Are attorneys scary? For five new Certified Legal Nurse Consultants the answer was Yes until they spent a day exhibiting to attorneys with a CLNC® Mentor and me.
These five CLNC consultants walked out of the exhibit hall with eight reasons why attorneys are not scary at all. Click on the video above to watch the live interviews or to read the video transcript.
Vickie: When Vickie Milazzo Institute exhibits at legal conferences with legal nurse consultants they usually start out the day terrified of attorneys. It’s fulfilling to witness the transformation that happens with the legal nurse consultants by the end of the day. I want you to hear from them directly about how they promoted themselves and their legal nurse consultant salary, so I interviewed them at the beginning of the day and at the end of the day to see just how scary attorneys really are.
Sherrolyn, what’s so scary to you about attorneys?
Sherrolyn: The most scary thing about attorneys to me is the first time that I came in contact with one I was on the opposite side of the table and it was like, “Well, what did you do?” So it was like being sent to the principal’s office and nobody wants to be sent to the principal’s office. Ever! That’s the most scary thing for me.
Vickie: So you associate attorneys as an adversary and today you’re in the exhibit hall and your goal is to turn these attorneys into a professional friend. So let’s see if we can turn that around for you and I’ll check back later in the day.
Sherrolyn, earlier you said that you thought attorneys would be like going to the principal’s office and I’ve been watching you and actually you’re knocking it out of the park with these attorneys. So they’re really not scary are they?
Sherrolyn: Not as scary as I thought. It’s like talking to the doctors I work with. Sometimes the doctors are a little cranky and you have to break them out of their head space, but once you do that, you start having a normal conversation. It gets easier, so it’s just talking to the attorney without attempting to hard sell.
Vickie: Yes, and what I liked about you is that you just have a conversation. You don’t come across like you’re trying to sell anything. You’re just talking to the attorneys and that makes them comfortable when you discuss your legal nurse consultant salary. So I’m so glad to see that they’re not as scary as you thought they would be.
Sherrolyn: So am I!
Vickie: This is V. V, what’s scary to you about attorneys?
V: They’re intimidating because they speak so eloquently and that can be a little intimidating when you’re not used to it. They get their point across, their knowledge is just a different breed and I’m not used to them yet.
Vickie: I know this is your first time exhibiting and I know you’re a little frightened of attorneys. I’m going to check back with you at the end of the day to see how you’re feeling then.
V: Okay, great!
Vickie: V, earlier you said that you were intimidated because attorneys are so eloquent and then off video you mentioned that they can persuade and get what they want through language and articulation. Alright, now that you’ve been here talking to these attorneys, are they still intimidating?
V: Not nearly as intimidating. They’re more like real-life people and they’re easier to talk to once you have a few key, probing questions for them. It’s working out very well. I’m learning a lot and I’m a lot more comfortable than I was.
Vickie: So just practicing and doing it helps you, doesn’t it?
V: Yes. This has been an enormous help.
Vickie: Often I’ll work with somebody and they’re very shy, but I don’t think that’s you. You’re not that shy of a person. But I’ve even had shy people say “I just had to get myself out there and talk about myself and my legal nurse consultant salary to find out that these attorneys are not really scary.”
V: They’re real people.
Vickie: Absolutely. Thank you.
Michele, you mentioned to me that you’re not afraid of attorneys.
Michele: No I’m not.
Vickie: But, that you’re a little nervous to get into this exhibit hall. So tell me what you’re nervous about.
Michele: I’m nervous about the next question, what to say after the initial greeting.
Vickie: I know you’ve been practicing. Right?
Michele: I have been. The nervousness is not so much about what do I do, it’s the actual doing it.
Vickie: Right. I’m going to check in with you at the end of the day and see if the actual doing is not so hard after all.
Earlier Michele, you shared with me that you’re not afraid of attorneys but that you were nervous about talking to them. And so, tell me, has that shifted for you here today?
Michele: It has shifted! I feel a lot more comfortable and more confident. The CLNC Mentor has been with us and she’s awesome for those questions that I didn’t know how to answer exactly. She’s steps in and starts to answer them. I have gained confidence.
Vickie: And I want to say I am very impressed with everybody because our mentors do demonstrate how to discuss your legal nurse consultant salary and it’s great to see you guys come behind and actually learn from that demonstration. You said something else to me that is important. You said, “I’m an expert at what I do. And when I’m talking to attorneys about my expertise, that’s when I’m most comfortable.” Did that happen today?
Michele: Yes, as nurses we’re comfortable in our specialty and we are confident in what we do. And so, not being confident with being new to this was what was making me nervous. But as we go on and I start talking about how I answered court claims for the federal government, it becomes very easy and I feel more at ease about it.
Cathy, you’re here exhibiting for your first time as a CLNC consultant and you told me that attorneys are not scary. A lot of it has to do with the fact that your first degree was in advertising, so tell me how that helped you not to fear attorneys.
Cathy: Well, when you meet with the client, which is the same as an attorney, they want to know what you’re going to do for them and most of them want just three points about you. One of the best things you can do is ask questions so that tells you what your next question to them will be.
Vickie: Engage that person. Just get a conversation started, just pretend like this is somebody you’re meeting casually and don’t be so vested in the outcome. Great advice.
Cathy: The thing about working with people in advertising is that if you know what you are talking about, you can convince them of anything. So, be confident, give them a few facts, not more than three or four, about yourself and the product or whatever you’re selling. And they will remember you just because of your smile or something you said to them. Create a relationship between you and the attorney or their group. That helps you when you call back, because you always follow up and say, “I saw you two days ago and I’m just following up to say hello and ask if you got home safely and how you’re doing.”
Vickie: So great advice for any beginner. Attorneys don’t have to be quite so scary if you think about them as more of a friend and as someone you’re trying to develop a relationship with.
Cathy: I agree.
Vickie: Thank you so much. Teena, the question I have is, “Are attorneys scary to you?”
Teena: Yes, very scary. They’re a group of people that I’ve never had to talk to before. I talk to CEOs, I talk to department heads and I talk to doctors and they don’t scare me. But I’ve been doing it for a long time. So yes, I’m a little nervous that I’ll seem out of place.
Vickie: Okay, I want you to remember what you just told me – that you talk to some pretty high-level people every day, CEOs, doctors and when you’re in that exhibit hall you remember that when you’re talking to these attorneys. I’m going to check in later to see if they’re still so scary.
Teena: Okay, I hope they’re not!
Vickie: Teena, this morning you said, “I can talk to CEOs, I can talk to hospital administrators, but these attorneys, they’re scary.” Now we’re approaching the end of the day, are they really scary?
Teena: No, they’re not scary. Once you talk to them socially, they smile and they talk to you and they’re willing to answer your questions and you can get them to talk about what they need to talk about too. I find that it really is true when you say they know law, I know medicine. And for me that made a big difference today.
Vickie: Very good. I really enjoyed observing you actually talking about your core expertise as a nurse.
Teena: Thank you.
Vickie: As you can see, these are real legal nurse consultants. They started out this day saying “I’m afraid of attorneys. They’re scary.” By the end of the day not a single legal nurse consultant believes that attorneys are scary. You heard everything from, “All I have to do is talk to them like they’re a real person because they are a real person” to “All I have to do is put myself out there.”
Success Is Yours!
P.S. Comment and share what you do to make attorneys less scary.