You bet’cha! Think about the top rainmaker in your law firm (- this might be you). Where does he or she get their work? My bet is that close to 100% of the time the work comes in because someone tells someone else that that lawyer (or their law firm) is successful at getting similar jobs done for them – or someone they know.
Think about the last client you brought into the firm? Someone you already knew – an existing relationship developed over time -introduced you in person, by phone, email, or etc. to someone that needed what you are offering.
Think about the last time you were asked to recommend an accountant to a client. Did you go to the Yellow Pages and flip through the listings? Nope. You gave them the name of someone you knew, trusted, and liked. Someone with whom a relationship already existed.
Eureka! That’s it. A lawyer’s work comes from EXISTING relationships. If you do not know a lot of people who know people, who know people, you probably don’t have a very robust (or interesting) practice. That goes for the people you know and trust inside your firm too. It’s about building relationships and maintaining them so when the time comes you are top of mind.
So, think again next time you challenge the wisdom of participating in a social network online. Why wouldn’t you add another tool that increases your chances of establishing a relationship with someone who could give you work, or get to know someone you like and trust who you could recommend to someone you know?