Addleshaw Goddard has linked with Cranfield School of Management to help the law firm develop a system of key accounts management similar to that used by major corporations.
The project is part of Addleshaws’ client development centre (CDC), which has been attracting glowing reviews from in-house counsel involved in the programme, including Barclays Bank.
A pilot scheme of 12 partners has seen them schooled on accounts management and the development a three to five-year joint business plan with selected clients.
Addleshaws’ aim is to build up an in-depth knowledge of clients’ businesses and align the firm’s advice and service with the clients’ strategic business goals.
The scheme is set to be rolled out to all of Addleshaws’ partners.
CDC head Jim Hever said: “Cranfield has developed a set of tools and technologies which is making it easier for our partners to deal with [key accounts management].
“If you come to a client with the agenda of asking for more money, they’ll likely tell you to take off. But if you come with a better value proposition to link up to help advance your mutual goals, you’ll find yourselves having a very different conversation.”
He added: “It’s about getting a quid pro quo investment return and building your relationships with clients so they see that you do actually care and it’s not just another business development cliché.”