The lawyers and accountants we work with often ask us this question but where are the best places for lawyers and accountants to network?
Well, the best places for lawyers and accountants to network are the places other lawyers and accountants don’t go to network!
When it comes to traditional networking (whether that’s in person or online), professional advisers tend to make one of three mistakes:
1. They follow the crowd
This means that instead of meeting clients or targets, you are more likely to meet your competitors.
Yes, I know that you can get referrals from other lawyers/accountants but with limited time to invest in business development, surely you’d prefer a more direct route to new clients?
2. They go where they’ve always gone before
Inertia is not a good business development strategy. What might have been a good source of business leads in 1991 is not necessarily the right choice in 2021.
3. They’re too reactive
Finding the right event/group requires a bit more care. Start by asking yourself who exactly you want to connect with. Having a clear picture of who this is will help you identify much more effective networking options.
So, if you don’t go where other lawyers and accountants go, do what you’ve always done or just react, where should you go?
We’d suggest you follow these three tips:
1. Search ‘under the radar’
This is easy to do thanks to websites like eventbrite or simply by Googling ‘networking events = [your areas of interest]’. And your areas of interest need to be linked to the sectors/geographic areas you have clients in rather than to your practice area.
2. Ask a friend
Ask your clients and referrers where they go and which of those events they’d recommend. They will be able to point you in the right direction.
3. Set up your own events
Now that virtual events are so popular, they offer you an easy and cost-effective way to network. Make a short list of the contacts and clients you have that share common personal and professional interests and set something up online.
And the personal angle is often the most productive. Over the last year we have seen very successful business networking groups pop up around shared interests as disparate as West Ham United and an Enid Blyton.