Camille Stell

Stell: 52 Ways to Wow a Client

Providing great client service is among the best ways to avoid bar grievances and malpractice claims. Impressing your client with your legal skills, your business savvy and high emotional intelligence is also guaranteed to encourage referrals, which is the best way to build your law practice. Here are 52 tips to wow your clients.

  1. Return phone calls
  2. Ask questions
  3. Under-promise and over-deliver
  4. Anticipate future needs
  5. Help clients maneuver the system
  6. Be sensitive to client needs
  7. Be aware of the time you are charging clients
  8. Be empathetic
  9. Be transparent in communications
  10. Make technology your friend
  11. Be efficient
  12. Be transparent in pricing
  13. Ask for feedback
  14. Create and share content with your client
  15. Offer educational programs to your client
  16. Be available
  17. Advocate for your client
  18. Treat your client with respect
  19. Treat your staff with respect
  20. Be a team player
  21. Check your ego at the door
  22. Be honest
  23. Be authentic
  24. Get personal
  25. Listen to your gut
  26. Apologize if something goes wrong
  27. Choose clients you like
  28. Fire clients when necessary
  29. Be a life-long learner
  30. Cultivate a team approach
  31. Refresh your office space
  32. Put fresh flowers in the reception area
  33. Freshen your bathrooms and offer amenities like mouthwash, mints, lotion
  34. Provide parking or directions for parking
  35. Become an expert
  36. Become a NC State Bar Specialist
  37. Develop leadership skills
  38. Develop a niche
  39. Invest in your community
  40. Invest in a charity
  41. Invest in pro bono work – visit ncprobono.net
  42. Update your client intake process
  43. Use effective client engagement letters – visit lawyersmutualnc.com
  44. Encourage referrals from your clients
  45. Survey your clients
  46. Take time off
  47. Fill your office with positive, energetic, inspirational people
  48. Develop a Board of Advisors, trusted friends and colleagues to guide you and your practice
  49. Focus on one client at a time
  50. Network and develop business in an authentic manner
  51. Earn your client’s trust
  52. Build an awesome website

Good luck as you work hard cultivating exceptional client relationships.

Camille Stell is the Vice President of Client Services for Lawyers Mutual. Continue this conversation by contacting Camille at camille@lawyersmutualnc.com or 800.662.8843.

GBA Annual Picnic 2017

Sunday, May 21

4:00pm

First National Bank Park’s
Novant Health Picnic Area (at 3rd Base)

Bring your family (kids too!) to cheer on the
Greensboro Grasshoppers
as they take on the Delmarva Shorebirds

The Young Lawyers Section will be collecting donations for
the Book Buddies program at Hampton Elementary School.

YLS will use all donations to purchase books so that our Book Buddies
will have a new book to take home for the summer—our goal is $500!

Click here to Register

New Members, Approved April 12, 2017

Brandon Kenneth Jones
Carruthers & Roth, P.A
Endorsed by Kenneth L. Jones

Stacey L. Kraftchick
Tuggle Duggins P.A.
Endorsed by Michael J. Wenig

Jessica Stone
Legal Aid of NC
Endorsed by Janet McAuley Blue

Free CLE – Understanding the Business Valuation Process for Litigation

The GBA will sponsor a CLE to be held on Thursday, May 25th at Smith Moore Leatherwood LLP in Greensboro, from 12:00 to 1:00 pm. Check in begins at 11:30 a.m. Lunch will be provided.

The CLE will feature a presentation from Dwight A. Ensley, a Certified Valuation Analyst and North Carolina licensed attorney.  Mr. Ensley is the founder and principal of ValuePoint.biz, a valuation firm that performs valuations of closely held businesses across the U.S. and valuations of defined benefit pension plans for divorce cases in North Carolina.  Mr. Ensley’s presentation will focus on how businesses are defined, when business valuations are required, what to look for in selecting an evaluator, the various types of business valuations, what standards to use when evaluating a business, and the elements of a business valuation report.  One hour of general credit for this CLE is pending approval from the State Bar.

