The American Bar Association's 2006 National Lawyer Referral Workshop was held in Albuquerque, N.M. from Wednesday, Oct. 11 through Saturday, Oct. 14, during the International Balloon Fiesta. Claudia J. Staten, manager of the MBA's Lawyer Referral Service, attended the conference.
Wednesday, the first day of the conference, was filled with programming geared toward those who are new to Lawyer Referral Services. The "LRIS Nuts & Bolts" training gave an overview of program operations, quality standards and current issues. This program was followed by a welcoming reception where LRS coordinators and directors from around the country had the opportunity to meet and discuss their programs.
Thursday included programs such as "Essential Skills for Supervisors" and "How to Keep Potential Clients on Track." These programs, and others, highlighted strategies for employee development, appropriate customer service techniques for answering client e-mails, handling difficult callers and keeping control of the calls. In the evening, the ABA offered busses for to visit the Balloon Park for "Glowdeo" where hundreds of hot air balloons were tied down and illuminated; a fireworks display followed.
Friday offered more programs to help improve placement in search engine listings, requirements about effective compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and how to restore good relations to prevent complaints.
Claudia noted, "I found it helpful to hear how other states work on lawyer-client relations to avoid unhappy client complaints."
The conference ended on Saturday with Marketing to the Hispanic Community, where the ABA provided insight into how to approach marketing to the fastest growing ethnic population in the country.
The Massachusetts Bar Association's Lawyer Referral Service is one of the largest referral services of its kind. To join the LRS, please contact the department at (617) 338-0556 or via e-mail at [e-mail lrs].