Attention insurance claims professionals: on this blog item, tell me if I’m wrong.
To be a great marketer, you need to have a very important quality: responsiveness.
You want to be a great markerter, #younglawyers, and you think being a great lawyer is all you need to do to make your clients happy? You think your firm will continue to receive files from insurance companies and clients simply because you’ve done great legal work? You’re wrong.
Insurers and corporate clients have plenty of great law firms and skilled lawyers on their approved counsel lists. Some have been there for many years, others are recent additions. Each and every day, that person assigning a file has to make a decision, and as every insurer is likely to tell you, that decision will often (usually?) be based on the LAWYER, not the LAW FIRM.
Consider the options:
Lawyer 1: 20 years a lawyer, has had great results in motion work and trial verdicts but the last time the claim manager reviewed the files he was handling, she noticed:
- It took three emails and a call to the managing partner before that lawyer provided a status report.
- The deposition report came in two months after the conclusion of the examination and was basically a verbatim description of the testimony.
- Four calls were unreturned.
- Five emails were unanswered.
- The budget was three months overdue.
- On the last file, we learned of the scheduled mediation three days before it was conducted.
- Did not receive word that the case was going to trial until 15 days before jury selection, even though the lawyer knew about it six months earlier.
Lawyer 2: Five years a lawyer, has had great results in motion work and in the trial verdicts (although they were for cases with less value than Lawyer 1). The last time the claim manager reviewed the files she was handling, she noticed:
- Emails received prompt responses and status reports were provided without prodding.
- The deposition report came in within a couple of weeks of the conclusion of the examination and not only summarized the salient points of the testimony (leaving out the unimportant material), but discussed the impact of that deposition on the future handling of the case.
- Calls were promptly returned.
- The budget was properly and timely filed, as were the 60 and 180 day report letters.
- The carrier was involved in the selection of the mediator and its scheduling, well in advance of the mediation in order to secure proper authority.
- The trial date was communicated when selected as was a description of the potential jury pool; experts were contacted and advised, as were the key witnesses.
- The lawyer understood the INSURER’S or CLIENT’S business and provided information that helped advance their business interests.
Let me ask you, if you were the claims professional hiring a lawyer, who would you select?
You want to be a great marketer? Be the most responsive, proactive lawyer on the approved counsel list. The phone will ring off the hook and you’ll be able to demonstrate that it is YOU that is keeping this client happy, even though you are the newer kid on the block.