Once you've asked your clients what they expect from you, let them grade you on it. Here's how:
- Make a list of 3-5 non-negotiable "Client Commitments" that you and your firm promise to keep in every matter with every client.
- Share those Commitments on your website and in every engagement agreement.
- With every bill (or at least quarterly), send your clients an old-fashioned "Report Card" that asks them to give you a grade on each of your Client Commitments.
- Follow up with the client each time you get a B or below to find out about specific ways you can improve.
- At least yearly, schedule a "parent-teacher" conference to review your performance with the client.
- Consider refunding part of your fees every time a client gives you a C or D — and think seriously about giving a client's entire fee back (and helping them find another lawyer) when they've "failed" you, because you've probably failed them