You want to get clients. You know that to do so you have to increase your legal nurse consultant visibility. How do you do that? In part 1, I discussed writing as a tool of gaining visibility. One of the best ways to attract attorneys to your practice is by teaching attorneys. This is something LNCs with all levels of experience can do. It is typically easier to present to attorneys if you have a depth of clinical knowledge and an understanding of what attorneys need.
I have presented to attorneys at local and state bar association meetings, state trial attorney conferences, national trial attorney conferences and in webinars. It is fun and challenging.
What is your goal when you are teaching attorneys?
First, the cardinal rule is that your goal is to demonstrate your expertise by presenting interesting and helpful information. You are a guest within the attorney world. If you use the opportunity to sell, sell, sell why the attorneys should hire you, you’ll likely be met with blank stares and never allowed back.
Attorney groups who have invited non-attorney speakers who abused the opportunity to sell become wary of letting another such person take the podium.
What should you be teaching attorneys about?
Know who is going to be in your audience. Understand the type of cases the attorneys handle. I once saw a nurse present a topic as if she was teaching long term care clinicians. The attorneys gave her blank stares. After I coached her about how to turn her topic around, she was much better at relating her material to teaching attorneys.
You would present very different information to bar associations, whose members come from diverse practices versus a specialty interest group within a state trial attorneys’ association. A subset of the members of the bar association will handle cases involving medical records. Others will have no interest in the subject, and only there to get continuing legal education credits. Some will be turned off by graphic pictures.
For example, when I was new to teaching attorneys, I taught a bar association group about common medical malpractice issues. I showed pictures of stage III and IV pressure sores to a group who had just picked up their cups of coffee and cherry danishes. I watched one attorney look at the picture of the stage IV pressure sore, pick up her napkin and carefully hide the danish beneath it.
If I were given a chance to teach the same group today, I would pick a topic of broader appeal, such as how to obtain medical records, or how electronic medical records are affecting analysis of cases.
Trial lawyers have a higher level of understanding of medical issues (and more exposure to gruesome pictures). They love stories of cases, inside information about how the healthcare system works, and cutting edge tips. Since they are used to being lectured at, think about ways you can make your presentation interactive when you are teaching attorneys.
For example, I took a group of plaintiff attorneys with an interest in nursing home cases though an aging simulation. I adapted a simple aging simulation originally presented to nurses and made it the focus of teaching attorneys. This simulation involved depriving them of one of their senses and then I had them do activities while handicapped. They breathed through straws, wore ear plugs, fed each other while blind folded, put on diapers, looked at the world through thick glasses, put on tight knee immobilizers and so on.
In our post simulation debriefing, we discussed what they experienced and how it would affect the way they relate to disabled or elderly people. I watched the “ah has” surface.
Select your topic well, know your audience, build on your expertise, and watch the prospects ask for your help. Get a dozen more tips at this link.
Pat Iyer has been teaching attorneys for over 16 years. She owned an independent legal nurse consulting business for 25 years before selling the company in 2015. Pat works with LNCs to develop their businesses through her coaching program at LNCAcademy.com