Clients as friends as Clients
post # 542 — May 14, 2008 — a Client Relations post
Daniel F. Hunter, Special Counsel at Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP in New York has posed the following questions:
1) Should friends become clients? I am often afraid to ask friends for legal work because it might “taint” our friendship and make me feel like a service provider any time I go over to their house and see their kids, etc.
2) Should clients become friends? When this happens I feel I am less able to give objective advice and I sense that the clients feel like they can ask me legal questions at any time of day or night. For example, if we play squash all they want is free legal advice on the squash courts. Very frustrating.
I would vote ‘no” for both cases. For me, there’s all the difference between knowing how to be friendly with clients and actually being friends who socialize regularly.
But others, I think, might vote differently.
What do the rest of you lawyers, consultants, accountants, financial planners and other advisors out there think?