We live in a world that is diverse in a variety of ways: ethnicity, race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, class, physical ability, etc. In order to provide the highest quality customer service to your clients, thinking about other cultures and how you can best help all types of people is important.
Laura Bagby, Communications Director at the Illinois Supreme Court Commission on Professionalism, wrote about the importance of "cultural competency" for law firms in her recent article for Attorney at Work.
Bagby states that cultural competency "refers to the cognitive, emotional, and behavioral skills that lead to appropriate and effective communication with people of other cultures."
One way to improve your cultural competency is to think about the different types of people in your community and the different needs they have. Then your firm can consider the various way your firm can meet those needs through customer service, representation in your marketing, and business operations.
Bagby suggests hiring translators and interpreters for clients who may speak another language like Spanish or American Sign Language. On your website, you can ensure your website is accessible by addressing issues like using readable fonts and colors, including alt text on all images that describe the image, and putting captions on videos.
For more tips on how to evaluate and improve your law firm's cultural competency, click here to read Bagby's article for Attorney at Work.