It used to be that clients learned about your firm by visiting your office, so having a professional-looking space was important. Today hundreds if not thousands more people will visit your website. However, many firms aren’t making a good impression on these potential clients.
Many years ago, I needed the services of a business attorney. This was a serious matter for me; I was having a dispute with a (now former) business partner, and the financial stakes were relatively high. At the time, I had never hired legal counsel and didn’t know what to expect, but I asked for recommendations and was referred to a gentleman we’ll call Mr. Smith.
When I went to his office for an initial meeting to see if he was right for the job, the first thing I noticed was the lingering scent of stale cigarette smoke. I waited awkwardly in the lobby until a rather unfriendly and unkempt intern appeared, telling me brusquely to sit down and wait. Having done so, I then amused myself in an ancient dusty chair by perusing an assortment of news magazines... published many years earlier. The fun of nostalgic reminiscence in these antiquated articles had worn off long before Mr. Smith finally appeared 30 minutes later. He came shuffling into the waiting room, rumpled and dirty, wearing ragged clothing and smoking a cigarette, which he used to gesture me into his office. I was not encouraged.
Needless to say, I didn’t hire Mr. Smith. I later learned ...