Whatever your particular role title in the claims industry (lawyer, insurer, expert, judge), you have many ‘customers’ to whom you ‘supply’ your excellent services.
Each customer expects to be given clear and non-complex (simple) information on the legal matter at hand (e.g., their claim; expert or legal evidence). They want this information quickly, accurately and efficiently. They want to be able to have contact with you as accessibly and as easily as possible. Many professionals are afraid of releasing this access information in case the phone starts ringing and never stops! However, most customers do not abuse this ‘easy access’ but are reassured by this information, and, paradoxically, do not ring, write or email incessantly or obtrusively as a result.
Providing high quality legal and medico-legal services depends on excellent products provided by staff and professionals who feel empowered and happy in their jobs. However, even when these ‘internal’ processes of process improvement and staff empowerment are achieved, the crucial variable of customer responsiveness can ‘make or break’ any one contact with the outside world.
Putting yourself in the metaphorical shoes of any of your customers is an essential strategy to ensure the common sense practices of communication and service delivery are being addressed. Did you treat the last person you ‘supplied’ with courtesy and information in a speedy and high quality manner?
Contemporary 21st century legal practice should be based on rapid, excellent and up-to-date service that is appropriately resourced. This means that however busy you are, you release the appropriate resource (time, administration, research) to meet the customer’s expectations and, on a good day, exceed them!
Alongside the technical ‘know-how’ necessary for supplying effective service, the psychological benefits of the ‘halo’ (happy, timely, easily accessible), ‘primary’ (first time high quality response) and ‘recency’ (latest high quality response) effects will give firms the edge over the ‘busy, distracted’ firm who fails to deliver good service on time.
Deliver your service with a metaphorical smile on your face, put a spring in your legal step and deliver it now, not tomorrow.
Koch HCH, (Putting a spring in your legal step. Modern Law Magazine. November 2018).