The Florida Bar

Florida Bar Journal

Sales for Lawyers

by Shavon Jones Book Reviews

Sales for Lawyers coverA business development book specifically for lawyers, Sales for Lawyers: How to Sell within the Rules of Professional Conduct, is an eye-opening depiction of the practice of law. Attorney and salesperson Shavon Jones examines the issue that so many of us can’t see, or worse, ignore — the dichotomy between an attorney’s ability to sell and his or her ability to excel as a practitioner — as if the two were incongruent and independent of each other.

Whether your goal is to be the worker-bee behind the scenes, or the star attorney (who is front and center at the firm or the specific issue(s) of the time), to be in control of your career, you need to understand the realities of practicing law. A critical reality is that the profession and practice of law is separate and independent from the business of law; and to fully thrive and command your role in the practice of law, you must first understand the business of law.

Jones demonstrates that “selling is power,” and she puts forth specific steps you can take to be empowered, answering an array of how-to questions, such as how to generate leads, how to qualify prospects, and how to convert prospects into clients. Jones’ presentation about the art of being an attorney salesperson is well researched, practical, and one of wide applicability — for solo practitioners, associates, partners, and even attorneys in the nonprofit sector; the ideas put forth are solid, yet flexible for application to specific practice areas.

Jones’ analysis regarding attorneys as sales people vis-à-vis the professional code of conduct for attorneys should make even the most conservative attorney (or perhaps most experienced in years, practicing at a time when any form of self-promotion and advertising by attorneys was negatively received by the state bars) understand and embrace that promotion of legal services is a good thing — for you and your community.

Sales for Lawyers is effective, relevant, and should be on the reading list of every law student and any attorney who aspires to succeed and have professional autonomy.

Nydia Menendez of Ft. Lauderdale is a member of The Florida Bar Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section.