The CLE is free for GBA members.

Please contact Ellis Martin at ellis.martin@smithmoorelaw.com for any further questions.

Register for May 25 CLE Here

Habitat 2017 Donors Recognized

The Habitat Steering Committee would like to extend its sincere appreciation to those donors who made the Greensboro Bar Association’s 8th Habitat House possible. Thanks to their contributions, and those of our dedicated work crews, the Tona Nay and D’Joan R’mah family will soon have a home to call their own.

Developer ($1,000+)

Gerard Davidson & Janet Ward Black

Kenneth R. Keller

M. Jay Devaney, In Honor of Brett Devaney

Herman Cone III, In Honor of Bob Cone

James L. Swisher

Nancy S. Ferguson

Douglas E. Wright

Tuggle Duggins P.A.

Contractor ($500 to $999)

Carruthers & Roth, P.A.

Jeri L. & Peter Whitfield, In Honor of Bob Cone

James W. Bryan

Robert C. Cone

Timothy Peck, In Honor of Gerard Davidson

John R. Morgan

Master Builder ($250 to $499)

Melanie M. Hamilton

Barden W. Cooke

W. Erwin Fuller, Jr.

Barbara R. Christy

Vance Barron, Jr.

M. Daniel McGinn

Reid L. Phillips

J. Scott Dillon, In Honor of Kenneth R. Keller

J. Patrick Haywood. In Honor of Kenneth R. Keller

Jesse W. Anderson

Diane & John Lowe

William G. McNairy

Benjamin R. Norman

Howard L. Williams

Christine L. Myatt

Bruce P. Ashley

Richard A. Coughlin, In Honor of Jacob Coughlin

Neale T. Johnson

Contributor

John M. Cross, Jr. & Jennifer K. Van Zant

Edward C. Winslow, III

Joseph R. Beatty, In Honor of My Friends at Hill Evans Jordan & Beatty, PLLC

Michael R. Abel

Sabrina Bailey Clark

Catherine C. Eagles

R. Thompson Wright

Sharon B. Malburg, In Honor of Nexsen Pruett Real Estate Attorneys (GSO Office)

T.M. “Mark” Gaylord, In Memory of Mildred Troxler Gaylord

Peter G. Pappas

Donald K. Speckhard

Michael J. Allen, In Memory of Dan Kuoni

June L. Basden

Kenneth M. Greene, In Honor of Kenneth R. Keller

Richard L. Vanore

Gregory S. & Wallace Williams

Mark K. York

Marc D. Bishop

Stephen W. Earp

Jeffrey E. Oleynik

Kristen King

Paul G. Topolka

William P. H. Cary

Clinton R. Pinyan

Brian J. Mc Millan

Sarah F.Sparrow

William B. Davis

Robert D. Douglas III, In Honor of R.D. Douglas, Jr.

William G. Burgin III

Kristin A. Landrum

Teresa H. Vincent, In Honor of Ms. Fannie Vincent

Tonia A. Cutchin

Susan M. Fradenburg

Gregory G. Holland

Whitney D. Pierce

Lisa K. Shortt

David Clark Smith, Jr.

H. Thomas Jarrell, Jr., In Honor of Guilford County District Court Judges

Martha T. Peddrick

Justin N. Outling

Robert G. Baynes

Carole W. Bruce

Joshua O. Harper

Henry B. Mangum, Jr.

A. Robinson & Eloise M. Hassell

Matthew L. Mason

Margaret R. Kantlehner, In Honor of Jack & Betsy Harrington

Susan R. Burch

Laura & Will Burton

Patti W. Ramseur

Nicholas J. Bakasias

We are still in great need of workers to fill out our crews, now through August. No Construction experience required! Please donate your time to this worthy and rewarding cause.  Register for Habitat Build Now!

Smith Moore Leatherwood Partner Allyson Labban Receives Certification in Health Care Privacy Compliance

Smith Moore Leatherwood LLP is pleased to announce Allyson Labban, partner in the Greensboro office, recently obtained her Certification in Health Care Privacy Compliance (CHPC®) by the Compliance Certification Board.

