Professional UK speaker and media coach Alan Stevens says something important for all of us:
“The more work you turn down, the more work you’ll get.”
Sounds odd, doesn’t it? But, here’s the way it works: people buy experts. They don’t buy generalists. They want the best specialist they can afford. That means you should only accept work that fits your very nichey expertise.
The more you become known as an expert on a topic, the more people will come to you for help. If you try your hand at everything, you’ll become known for nothing.
Of course, that’s tough, especially when you are starting out. Because you need mulah, when in desperation you may make a deal with the devil and whether your firm and sanity live to regret it is, at best, uncertain. Think about a loooooong career. Specializing in something that people place a high value on and feel an urgency for is the way to success.
Of course, when turning down work, you should recommend another expert who can do a great job. That will boost your reputation too. (Unless the client waves red flags and appears to be a PITA. If so, refer them to your worst enemy!)
The more work you turn down, the more work you’ll get. Alan’s spot on. Here’s a helpful blog article I wrote about identifying your ideal client as well as a recommended branding book. Most lawyers think their brand is their logo and firm colors – not so. Branding includes much more, including who you love and will work with.
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