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Make clients happier – offer fewer choices?

Legal blogger Matthew Homann at The (Non)Billable Hour cites research indicating that giving people too many choices can overwhelm them and make them less likely to make good choices. Homann suggests that:

[N]ext time you have a client conversation, remember that you may be better off discussing a few options instead of many. Instead of giving your clients lots of choices, curate the list down to a solid few. You’ll end up with happier, less-confused clients who will thoughtfully consider their options, instead of being overwhelmed by them.

That makes sense — clients pay lawyers to exercise professional judgment, which can certainly include curating of choices.

Of course, if later on things were to go wrong, the client might pointedly ask, “why didn’t you advise me that I had other choices?”

[UPDATED 2010-08-20: This is part of the philosophy underlying the PRECUT contract concept. See also this blog posting, “The ‘Less’ Feature,” by Scott Adams, author of the Dilbert comic strip, and the additional reading on this topic cited at the Hacker News discussion of that posting.]