The lawyer in the marketing department

Actually, all your lawyers are in your marketing department.

Most lawyers view their job as a defensive one. They use phrases like, "keeping you out of trouble."

Unfortunately, when they interact with the public or with a partner or even a landlord, they are marketing your organization, whether they want to or not.

Consider the case of a drugstore chain that accidentally sent out a second rebate check (for $4) to hundreds or thousands of customers. The lawyer drafted a note telling customers (remember, these are the valuable ones, the ones that take action) to discard the second check. Included this line:

We are informing you of this error so you do not incur returned check fees
from your bank, since the check is not valid. Please destroy the duplicate

So, in other words, if you cash the second check by mistake, you’re going to have to pay your bank a $25 bounced check fee on a $4 check because of an error the drugstore made.

One of my favorite lawyers has come to understand that she can do better for her company, negotiate better deals and build better, more profitable customers by acting like a marketer first, a lawyer second.

Scratch that.

Acting like a marketer first is being a good lawyer.