This certification signifies knowledge of relevant regulations and proficiency in compliance processes sufficient to assist the health care industry in understanding and addressing legal obligations, as well as the promotion of organizational integrity through the operation of effective compliance programs. The certification is valid for two years and is affiliated with the Health Care Compliance Association.

Allyson Labban

Allyson Labban

Labban works with hospitals and other health care providers to identify, respond to and resolve compliance issues and keep their businesses running. A large part of her practice focuses on state and federal regulatory compliance and fraud and abuse issues and response to OCR and OIG investigations and inquiries.

As a member of a local hospital system’s ethics committee, Labban assists providers and staff in navigating complex patient care and communication issues within the framework of the law and ethical considerations.  She also provides education and training on research ethics and compliance to researchers in the university and private health care settings.

Labban is a graduate of Wofford College with degrees in history and Spanish, and received her law degree from Duke University.

Kenneth R. Keller, President, Greensboro Bar Association

Message from the President, May 2017

Our May meeting will be a family picnic outing on Sunday, May 21, 2017 for the Hopper’s game at the First National Bank Field downtown.  The picnic (hamburgers, hot dogs, BBQ chicken, vegetarian item, cole slaw, baked beans, beer, tea, lemonade and water) runs from 3:30 – 5:00 p.m. The game with the Delmarva Shorebirds begins at 4:00 p.m.  The event is free to all GBA members and their families.

This event is coordinated by the Young Lawyers Section of the GBA, which will solicit financial donations for their very successful Book Buddies program.  Please help the Young Lawyers Section reach their goal of $500 (tax deductible contributions can be made to the Greensboro Bar Association Foundation, Inc., marked “YLS – Book Buddies”).

To obtain tickets for the game and picnic, please respond to the e-mail registration notice that Diane will be sending very soon. A special GBA “will call” table will be located at the east entrance (closest to the dog statutes/playground) to the ball park just prior to the picnic.

Construction of our eighth Habitat house is off to a great start.  The Student Veterans Association at UNC-G and a number of our law firms and associated entities (Brooks Pierce, District Court Judges, Federal Court Unity Committee, Nexsen Pruet, Oxner Permar, and Schell Bray) have signed up to staff complete workdays.  However, we still need volunteers.  Please access the Habitat/GBA website to review the schedule and volunteer.

With your help, this year the Greensboro Bar Association:

Amended the 18th Judicial District Bylaws, coordinating efforts with our 18H sister District so both Bylaws are now consistent and on file with the North Carolina Bar Association

Held a special meeting and submitted nominations of Jonathan Kreider, Ronald Butler, and Randall Howell to Governor McCrory for the position of District Court Judge vacated by the retirement of the Honorable Wendy Enochs

Hosted a special session of the North Carolina Court of Appeals and reception to honor Judge Enochs

Awarded the annual GBA Award for Pro Bono Service to Amanda Feder

Recognized Bob Cone as the recipient of the NC State Bar McMillan Distinguished Service Award

Awarded the Centennial Award to John Cross

Awarded two annual GBA Distinguished Service Awards, one to Judge Patrice Hinnant and one to Justice Bob Edmunds

Coordinated a trip to the U.S. Supreme Court

Raised almost $25,000 for Legal Aid

Continued donation of books at Jones Elementary

Continued staffing Potter’s House the third Sunday each month

Donated 35 pints of blood to the Red Cross

Recognized 15 members receiving Herb Falk Society awards for Pro Bono Service

Raised funding and volunteers for our eighth Habitat for Humanity House

Provided 1 hour of substance abuse and 2 hours of ethics CLE to our members

Special thanks to

Afi Johnson-Parrish for her guidance throughout the year, her service as chair of the nominating committee, and her service on the compensation committee

Eloise Hassell, Judge Bill Davis, Sarah Roane, Jeff Oleynik, Ashley Bennington, and Gwen Lewis for their service on the nominating committee

