Don’t look now, but conversations are becoming increasingly rare.

The fact that there are plenty of attempts at messaging doesn’t mean any real conversations are taking place…

Just because there is measurable attention being paid to a given topic or hundreds of hours of talk devoted to a critical issue is no guarantee of progress.

Need a stark case-in-point?

Continue Reading Oh No! Not the same conversation…again!

The sentiment expressed by Vince Lombardi, the legendary former coach of the Green Bay Packers, has reached manifesto status — “Winning isn’t everything; it’s the only thing.”

At the other end of the spectrum is the antiquated idea derived from the Grantland Rice poem ‘Alumnus Football’ (1908) — “It’s not whether you win or lose, it’s how you play the game.”

Though I’m usually up for a spirited debate, let’s stipulate that it is one thing to believe that winning is the point when we’re talking about our favorite competition.

But an almost blind obsession with finishing on top is far more ubiquitous than just in the games we play

The question is — when competitive juices drive the pursuit of a win at all costs no matter the arena, what is revealed about what we value most?

Surely there are important encounters where winning is decidedly not the only thing.

Continue Reading With deference to Lombardi, Winning is NOT the only thing

Conventional wisdom for lawyers suggests that we’re fast approaching a moment when the die for this year will be cast, and there’s not much that can be done to impact this year’s revenue picture.

Before you buy the idea that there is nothing to be done that might increase revenue this year — not to mention, jumpstart 2024 — can we talk.

Continue Reading You Still Have Time To Grow Your Practice This Year. Do These Three Things.

Wherever business development initiatives aren’t delivering ROI in the form of increased revenue, the problem often boils down to missing the target more often than not.

It is easy to do.

An entire industry has a vested interest in convincing you that getting your name out there amounts to smart business development. Once you make this leap it is tempting to buy the ads, sign up for the sponsorships, get the copy points and colors just right on your website, catalogue every capability…and then wait for the market to beat a path to your door.

If neither time or budget is an issue, and assuming your visibility campaign in some way differentiates you from everyone else — this might work.

But odds are you’ll over spend, waste time and miss connecting with any real targets.

Continue Reading When BizDev Efforts Fail To Increase Revenue, You Have An Aim Problem

  1. Can you name the target(s) key to your success?
  2. Do you know and understand the core concerns of your target(s)?
  3. Do you have a clear solution/answer for these concerns?
  4. How will you create visibility, deliver value and build trust with your target?

Whether you are marketing a professional service, selling a product or seeking support for a cause, four questions provide the framework for increasing revenue.

Continue Reading Four Steps That Will Increase Revenue

When was the last time you heard (or uttered) this phrase in a moment of consequence?

Reflecting, I’m fairly certain I’ve said “I’m sorry.” But that is not the same thing.

Sadly, I don’t remember backing away from a position, strategy or action, and thoughtfully acknowledging having been flat wrong…though there have been plenty of times when it would have been the most appropriate response. 

This blind spot comes with serious consequences.

Continue Reading I Was Wrong

Any discussion of business development should begin with this disclaimer:

There are no one-size-fits-all solutions or formulas. Silver bullets and cookie-cutters might work elsewhere; but not here.

With that stipulation, there are solid cornerstones that will ensure the resources invested in BizDev aren’t experimental in nature, leaving you to hope the market finds you.

In fact, a volatile market or a distaste for “selling” notwithstanding, it is possible to create an approach to business development that produces results — if you possess the will to build a plan on these four cornerstones.

Continue Reading Unlocking Business Development Success: Build a Solid Foundation with these Four Cornerstones


If business development efforts are consistently slow-going, there’s a good chance the issue is related to smart targeting. Specifically…the lack thereof.

Here’s a quick exercise. Pull out your business development plan and check for two things:

  • that name of an individual is connected to each action item in the plan — company names and industries don’t count;
  • each action item is relevant to getting you face-to-face with either individuals who will advance your pursuit OR with a hiring authorization.

If you’re light on the first, and/or there’s a lot of activity that doesn’t eventually map to a decision maker, we may have identified the problem: your plan isn’t target-driven…which means you’re stuck hoping your efforts connect.

Continue Reading If You Want To Jumpstart Business Development, Here’s Where To Start

Here are three things to say when your goal is to stifle creativity and bring any conversation about change to a screeching halt.

  • “That {problem / issue / challenge} will always be present.”
  • “You’ll never {gain consensus / get the support necessary} to change that…”
  • “It is what it is.”

There are scores of variations on the theme. But the thesis is the same: discussion is pointless — things will never change / improve — the dye is case.

There is no more poignant indicator of an absence of leadership.

Continue Reading Leaders Pursue Solutions, Relentlessly