More nuggets from the Clientelligence book and the four activities that deliver the most value according to the author who interviewed thousands of C-level executives. The first post examined the first two activities – Commitment to help and Client Focus. This post reviews the other two — Understanding the Client’s Business and Providing Value for the Dollar.
To check this box, think and act like an auditor. Yes, some of the most effective lawyers put on their accounting hat and get very deep into the weeds of the client’s business.
One of the major standards governing the work of auditors requires the auditor to obtain an understanding of the entity-client and its industry as a necessary step in performing a comprehensive audit. As a guide, here are the five major aspects of understanding the client’s business and industry, along with potential sources of information that could be helpful to you for each of the five areas:
As the author notes, taking these or similar steps (many of which are identified in the book) enables you to better understand what your client really wants, proactively identify potential legal and business issues, and provide relevant, client specific solutions for which you may be able to help implement.
There are three components required to check this box.
The following examples illustrate how you may be able to deliver value (bullet one) from the client’s point of view (bullet three). Below these examples are thoughts (from the book) about how to communicate the value that has been delivered (bullet two).
And as far as communicating this value, the book advises that service providers who are adept in the art of articulating value are able to do three things:
So, the skilled communicator shares every major breakthrough, problem solved and obstacle overcome with his clients. He speaks in terms the client understands and considers important by focusing on extras such as time saved, costs avoided, risks mitigated, and outcomes that were dramatically better than expected. And he confirms scope changes in real-time, outlining the full implications of the changes before discussing fees; discusses the impact on budget, resources, and timing; and proactively shares his recommendations for handling any changes in order to keep the original parameters as intact as possible.
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