Client feedback can be the fuel to supercharge your firm’s client experience. When firms prioritize listening to clients and turning that feedback into actionable plans the firm will reap the rewards – better client outcomes, stronger and more meaningful relationships, increased loyalty, and ultimately, clients who will advocate for your firm.
A structured client feedback program will uncover what clients want, expect, and value from your firm. It is a source of competitive intelligence and can shed light on your client’s decision-making process.
Nat Slavin, Founder & Partner at Wicker Park Group, shared some of his insights into the Power of Client Feedback at a recent Objective Manager Forum. He was joined by Kelly Mack, Senior Business Development Manager at McGlinchey Stafford, to share her experiences implementing a successful client feedback program.
Here are some key insights shared by Nat and Kelly during the webinar:
- Start with a goal. Without a goal how will you measure success and keep your team outcome-focused?
- Be prepared to overcome obstacles. Relationship attorneys often hold all the information for a particular client – the truth of what the client wants, needs and values lives within the voice of that relationship attorney. Not the voice of the client, so a client feedback program gives that client a platform to be heard.
- The little things matter. Thinking clients will actively raise existing issues is one of the greatest fictions in the industry and often means the small concerns or problems are tolerated. This can erode the relationship and lead to a slow decline in the amount of work that client does with the firm.
- Be prepared. Both in terms of being thoughtful about who you are going to ask, and the client selection, but also the preparation for follow-up.
- One size fits one. All your clients have different needs, at different times. They have different responsibilities. So even when you have collected feedback from one person at a client, you need to be aware that those might not be the needs of everyone in the client.
- Don’t ask for feedback unless you are willing to act on it! If you’re going to take the time to ask clients for input, you have to be prepared to follow-up. You don’t have to solve the problem, but you do need to acknowledge that the challenge has been heard, the need has been understood, and what the plan is going to be to work on it.
- Create actionable plans. Develop four to ten good follow-up initiatives and involve the attorneys and their team in the process to ensure it is adopted. Best practice is to use a technology platform that makes it easy to track and share outcomes of the plan and actions (such as Objective Manager).