Holland & Hart's Mark Beese has an excellent summary of business development tips for associates, which he presented during today's Web seminar, "The Senior Marketer's Perspective: How Associates Can Excel at Business Development in 2006."
The program was presented by the Professional Business Development Institute ("PBDI"). Check out PBDI's upcoming programs at www.PBDI.org. Mark has 18 years' experience with architecture and law firms and is Holland & Hart's law firm's "Marketing Guy" (that's his official title!). He and Jan Dubin, Director of Client Relations for DLA Piper offered a feast of business development ideas. Mark identified 5 kinds of rainmakers that associates can become:
Example 1: Relationship Rainmaker: 1st attorney in firm to make 7-figure compensation. As an associate he made a list of 50 people he knew, or could know, who would be outstanding clients. He built relationships with them over time. Many became leaders in business, politics and community, who trusted him for both legal work and referrals.
Example 2: Specialization Rainmaker: Associate specialized early on in employment law for small and mid-sized companies in rural west. Started road-show seminars, e-mail newsletters, and built relationships with HR managers throughout state. He wrote, spoke, and attended SHRM and industry events to develop a reputation and build a strong book of business before he was a partner.
Example 3: Entrepreneur Rainmaker: Two associates saw an industry trend with low density of lawyers. They quickly developed an expertise in financing, permitting, etc and got very involved in industry events, resulting in new clients and matters for them, and the firm. Shows enthusiasm, energy, and focus – fast track to Partner.
Example 4: Networker Rainmaker: Associate gets very involved in local and state politics, community service, and pro bono work, developing a network of business and government leaders along the way. People trusted associate resulting in new work and clients for him and the firm.
Example 5: Roadie Rainmaker: Associate takes specialty to a different geographic location where the office and city has fewer lawyers, setting up meetings, seminars, and networking events with current and potential clients. She has two offices in two cities, growing work for entire group.
For the rest of his ideas, see the Leadership for Lawyers blog.