Are You Sucking Up to Your Attorney-Clients Just a Little Too Much?

My staff at Vickie Milazzo Institute is strong, opinionated and sometimes even mouthy – just the way I like them. When we hire a new employee I sometimes notice that at first they’re reluctant to give an opinion that’s different from the majority of the outspoken staffers. They are often a little slow to speak up and when they do it’s obvious they’re just tagging onto the others. It’s like the new person is afraid to get off the fence and jump down onto either side until they know what side everybody else is on. Here in Texas, if you’re sitting on a fence in a pasture full of longhorn cattle that may be a good idea. But when you’re in my conference room, it’s not a tactic for success with me or with the rest of the staff.

Here’s what happens when someone is just sucking up to me or a manager or the group at large and not really speaking for themselves; they get zero credit for their input. Their light, if any, may as well be under a bushel. If I wanted to hear a parrot, I would have hired one. Instead, I hired them for their expertise and I want to hear their opinion – whether I agree with it or not.

This sucking up temptation also applies to you as a Certified Legal Nurse Consultant. When you’re in an attorney’s office discussing a case, that attorney doesn’t want you to be a “yes” person.

Attorneys are used to thinking for themselves and they expect the same of their CLNC® consultants. They are used to intelligent disagreement and are trained to see both sides of an issue. They don’t need you to suck up; they need you to give them your professional opinion which should include both the strengths and weaknesses of the case (what I call “the good, the bad and the ugly”). That will help them cover all the issues and give them the ability to make their own intelligent decisions and judgments about the case. Knowing the strengths of the case is of little value if the attorney is blindsided by the “bad” side of the case at trial or in settlement conference.

When your attorney-clients get to trial, they’ll thank you for being your own person, even if that means sometimes giving opinions they clearly did not want to hear.

At Vickie Milazzo Institute I encourage people to speak up. New attorney-clients might not be as kind in helping you to develop your confidence. Don’t keep your light under a bushel – speak up and speak out.

Success Is Inside!

P.S. Comment and share how presenting a dissenting opinion makes you feel.

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