Conducting exit interviews with a client after their legal matter has been concluded is essential. Yes, it can sometimes be uncomfortable. But it is almost always beneficial, since the insights you gain can be used to improve your firm in ways that will eventually lead to more business and happier clients.
Here are 6 critical questions you need to ask each client after the case is closed:
- Are we easy to do business with?
The reason that this is the first question is simple: clients who find you easy to work with are much more likely to retain you in the future and refer you to people they know. The answers to this question will give you important insights into how your operational system is working to increase client satisfaction — and if your system is flawed, you can learn how and fix it.
- What did you like about our services?
This answer will not only provide you with information on what your client found most important, but also what they wish you offered that you currently do not. There may be some opportunities for new services you could provide that would mean incremental income for your firm.
- What could we have done differently?
Clients usually let small annoyances slide, but those can build up over time. Wouldn’t it be nice to know what is lacking that you can easily fix so you can rid your firm of irritating or unproductive practices?
- Did our team communicate effectively with you?
The #1 complaint bar associations get from clients is that their attorneys do a poor job of communicating with them. If your team is not doing what they should to keep clients up to date on their legal matters, you need to know it and fix it.
- Did we meet expectations?
A negative answer to this question can tell you if your firm is doing a poor job of either setting or managing client expectations, or if you are failing to meet them altogether. Then you can work to prevent similar failures in the future.
- Would you refer us to friends and family?
Most people believe lawyers don’t want or need referrals or they get all their clients from their own advertising efforts. Help them understand that your business is just like any other profession and relies on referrals to friends, family members, colleagues, business associates, etc. If you’re a multi-discipline firm, educate them on the scope of your firm’s services. Tell them what a good referral looks like to you by explaining the profile of your ideal client. Instruct them on the best way to make a referral to you — if you prefer an email introduction or a phone call.
Asking these six simple questions can go a long way toward providing you with a more productive law firm and new referral sources that bring you more clients.