Sarah Roane and Desmond Sheridan for their service on the compensation committee

Judge Teresa Vincent and Ames Chamberlin for the creative “ice breakers” during our lunch meetings and the successful membership mix and mingle events

Gwen Lewis and Elon University School of Law for the Holiday Party

Craig Hensel and his team of volunteers for continued staffing at Potter’s House

YLS President Lisa Arthur and her team for coordinating Pro Bono CLE, the Scrubs versus Suits basketball game fund raiser for the Mustard Seed, and annual Hoppers Picnic and fund raiser for Hampton Elementary Book Buddies Program

Erin Reis, Adam Kerr and their team for the continuing successful Jones Elementary Jones Book project

Martha Peddrick, Judge Vincent, Melissa Duncan and their team for coordinating the Red Cross Blood drive

Sarah Roane, Judge Bill Davis, and Nick Bakatsias for coordinating the most successful fund raiser yet for Legal Aid

Eric Richardson and his team for coordinating the annual Herb Falk Society awards for Pro Bono service

Bob King for our upcoming Lunch & Learn CLE

Sarah Roane for coordinating a very well received (and interesting) annual CLE

Bill Cooke, Nancy Ferguson and their team for raising funds and staffing for construction of our eighth Habitat for Humanity House

Richard Gabriel for coordinating Memorial Resolutions

Eloise Hassell, Doug Henderson, and Judge Vincent on completion of 3 years of service on the GBA Board

Erwin Fuller, Eloise Hassell, and Doug Henderson for their work on the GBA awards committee

Chelsea Anderson for her service as Secretary for both the GBA and 18th Judicial District

Desmond Sheridan for his service as Treasurer for both the GBA and 18th Judicial District

Mark Gaylord and his team for continuing History and Archives interviews

Damon Duncan for keeping our social media active

Doug Tsao for his service as GBA newsletter editor

Pat Kane and Tom Carruthers for their work with the Second Chance Project

Abigail Peoples, Kim Gatling and Margaret Kantlehner for their many contributions to the board

And last but not least, Diane Lowe, our Administrator, for keeping everything together in both the GBA and 18th Judicial District.

Thanks, Ken Keller

Edmunds and Hinnant Receive GBA Distinguished Service Award

The Greensboro Bar Association established the Distinguished Service Award in 1993 to annually recognize a lawyer for exhibiting a deep devotion to the legal profession and an enduring contribution to the administration of justice and the public good through unselfish service. We were fortunate to have two very deserving recipients this year, Robert H. Edmunds, Jr. and Patrice H. Hinnant.

gba may 2017 distinguished service award

Presenter’s comments are available at the following links:  Robert H. Edmunds. Jr. (PDF) and Patrice A. Hinnant (docx)

Don Vaughan Appointed to North Carolina State Banking Commission

Former North Carolina State Senator Don Vaughan of Greensboro has been appointed to the North Carolina State Banking Commission. Vaughan was Deputy Leader in the North Carolina Senate. He also served seven terms on the Greensboro City Council, two as the Mayor Pro Tem.

Vaughan graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with highest honors in 1974. He received his master’s degree in public administration from American University, and received his law degree from Wake Forest University. He practices law regularly in North Carolina District and Superior Courts, Federal Court and he is licensed to practice before the United States Supreme Court.

The North Carolina Banking Commission oversees state chartered banks in North Carolina.

Don Vaughan

Don Vaughan

For more information contact:

Don.Vaughan@Vaughanlaw.com

Cell: (336) 215-0194

Office: (336) 273-1415

North Carolina Banking Commission (919) 814-2000.

Camille Stell

Stell: Generational Differences: 5 Tips for Effective Communication

For the first time in American history, we have four different generations working together. Generational differences affect every aspect of work from recruiting new employees to building effective teams. Our communication skills are being tested with so many different generations competing to speak and be heard.

Who are the players?

