support of specific practice groups, individual partners, senior business development staff and oversight of business development coordinators and assistants. This position can be based in any of their offices.  Learn More!

  • May 10, 2021 12:30 PM | Deleted user

    Fenwick & West has an opening in their Marketing Department for a Senior Communications Specialist. The Senior Specialist will be responsible for leading, managing and supporting numerous strategic projects and initiatives furthering our external and internal communications goals. This job can be based in any of their offices. 
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  • May 07, 2021 12:16 PM | Deleted user

    Have you ever wondered how your firm stacks up against others when it comes to pitches and proposals, client teams, sales coaching, key account programs, RFP processes, and other interactions with clients that are designed to drive revenue? Well, here’s your chance to find out…

    LSSO is launching the industry’s first ever survey focused exclusively on “sales” within law firms, the 2021 Legal Sales Maturity Survey. We are inviting you to participate. The survey should take no more than 10-15 minutes for you to complete, and in exchange we will send you a copy of the survey report when completed.

    Please click below to complete the survey by May 28th. All answers will remain anonymous.


  • May 06, 2021 11:35 AM | Deleted user

    Fenwick & West has a terrific opportunity for a  Director of Communications.  This position may be based in any Fenwick U. S. office.  The Director of Communications is responsible for the quality, cost and business impact of the firm’s externally and internally facing content.  Read More.

  • April 20, 2021 10:28 AM | Deleted user

    LSSO's Global Sales Summit is filled with high-level interactive sessions, roundtables and lively discussions with industry thought leaders in the legal industry.  Over 30 experts from around the globe have been gathered.

    The Global Sales Summit offers less of the theory and more of the practical, effective sales and service strategies for attendees to bring back to their firm and implement immediately. With this special online program, you can expect open and honest dialogue among the attendees about the challenges they face in meeting the demands of the increasingly competitive and evolving industry.LSSO's Global Sales Summit is for law firm leaders who have significant responsibilities for client retention, client growth, new business development, client service, and process improvement strategies to shape the future of their firms.

    LSSO member's receive 20% off. Please contact for additional information and to receive your member coupon.  

    Reserve Your Ticket Now!

  • April 19, 2021 12:50 PM | Deleted user

    Paul Hastings has an opening for a Business Development Manager to support the Litigation Department. This position may be located in Paul Hastings' Palo Alto or San Francisco office.

    Read More

    The Business Development Manager supports the overall business development and marketing efforts of the Firm by helping to create and execute strategic and tactical business development and marketing activities related to specific practice groups and/or markets/geographies, in addition to managing a small team of one or more business development professionals to implement plans and initiatives.

  • March 31, 2021 4:27 PM | Deleted user

    2020 and now into 2021 has been described with more adjectives than I ever thought existed. Most were not complimentary, and most had four letters. But if we borrow the phrase:  “You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.” (Saul Alinsky's "Rules for Radicals" is responsible for this quote and re-phrased by Rahm Emanuel.)

    What lessons can we take away from the 2020 pandemic and apply them to legal sales and marketing in the future?  

    WFA – Work from Anywhere: Historically, most firms have used a business model of “nesting” their people in offices. The ability to work one or two days from home was considered a real perk. Whether that was just a long-time cultural norm, a distrust that the staff could not be trusted out of sight, or something in between, this model has been forcibly changed. 

    Today – We have found that people can work effectively from home, and they can also actually work quite effectively from anywhere. Homes, vacation homes, riding a Peloton, or walking a treadmill are all common. I have a Director level friend at a major firm who rented out his house and has been traveling the country for nine months living in Airbnbs. 

    Future – Offices will reopen but unlikely to pre-pandemic levels as WFA is now a recruiting tool as well as a way of life. 

    Meeting Protocol: Meetings in law firm offices have always had a formal air to them. Suits, catered food, information packets neatly stacked on high-class conference tables, and screens dropped from hidden places in the ceiling. Genuinely nice, and sometimes a bit pretentious.  

    Today – Welcome to Zoom Life and Teams World. Crying babies and barking dogs are now as common a part of meetings as the catered food and other amenities.  This has added a refreshing informality to most meetings that allows us to really get to know people on a much deeper level. Seeing the photos on the wall, guitar in the corner, the snow out the window, and the pets and kids allows us to know peers and clients at a much greater level that most of us have come to appreciate. 

    Future - Maybe this is how business in the legal industry should and will be done? 

    Cloud Readiness: Firms that were well-prepared and already had data and systems in the cloud allowed attorneys and staff to grab their laptops and not miss a beat in the WFA world, creating a significant advantage. We want to think every firm had this type of agility, but not so. More than one firm shuttled files between the attorneys’ homes and offices by staff. The office culture of “nesting” also lends itself to on-premises data centers and desktop, immobile computers. Clients were impacted by firms not prepared. Prepared firms had the opportunity to gain some competitive advantage.

    Today This was a tough lesson on many firms as it not only created chaos internally and demonstrated to clients how ill-prepared their legal counsel was in a crisis.  The real test here was how agile are we to think, plan, execute, operate the business, and still serve clients in the manner they need and deserve.

    Future – Clients will ask about Pandemic readiness in RFPs and ask to see how firms operate in a crisis. 

    Crisis Communication Readiness: In the early days when offices first closed, the command from the top to every marketing team was “let all of our clients know we are open for business and ready to take care of them.”  What seems like a simple request, and probably was for some firms, but for many, was a fire-drill nightmare. Based on the emergency calls we received, the firm’s anecdotal data had a ready-to-go, current list of client contacts was not a simple request. 

    Today – Not having the most up-to-date contact information was another tough lesson for many firms. However, on the bright side, there is now a strong business case to firm leadership to invest in basic marketing communications (“MarCom”) blocking and tackling type things. For example, keeping contact data up-to-date and well-organized and having operable CRM systems had a bright light shined on it. 

    Future –2021 looks like a boom year for Marketing Technology, Practice Management Technology, and the ability to operate all of it in the cloud and deliver on a moment’s notice. 

    Work-Life Balance - Forced time off and moving out of the nest has sparked the desire for more quality time, and rethinking work-life balance lightened practice loads. Professionals and their staff have evaluated how they want to live moving forward and how they will define the value of workforce freedom and flexibility.

    Today – Firms have (or should have) learned attorneys and staff can not only function but can operate in a highly productive fashion without the need for a “nest.” 

    Future – WFA and the desire for work-life balance are changing all industries in more ways than we can begin to know. In legal, this certainly opens new opportunities to recruit both legal and support staff without geographic boundaries. Conversely, lawyers and staff will migrate to firms where WFA and work-life are a part of the culture and not seen as an inconvenience to the firm.

    Personal – The pandemic tragically impacted many people.  On a personal level, the Covid-19 pandemic has made me very aware of how fortunate I am considering all the tragedy. I am sorry it took a pandemic to help me realize this. I regret something I wish I had done differently: I did not stay in touch with all my friends as I should have. Early on, we had Zoom happy hours and made some effort, but it faded. It always seemed to be something I would do tomorrow. I owe many of you.

    On to the next three quarters of 2021...

    Dave Whiteside is Director of Client Growth & Success at CLIENTSFirst. Dave is a consultant for CRMData QualityeMarketing and Client Intelligence service offerings as well as leads ClientsFirst business development and Alliance programs.  

  • March 17, 2021 12:19 PM | Deleted user

    Fenwick is seeking a Senior Business Development Coordinator (Litigation & Intellectual Property) who will further the firm’s business development efforts through support of specific practice groups, individual partners, and senior business development staff. This position can be based in any of our offices. 

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