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December 06, 2006

Big Business preferring Small Firm Lawyers

Last year I met a woman who was the business manager for a large health care facility.  It was at a family social event, no business floating around.  However, when we got to talking and she learned I was a lawyer, she very eagerly asked what type of law I do.  As is my standard answer, "what kind of lawyer do you need?"  She told me they were looking for medium to small sized firms to handle their health care business.  I said, "Who do you use now?"  She named a very large firm.  Upon further inquiry, I subsequently learned that they were tired of the bureaucracy and billing of the large firms, never getting an answer to a question in a reasonable amount of time, the layers of people and the cost.  It lacked the personalization.  They had been experimenting with smaller firms, for less complicated matters, and reduced fees and were very pleased.  It was more personal, the lawyers were more accessible. 

I happened to know a solo who had a terrific health care background and asked this woman if she was amenable to receiving his resume.  She was.  They talked and she was very impressed.  He ultimately was not hired for budgetary issues but the point is the desire for this client to "connect" with her lawyer was great, even in a large business entity like this health care facility.

Third Wave Lawyer, Chuck Newton, recently posted a similiar commentary in terms of the benefits of hiring a Third Wave Lawyer and this is what triggered my mentioning this experience from last year.

Don't assume that because you are an individual or a two person law firm that the Big Fish in the ocean can't be caught by you.  Right now you have the food they are craving.  Just dangle it in front of their nose....often.  You have the flexibility, the availability and the skills, too.  You are just not wrapped in layers of lawyers, overhead, management and ego.  Happy fishing!!!


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Chuck Newton

Thanks for the honorable mention.

Lisa Patterson

Bravo - I'm a big firm deserter and exclusively represent clients in workers' compensation issues in OHIO and I routinely get selected for the personal attention. The most often comment I hear is that "I can't believe you returned my call so quickly." My only dilemma is getting in front of those big fish clients to showcase my services and highly competitive rate? Any suggestions? Thanks for the comment.

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