Trial lawyers are taught to turn abstract concepts into concrete visual images that a jury can understand. A “day in the life” video is far more compelling than dry testimony from a treating physician in conveying the day-to-day struggles of a severely disabled person. There’s no debate that the visual images in a video or demonstrative exhibit convey a much clearer picture than words can ever do.
Why then do we limit the use of “show me don’t tell me” (as taught at the Gerry Spence Trial Lawyers College (TLC) and by TLC Workshop Mentor, Steve Shultz, Esq.) to jury trials? It seems a waste that lawyers limit this concept to jury trials when “show me don’t tell me” is equally effective in marketing and management of a law practice.
Show Your Staff a Success Story
By way of example, our team has lunch with former clients once a month. We chat over lunch with our former client(s) at a greasy spoon and then visit with them at their home. This is a great way for our team to see the impact that their hard work has had upon the lives of our clients. Our team gets to see the changes to the lifestyle of our clients that they helped create, i.e., adaptations to the home to accommodate their disability, and most importantly, the peace of mind that our team helped create for our clients through financial independence.
“Concreteness is an indispensable element of sticky ideas.”
Chip Heath & Dan Heath, Made to Stick
A not-so-small extra bonus is that our former clients know that we care about them, even when their case is long over and we have nothing to gain. You can’t buy this kind of good will and the end result is clients who rave about you to their friends and family (and just maybe refer new cases). But most important, your team gets to see firsthand the impact that their hard work has had. Can you think of a better motivational tool?
And the beneficiary in the long haul will be your practice through more referrals and a staff who understands the concrete impact that their work has. Yes, “show me don’t tell me” applies to all aspects of marketing and managing a law practice and come to think of it, can you think of a better use of three hours?