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Jan Copley
Certified Practice Advisor
Atticus, Inc.

530 South Lake Avenue, Suite 250
Pasadena, CA 91101
(626) 696-3145
(626) 421-6747 (fax)

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The Three Magic Questions

July 27, 2011

Filed under: Growing Your Business,Referrals — @ 12:51 pm

Most of the attorneys I coach say they want more clients. They usually want to build relationships with referral sources with the idea of using those relationships to generate business. This makes sense, because a good, reliable referral source for your business can be a wonderful thing.

The problem is that many attorneys don’t know what to say to a potential referral source (and the referral source doesn’t know what to say to the attorney, either). So, the relationship goes nowhere and everyone winds up being disappointed.

It’s not that hard, really. Referral sources want to know, like and trust the people they work with and to whom they send their clients. The quickest way to build such a relationship is to allow a referral source to open up to you and for you to let the referral source know that you are open to new business.

I think there are three magic questions to ask every time you talk to a referral source, whether it’s for the first time, or if you have been working with this individual for many years. Here they are:

Question 1: “How can I help you in your business?” By showing genuine interest in someone, you are much more likely to build a relationship with that person. Wouldn’t you like it if someone asked you this question? Offer to be a resource and to help. It will get you a long way — and a lot of business.

Question 2: “Do you know anyone you think I should meet?” Most people want to help. It’s okay to ask for assistance. Very often, a referral source knows someone who might be helpful to you in your business. Why not ask? If you do, you create the opportunity to learn about a potentially beneficial new relationship.

Question 3: “Are you working on any interesting cases lately?” This question is another way of reminding a referral source that you can be a resource to him or her. The referral source may not have thought about how you can help. So remind him or her. At worst, the answer to the question will be no. If so, you won’t have lost anything. However, the question may very well be yes, resulting in more work for you.

Please let me know how this helps you!

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