  1. Traditionalists were born from 1900 – 1945. They value patriotism, loyalty, hard work and respect. They have a “top down” approach to management. They lived through World War I, World War II and the Great Depression and were greatly influenced by these major events. Their names appear on the doors of many of the law firms across our state.
  2. Baby Boomers were born from 1946 – 1964 and make up the majority of partners in law firms today. Boomers are competitive, idealistic and optimistic. Boomers plan to keep working as long as they can be productive.
  3. Generation Xers were born from 1965 – 1980. They are skeptical, independent and resourceful. The divorce rate tripled during their generation and both their parents worked earning them the moniker “latchkey kids.” They often distrust the permanence of institutional or personal relationships. Many Gen Xers are your supervising attorneys.
  4. Millennials were born from 1981 – 1999 and are the majority of law students, young lawyers and legal professionals today. Millennials are realistic, confident and appreciate diversity. Millennials feel empowered to take positive action when things go wrong – this is an excellent trait for a young professional in a client service driven profession. Parents of Millennials included them in the day-to-day negotiations at home, so Millennials expect as much from the office. This can lead to challenges as Traditionalists and Boomers often lead their teams with a “need to know” mentality rather than inviting all team members to participate in the discussion.

Given the potential for conflict based on these generational gaps, here are five tips to help you maneuver through these challenges.

Where is your sense of tradition? Traditionalists and Boomers value tradition. They are proud of the law firms they built. They also experience conflict with the many changes that have happened in the legal profession. They are particularly troubled by the idea that the practice of law is viewed as a business rather than a profession.

As a result, they often feel Gen-Y and Millennials have no sense of tradition or respect for the ways things have always been done.

Solution: Millennials, honor the past by acknowledging that many things about the law do not change quickly. If you understand the resistance, it may help you develop better language to share your new ideas. Rather than focusing on the fact that “everyone” is using the new tools or the financial benefits, you may also want to focus on how efficiencies better serve clients. Traditionalists and Boomers, remember that financially sound business decisions today provide that the firm will be around for generations to come.

Get Out of Our Way. Millennials are confident and are ready to take action. Millennials often express this in an attitude that says “tell us our goals and get out of our way.” This is reflected in the popular style of mentoring often requested by Millennials – situational mentoring. Boomers were the recipient of traditional mentoring that included hands-on training, shadowing partners in client meetings and the courtroom, participating in long lunches to hear war stories and many introductions to the pillars of the local bar.

Solution: Millennials will benefit from listening and learning. There is a good chance you will not be mentored in the same way as the more established lawyers. Take every opportunity to receive an introduction, to get involved with the various bar associations and to ask for advice.

Honor Your Obligations. Understand the requirements of the job before you take it. If working long hours and weekends is expected, your Boomer Boss will frown upon you having an excuse that prevents you from working those hours.

Boomers, Millennials see work and life as overlapping. The idea of face time, sitting in a chair from 7:00 to 7:00 because that is how it has always been done, has no appeal. You can force Millennials to follow the rules for a while, but following old traditions without a business purpose will result in more turnover in employees and difficulty in recruiting top talent.

Solution: Communicate proactively and make sure everyone has the same expectations. Work must be done, deadlines must be met. Attend required and suggested work events and networking events.

Boomers, make clear your expectations with regard to client contact, billing time, face time in the office, and availability after hours. Also recognize that technology has forever changed the legal profession and be realistic in your expectations of face time.

Legal Writing. The most common complaint by Boomer Bosses about Millennial substantive work skills is the lack of excellent writing skills. This skill is honed by practice.

Solution: Millennials, constantly strive to improve your writing. Learn from the edits and rewrites that your Boomer Boss makes to your drafts.

Problem Solving. Ultimately, clients pay lawyers to resolve problems. Learning how to analyze problems and search for solutions is a key in your development as a valued member of the team.

Solution: Look for opportunities to listen in on negotiations and possible solutions to client problems. Listen to your client and understand what a “win” looks like for them. Attorneys across generations should collaborate to make sure you are working towards the same goal for your client.

Overcoming our stereotypes about generational differences will help us to communicate effectively.

Camille Stell is the Vice President of Client Services for Lawyers Mutual. Continue this conversation by contacting Camille at camille@lawyersmutualnc.com or 800.662.8843.