Going Face-to-Face in a Digital World: Josh Maxwell Interviewed About Singapore Expansion

Within minutes of first meeting a tax lawyer, people share some of the most private facts about themselves or their business. How much money did you earn? What is the value of your assets? Do you plan to move? This is information people usually guard closely but must divulge to their tax attorney to ensure reporting compliance. As awkward as it may be to tell a stranger these details, getting audited or fined by the IRS is  much worse.

As the global economy grows and people conduct more business across continents and seas, these client-tax attorney conversations are often happening virtually through computer and smartphone screens.

Hone Maxwell, LLP Managing Partner Josh Maxwell recognized that, for many, the digital pendulum had swung too far. Having already built the San Diego-based international tax and business law firm on the concept of “relationships matter,” Josh wanted to ensure that the firm’s Asia-based clients could also have the in-person meetings that foster much-needed trust. The world may have gone high-tech, but the strongest relationships, Josh found, are sometimes still analogue.

In an interview with Singapore podcaster Simon Lim, Josh discusses how his deep connections to Asia, its people and its diverse cultures, coupled with his desire to meet people literally where they are, fueled his decision to expand HMLLP into Singapore.

“It’s all about our relationships — meeting people, being face-to-face, building that trust,” Josh told Simon. “Post COVID, people said, ‘I could do Zoom more.’ But I thought, ‘No, I’m going to go even more now to Asia to build these relationships and gain their trust.’”

The in-depth conversation on the “Nights with Simon” podcast explored Josh’s client-service philosophies, lessons learned on how to create and maintain strategic business relationships (hint: make it about friendship!) and, of course, the latest international tax law trends that U.S. citizens or green card holders overseas and those in Asia with U.S. economic ties must know.

He also shared his advice for creating healthy international business relationships, like those he and the HMLLP team have built. At the top of the list: Get out of your office.

Potential partners and clients can learn about the HMLLP international tax and business lawyers’ skills and experience from their resumes, he said. “But what these people need to know is that we are a good professional… someone that the client can talk to and can trust.”

Disclaimer: Hone Maxwell LLP articles and blogs are not intended as legal advice. Additional facts, facts specific to your situation or future developments may affect subjects contained herein. Seek the advice of an attorney before acting or relying upon any information herein.

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