[00:00:00] Today's presentation is about the two things that the most successful attorneys do that the rest do not. And Let me just get started here. And what I'm going to do is I'm first, I'm going to do the presentation and then after the presentation like we do every week, I'll be taking questions and and you can pretty much ask anything that you want either about the presentation or just general career questions and so forth that you may have.
[00:00:23]Okay, so they could start it. So this is just a very quickly about a couple of attorneys I was working with fairly recently. Two attorneys approached me recently looking for jobs both were very self-confident and had every reason to be successful. But both attended top law schools did well.
[00:00:39]Both got jobs in major firms out of law school. But recently lost their jobs and one had lost her because they were fired and then the other lost their job because they quit. And and so both of them had made very similar mistakes and and it's very easy for me to tell the types of us attorneys that are going to be successful in their careers and the [00:01:00] ones that are not.
[00:01:00] And I can usually pick it up fairly quickly. In the conversation. And I'm going to try to teach you today a little bit about some of the ways that you can structure your career in a way that will make you successful. The attorney was fired. It was very tactical in the way he approached his career and and not strategic.
[00:01:17] And the attorney. Who quit actually approached a career strategically, but not tactically. So in order to do very well as an attorney, it's important that you learn how to be both strategic and tactical. Okay. So this is a little bit about what a tactical attorney does and and so tactical attorney for the most part do things that are related to the way people see them.
[00:01:40] And and believe that these tactics are going to get them ahead. They attack the one that was fired had worked in a very prestigious New York law firm. And then for about a year and then he was let go. And he did very well. He went to a top 10 loss or top five law school actually.
[00:01:53] And that was probably one of the top 10 students in his class who received a reward for being in the top 12 or something. [00:02:00] But it was, he was probably in the top 10 and he had a history of, very good academic achievement and life achievement. And honestly Looked like he was going to be very successful, but his problem which is a very common problem was that he didn't have a good strategy.
[00:02:15] Things start off very well for him. He was worked on different matters. He, was very smart very, actually very smart and. But he spent, soon made some mistakes and what those were mainly questioning various assignments. So he would go back to people that assigned him to work and tell them that it wasn't necessary because it wouldn't help the client, or it was a waste of money because he already knew the answer.
[00:02:38] And he believed that the assignments and the stuff he was being asked to do we're wasting the client's money and he honestly may have been. And this is a mistake that a lot of young attorneys make. And he may have been right about all that. But the problem is that the people that are signing you work in many law firms I really do want to work things in a certain way.
[00:02:55]They may want to feel powerful. They may want to increase the bills that the clients are paying. [00:03:00] There's all sorts of things that could be happening. So this attorney got the first performance review and was actually just asked to leave the firm. They told him that he got up a couple of months to look for a job and good luck.
[00:03:12] And so now that's what he's doing. He's going into the office each day and just sitting there and wondering what happened and feeling of course like he was right and the firm was wrong and and puzzled about why he did so well in law school and why, why what's happening to him is happening.
[00:03:28] What I recommended to this attorney is because he was such little experience and you're going to see a little experience. I'm talking about six months of experience. I told them to start looking for a judicial clerkship so he can start a judicial clerkship hopefully in June or something along those lines.
[00:03:42] And and when he does that to look like to have two new law firms that you went, it worked for a year in which a clerk, and this will save his career. And I also told him that it was gonna be very difficult for him to get a job, because if you're looking for a job and you're coming from a major law firm and you're looking for a job within six months the odds are pretty good that you're going to have a very hard time [00:04:00] finding a job because law firms are going to assume.
[00:04:02] That there was something that you did wrong and they're going to be a little bit afraid of hiring you. So I told him to start looking for a clerkship and which I think was pretty good advice. But his response was that he wanted to stay in big law and and that, that was really all he wanted.
[00:04:18] He was concerned about making money. And so forth. I gave him a pretty long lecture about what he was doing wrong. I told him that he should have been doing what was asked of him explained to him the difference between being a soldier which is someone that just does work and a general, which is the one that plans the type of work that's being done.
[00:04:36]I also told him. That the partners that are assigning him work were paid based on how much work they're assigned to him and and how much he produces. And and that it was important for him to do the work in a certain type of way. And and I also explained that the partners were excited.
[00:04:52]To for him to be doing work for, for them to make, being able to make money. And it wasn't really his responsibility to [00:05:00] fully question assignments and so forth, and that what he had done by constantly question assignments was actually became a liability.
[00:05:06]Because you'd not only was doing the work in a way to design, but he was trying to prevent the firm from making money partners with cases and so forth. He was preventing them from making money. And they were worried that he was talking behind their back and saying they were having to do unnecessary work and stuff.
[00:05:20] And he was literally standing in the way of the firm and how can you be expected to advance any law firm. If you're trying to, if you're sticking at you, you're standing in the way the firm. And so this is a thinking process that a lot of young attorneys have, and I've seen it.
[00:05:34]Even older attorneys have it and partners have it. And attorneys at all levels, the moment you start standing in the way of your employer you have to realize you're only one person and this is a giant institution with all sorts of people to support and larger agendas are outside yourself.
