Setting clear objectives, and then building specific and measurable actions that stem from your business objectives is key to realizing your goals and growing your business. Lawyers should take ownership of that process by creating a personal business plan that brings it all together.
Too often, however, lawyers’ business plans remain stand-alone, one-off exercises to indulge management, to then be stuffed away in some long-forgotten folder.
Business plans are meant to be tools, and tools are only useful … well, when they are used.
Nexl offers an opportunity to do this better.
Benefits of using Nexl to help you manage and execute your business plan:
Your business plan will mainly consist of actions related to companies and people. In most cases, your contacts will already be on the platform as Nexl automatically captures your engagement tracking email traffic and meetings in Outlook or Gmail.
Those contacts will often already be enriched by Nexl, as it screens for additional information in the databases of our third-party data providers, including LinkedIn.
Nexl can link tasks, notes and opportunities to your clients and prospects. So, you can basically upload all your relationship building and BD objectives and actions straight onto Nexl and manage them there.
You can set reminders to get in touch when your engagement with a contact or company slides; these reminders will trigger notification emails. So even if you don’t go into Nexl, you will be prompted to take action and follow up.
You can use the Prospecting tool to look up and analyze target companies and add their most relevant contacts to your prospecting list.
There is no one-size-fits all approah for business planning. You will have to find out what works best for you and your firm. Below you will find a couple of pointers on how you could potentially use Nexl to manage your business plan.
Executing your Business Plan
First, log on to Nexl and start identifying your target audience. Go step-by-step and don't try to do everything at once. Start for example by looking at your current clients, prospects and referral sources. You can search for companies via the search toolbar on the Homepage, or in the My Contact Section, selecting Companies and using the Company type or other filters to segment.
Take a tour and visit the company records of 10 clients with whom you have interacted recently. Look up a couple of prospects that you have identified in your plan, and label them as Prospect, assigning the company to yourself if the goal is to function as Relationship Partner for this particular prospective client.
On the company record, you can now add further information to reflect your role and the different characteristic of the company. Set the Company type and put your name as “Internal Owner” for your key clients.
In the company record, you will find a wealth of information: some of it is fully automated, other section offer you the option to manually manage your engagement.
Make your business development plans sustainable
But whatever approach you choose, you should be consistent, and measure progress on a regular basis.
Have monthly, or at the very least quarterly business planning sessions for the process to remain agile and adjust to changing circumstances. Such progress meetings can be done with your BD team or coach, the head of your practice group or managing partner, or it can be a more personal exercise where you can update the business plan on your own.