Client Service Interviews
The Strategic Advantage
Client satisfaction is a critical measure of a law firm's success and a prerequisite for market leadership. Reinforced over time, client satisfaction results in enhanced client loyalty—the ultimate advantage in a competitive marketplace.
Hallmarks of a successful client service program include choosing the right clients to advance your firm’s strategy, developing a deep understanding of the dynamics of each relationship, interviewing the right people, building credibility and trust, asking the right questions and follow-up questions, listening actively to answers, and turning client feedback into actionable and practical recommendations. Zeughauser Group has conducted thousands of successful client service interviews (CSIs) for many industry-leading law firms, including three of the largest 15 law firms in the world. Our clients are sophisticated firms that work hard to foster client loyalty and invest thoughtfully in identifying, strengthening, and growing their relationships of strategic importance.
We have found that one-on-one, in-person interviews, directed by an objective third party, produce more valuable results than any other survey method due to the trust and credibility that we can inspire.
An internal member of the firm who conducts interviews is typically expected to react to comments or develop solutions, interrupting the flow of conversation. In contrast, clients only expect a third party to ask good questions and listen, which often produces useful candid feedback. As a third party, we offer you the opportunity to provide unattributed feedback in portions of the interview.
The chief objectives of our interviews are to:
- Identify actionable challenges and opportunities in the relationship
- Gage the share-of-wallet that your firm is receiving and opportunities to enhance it
- Pinpoint the factors that drive your decisions to hire and retain counsel
- Identify other law firms and specific lawyers that you view as key competitors for the work your firm is doing or aspires to do
- Seek new information that strengthens your teams and reinvigorates their commitment to high levels of client service and satisfaction
- Identify common themes across areas of strategic importance so they can inform your strategy
At the outset of each engagement, we meet with your firm’s leaders to discuss scope, timeline, methodology, and desired outcome. Additional steps include developing a targeted interview guide; assembling and analyzing background data; preparing tailored recommended communications for use in the firm and with clients to facilitate the process; conducting pre-interviews in the firm; interviews with clients; analysis and reporting; and presentation of findings, actionable recommendations, and best practices.
Because the relationship-enhancing benefits of CSIs can be immediate, most firms expand them over time, often as part of a broader initiative to enhance client relationships of strategic importance.