How do I move my clients with me to a consultancy platform?    

Nigel Clark, CEO
Estimated read time: 2 Minutes

How do I move my clients with me to a consultancy platform?    

Making the leap from private practice, or an in-house role, to becoming a self-employed consultant can be daunting for many reasons.  

One big worry for solicitors thinking about making that change is how their clients will react. Understandably there is a nervousness about what clients will think. Will they stay loyal to the individual they know and have a working relationship with? Will they be unsettled by the change and loss of a law firm brand “wrapper” (and the infrastructure that goes with it) and stay with the firm?  Knowing the answer to this question is clearly a big factor in whether to become a consultant. 

With over 130 consultant solicitors working on our platform here at Nexa, we have seen this work in practice many times. Here’s some tips on how to move your clients with you to a consultancy platform: 

  • Legal clients just want a lawyer who understands their business, watches their back, is responsive, provides sensible solutions and is good value for money. If they have found a trusted individual who gives them these things, the law firm or brand they are working under becomes far less relevant. If you have strong relationships with your clients, the chances are the majority will follow you.  
  • Legal clients tend to be loyal, despite solicitors’ nervousness. Just like when it comes to changing your bank account, apathy also plays a part! Using a solicitor for legal work is just a “necessary evil” for many businesses and individuals so they don’t have a strong motivation to change them. 
  • It can be difficult if your client base is exclusively made up of large corporates or public sector bodies; they may have a panel of firms they have to use or formal procurement processes which makes it harder (but not impossible) for them to follow you. If you are working for large clients who have multiple contacts within your existing law firm, they may be reluctant to go outside of that framework and it may be easier for the law firm to provide a replacement for you. However, the vast majority of business clients in the mid-market have a small group of decision makers who instruct lawyers and the vast majority of these want a single contact point, ‘their lawyer’. 
  • Becoming a consultant means you will be able to dedicate more time to your clients, giving them more access to you and offering an even more personal service once freed from the administration and management involved in being a partner or senior associate at a traditional law firm. In addition, with far lower overheads, you will be able to offer the same quality service at a reduced rate. Once clients understand this, engaging a consultant looks very attractive! 
  • Honesty and transparency are crucial to reassure your clients. Speak to them as soon as you can so that they understand the reasons for your move and how it will impact them (explain the positives). Analyse the work you do with each client and think about whether they use anyone else at your firm and how this could work going forward

Ready to find out more? 

If you’re interested in finding out a bit more detail about life as a consultant lawyer and what we can offer you at Nexa, check out our careers pages here or, have a look at our brochure. For a confidential, no obligation chat, contact David Roth. 

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