Larry Cattle’s opinion piece ‘Getting your message across’ superbly highlighted the challenges of keeping pace with client expectations.
The first sentence in point three, ‘Does your firm make communications a high priority?’, states: ‘Firms that have the best communications activity are those that consider communications important – both external and internal.’
Digital developments require all of us, even the most formidably skilled practitioners, to review both corporate and interpersonal communications. There can be no room for complacency.
To illustrate the pace of development, there have been more changes in the print industry in the last 30 years than the whole of the previous 550 years. When the Law Society Gazette first published in 1903, it used the same technology as the Gutenberg press. It would have been the same process had it begun in 1440.
Another equation states that for every hour we spend online, we lose 30 minutes of interpersonal contact. We live in an on-demand world where information needs are immediately gratified. This affects both the communication frontline and financial bottom line.
Budget and operational considerations might make training difficult for some firms. Liverpool Law Society has had the foresight to include soft-skills training in its programme since 2013. I am heartened and honoured to be a facilitator with that repertoire.
From courses aimed at senior management on client relationship management strategy development, which considers every aspect of a firm’s communication channels, to telephone skills for first response teams, Liverpool Law Society clearly takes the issue seriously.
Is this low-cost/high-return resource an example of how regional law societies can help firms gain a competitive advantage?
Candy Bowman, Charlton Adam, Somerton, Somerset