Rainmaking Recommendation #136: Ask!

Image Courtesy of Freedigitalphotos.net/Stuart Miles

Image Courtesy of Freedigitalphotos.net/Stuart Miles

The past few Rainmaking Recommendations have focused on building referrals. However, the one thing that I haven’t told you to do to get more referrals is to just ask for them.

What’s the worst thing that can happen? They say no.

But what if – just what if – you have been a great referral or information source to your strategic referral partners.  What if you have provided excellent work and service to your client.  What if you have made it clear to them the type of work you do as an attorney, described your ideal client to them and asked if they know anyone who fits that description.  Chances are they do know someone who will.

The fear of rejection is one that most attorneys have when asking for referrals.  However, please understand they are not rejecting you when they say they don’t know anyone.  They are rejecting the question because they cannot think of someone who fits the bill at that moment.

Even if they don’t know anyone at that moment, what you have done is put the description of that person who you are seeking as a new client into their head.  If you can find a way to keep putting that picture of your perfect client into their heads –  by keeping in touch, by making sure they hear from you on a consistent basis, by continually asking – then the moment that someone that they know fits into that depiction you have provided of your ideal client, your name will come to mind and a referral will follow.

One of my favorite quotes by the author Nora Roberts is pinned to my bulletin board above my desk:

“If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it.

If you don’t ask, the answer is always “no.”

If you don’t step forward, you’re always in the same place.”

Just ask.   Sometimes the answer is “yes”.




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