An experienced lawyer can tell you how meeting with clients is one of the essential parts of my job. However, it’s also one of the most stressful aspects because so many things could go wrong. This article will help you prepare for your first meeting with a client so that nothing goes easy and explain the value of a case management system.
Confirm the appointment.
Confirm the time and date of the meeting. Confirm that you have received all materials from your client, including any discovery or documents related to their case. Confirm who will be in attendance at the meeting and any other persons who may need to be present (for example, an interpreter). Finally, confirm where to meet and ensure it is accessible for everyone involved in the case.
Always remember to show up early.
- Always remember to show up early. Come at least a few minutes before your appointment so that you have time to get ready and ensure you have all of the materials you need for the meeting.
- If you are running late, ensure that someone will be there for them if they arrive early. This is always better than showing up unprepared!
Do a brief research on the person you are meeting.
- Do a brief research on the person you are meeting. It is essential to know who you are meeting and what they do, as well as their background, interests and hobbies. If a client tells you that they have a child in Grade 5, or they like to golf on the weekend or play hockey with their friends—all of these can be topics for conversation during your meeting.
- Show up prepared. The client may have different expectations than what is written in your contract, so come prepared for anything that might come up!
Gather all the files and materials you need and put them in a folder.
Before meeting a legal client, gathering all the files and materials you need and putting them in a folder is essential. This way, all of your materials are organized and easily accessible.
When meeting with clients, it’s also helpful to have an electronic case management system where you can store information from each visit with the client in one place so that you can refer back to it later. This will reduce the struggle of finding and organizing essential files to present in the meeting.
Meetings can be pretty stressful, but if you are prepared, there is no reason for them to turn out bad.
Meetings can be pretty stressful, but if you are prepared, there is no reason for them to turn out bad. Meets are a great way to build relationships with clients and help them feel comfortable. The more meetings you have in person, the more likely they are to trust your firm, and it will make it easier for them to hire you again in the future.
To prepare properly before each meeting:
- Confirm the appointment.
- Arrive on time.
- Bring all materials necessary.
- Prepare questions ahead, so you don’t waste any time at the end of the meeting trying to think of one last question.
- Use this as an opportunity if something has gone wrong between services provided or costs incurred.
Take it easy. You have done your homework and are ready to meet a new client. Everything is going to be fine!