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Attorneys Appearing in Court

Joan Jett once sang that she “don’t give a damn about my reputation”. The song is an empowering feminist jam about how women no longer needed to act prim and proper to succeed in the world. It also makes it absolutely clear that Joan Jett is not an attorney. To an attorney, reputation is more or less everything; if you’re known as someone who never wins cases, who treats their clients badly, who overcharges, and who doesn’t put in the work, you’re going to go out of business fast.

What is reputation, exactly? In the simplest of terms, it’s the beliefs that are generally held about you. You can affect someone’s opinion of you relatively easily; how you talk, how you dress, and how you act will all change their perception of you as a person. Reputation, however, is not so easily changed; you can be as pleasant, well-dressed, and hard working as you want, but if you have the reputation of a swindler, a prospective client who knows about that reputation will likely still opt not to work with you.

Turning a bad reputation into a good one takes a lot of hard work. You have to start by identifying what, exactly, gave you a bad reputation in the first place. This might be one specific, somewhat catastrophic event, or it might be a sequence of smaller problems that have amalgamated into your reputation. One good way of finding the problem is to survey your former clients and ask them about their experiences. Once you’ve found the problems that are affecting your reputation, figure out what steps you can take to remedy the problem. Advertise that you are taking those steps, so that people know you’re working on the problem. Ensure proper training for all of your employees so that the changes are properly executed. Continue to survey clients in order to understand if the changes have had the desired effect.

The best way of going about reputation management, however, is to avoid getting a bad reputation in the first place. Forbes has tips on managing your personal reputation; easy things like be kind, do what you say you will, be honest. Managing your reputation as an attorney has a lot in common with those tips. Reputation management also means asking for client feedback, and acting to remedy strained or broken attorney-client relationships as quickly and efficiently as possible. Be empathic. Listen to your clients. Don’t take on more clients that you have time for. Always try to get the best outcome for your client. Simple things, really, but incredibly important if you want a good reputation.

There are times where something might come up, like a family emergency, and you’ll need someone to appear at court in your stead. The last thing you want is to not show up; that could irrevocably tarnish your reputation. Instead, use our services to get a special appearance attorney; we value our reputation, too, so our network includes the hard-working, diligent, and intelligent appearance attorneys.