I am Bad at Making Friends — Rachel Rodgers blocked me on Twitter

Rachel Rodgers managed to astonish me again tonight by writing this article.  In her article, she tells lawyers to “ABC” or “always be closing.” Seriously.

Please excuse that smell, it’s vomit in the back of my mouth.

According to Rachel, attorneys should:

Get a whiteboard and write down how much revenue you want to make this quarter. (Go ahead. I’ll wait).  Under your goal number, write down how much you’ve made so far this quarter and subtract it from your goal number. The new total is how much you have left to make. Be sure to include the date every time you update the board – it adds a sense of urgency. Now every time you get paid, deduct the amount of revenue to date from your goal number.  By doing this you will have the exact number you need to make staring you in the face everyday.

In other words, don’t worry about what type of legal services are appropriate for your clients.  Worry about how much money you need to make. Charge accordingly.

I mean, who cares what your clients need, right?  It’s all about making money.

Sounds like a great idea, except for one problem.  As a lawyer, we are a fiduciary for our clients.  According to Wikipedia:

A fiduciary duty is the highest standard of care at either equity or law. A fiduciary (abbreviation fid) is expected to be extremely loyal to the person to whom he owes the duty (the “principal”): he must not put his personal interests before the duty, and must not profit from his position as a fiduciary, unless the principal consents.

In other words, a lawyer has a duty to not to view clients as a “mark” or a “lead”.  However, in the comment section, Rachel states:

If you feel like your services aren’t valuable or lack confidence, that can be a barrier to effectively closing leads.

…closing leads?  Sometimes a client might not need your services.  Sometimes they are better off saving their money. And it’s our duty to tell them that. However, according to Rachel Rodgers:

I would give away the milk, which meant that very few potential clients were buying the cow. Even worse, I didn’t clearly express to my prospective clients what the cow was and why it was worth my fees to get it. I had no idea what the hell I was doing and was quite perturbed that many of these prospects weren’t becoming paying clients.

This begs the question — Rachel, are you a fiduciary, or are you just interested in making a few bucks…?

Inquiring minds want to know.

4 Responses to I am Bad at Making Friends — Rachel Rodgers blocked me on Twitter

  1. I agree 100%. Here’s an example why. I have a prospective client who wants me to help them form a non-profit organization. The soup-to-nuts process is the biggest-ticket service I provide my clients (and is intellectually satisfying as well, when I’m working on an organization’s internal governance documents). But I’m going to turn this client down, because they have no clue what they’re getting into. I would not be doing them a favor by taking their money and launching their organization onto the world. Rachel Rodgers would have me take the fee and run. But if I work with these guys, they’re going to end up in trouble with the IRS, or they’ll harm their constituents, or they’ll do something else that just puts them in a world of hurt. The kind of lawyer who helps them out is the kind of lawyer that ends up in bad lawyer jokes.

  2. I think it is unfortunate that the blogosphere has deteriorated to such a point that you would be blocked by a colleague simply for expressing a contrary opinion. How can we learn if we surround ourselves with only those who agree with us?

    It is also sad that attorneys take disagreement so personally. We practice in a contentious profession. Sometimes we will have a nasty opposing counsel. Sometimes we have to be nasty ourselves. Whatever serves our clients.

  3. Leo M. Mulvihill, Jr. says:

    … or, if you’re Rachel, whatever gets you leads and legal fees.

    The Happysphere is bullshit.

    Young attorneys have to hear that they’re wrong and have their viewpoints challenged (regardless whether they teach at SPU). Otherwise we’d never learn.

  4. […] response to what I wrote last week, first Rachel Rodgers blocked me on Twitter. I guess criticism is bad for […]

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