To borrow from the quote by J. Wallace Day about keeping friends close and enemies closer, I might suggest that in a down economy, one should keep their family close and their clients closer.
My colleague Jim Hassett over at Legal Business Development blog talks about some scary stuff that is occurring to law firms in the current economic climate . He recounts layoffs of lawyers and staff in NLJ 250 law firms, the large and well-known firms that have closed in recent years, how it is harder to become an equity partner, and so on.
Not all firms are hurting, and with the state of the financial world, there will be plenty of litigation for sure. But, there will be plenty of pain to go around as well, and the legal industry will not be spared.
His point: stay close to your clients and colleagues, and one way to do that is to “set up a free meeting with a top client or referral source.” I would include all key clients in a “client visitation” program, since it is the single most effective business development tool, as I have mentioned before. And, I would do so whether your firm is experiencing pain in the current economic downturn or not.