[00:05:49] And if you want to make a difference, you can certainly go start a solo practice or something. But this is just not how it works. And most employers, it'd be no different if you were a hardcore Republican trying to go to work and in a super [00:06:00] liberal Democrat, democratic government office, it would just, it would be very hard for you to change the way things are being done.
[00:06:05] And then vice versa. If you were a, a super liberal trying to working with hardcore Republicans, it's just, you can't change the direction of something, especially as a young attorney. It's just not something yeah, you can do Now I sent this attorney jobs all over the country.
[00:06:19] I told them you'd have to look in multiple markets because it was going to be very difficult for him to find a job. With six months of experience in New York, I told him he'd have to look at small firms as well as large firms both him that he needed to start looking immediately. And he said what most people think when they're in trouble that he wanted to think about it.
[00:06:38] And didn't want to take Any form of action right away. Instead he wanted to think about it. And as if you know what was happening to him, wasn't really happening. So I sent him several law firms, large firms and small firms. And. Then he proceeded to look at each firm very carefully. And because he had such great grades and so forth, he believed [00:07:00] that he could work anywhere.
[00:07:01] And and he talked about how each firm wasn't suitable. So he had reasons to exclude pretty much almost every firm that he was sent, except for a few really good ones. And what I realized about this attorney Was that he lacked a strategy. And if you think of what my strategy for him was, my strategy was to keep them employed and keep his career on track my strategy, which is why recommend a clerkship which has nothing to do with me making a commission or anything.
[00:07:28] It was putting his needs first. But. Then my next strategy was to have them look in other markets where his skills would be more valued and people would be willing to overlook. You've been out someplace for six months and that was strategic, but he was tactician. He was a tactician. What he wanted to do was he wanted to make sure that he stayed in New York, that he continued making a lot of money.
[00:07:48] And and that was all that mattered to him. He wasn't concerned with the fact that, as a 25 or 26 year old your career could be 50 years in the future. I'd say it goes 50, 60 attorneys practicing [00:08:00] their 90th. So 60 plus years and getting himself a good training and so forth at this point of career his immediate tactic was to be in the best firm right away.
[00:08:10] And to pretend like whatever happened to him didn't happen. And, if he'd had a strategy, he would have realized you had to keep her head down. He would have thought about. What it takes to become a partner in a firm. He would've read things about it. He would have studied law firms and and the strategy that you employ is extremely important because most people operate but loose tactics.
[00:08:29]If you have loose tactics and don't know where you're going to make all sorts of mistakes. Like this guy made along the way. And I see people like this attorney, by the way, every year, and this year I saw a ton of them. Last year, I saw a ton of 'em this year. I was even worse than most chairs because I'm in, because of this virus and people losing their jobs.
[00:08:45] And so people just don't make the right decisions because they're not thinking strategically would be, I go to a clerkship and then my resume's even stronger, even though this stuff happened, I learned a lesson and then I go to a better firm. But that's how he was thinking.
[00:09:00] [00:08:59] And. And that's very loose tactics and obviously the result is unemployment, longterm, unemployment than being disaffected with the legal profession, doing something else with your career, not being happy. Thinking that someone wronged you being angry never really understanding things sometimes never, or maybe later in your career when you become an, a position of authority and maybe not even ever reaching your full potential because you're too tactical.
[00:09:24] Which happens a lot. So the next one is surely strategic attorney and the other attorney was a strategist. He knew exactly what he wanted. And so some people go into law firms with a strategy. Some people go into any employer with a strategy. Some people go into a law firm that when I was practicing, I knew several people that went to work in law firms and all they wanted to do.
[00:09:46]Was being the us attorney's office. So they worked as closely as they could with any attorney that had ever worked there. They did a good work and they had a strategy. And that was it. I saw a lot of attorneys like that actually in the firms that I worked in. And this other [00:10:00] attorney I'm talking about though, was a strategist and he knew exactly what he wanted.
[00:10:03] He wanted to be in a partner that rapidly advance him. To be a partner he wasn't interested in anything else. He'd also gone to a top law school not done quite as well as this other attorney, but believed that he was entitled to work in a law firm and be a partner and wanting to do that.
[00:10:18] And so all his decisions were based around that about, going to a firm where he could make be where he could make partners. So what he did is he joined a top law firm. Out of law school and very quickly realized that it was going to be hard for him to advance that there wasn't really going to be a lot of advancement opportunity.
[00:10:35]He realized that people were not making partner there. He realized that it was going to be very difficult for that to happen that there just was no chance of that happening. His strategy was to quit which a lot of people do too. And then believe because you have really good qualifications that a recruiter can find your position and without having to learn where you can advance quickly without you having to learn the ropes or be trained or do anything.
[00:10:58] And. The idea that [00:11:00] maybe because you went to a good law school, the earned hung, all these things. You've got good grades and this guy was wrong too, because he didn't have good tactics. He had a strategy, but but but that's the strategy really wasn't going to get him anywhere.
[00:11:12]He knew what he wanted to do in the long run, but nothing really ever happened because he didn't employ the proper tactics. So here there are the tactical realities, if you want to be like a partner, for example, in, in most law firms, but in a major law firm you typically need to go to a good law school, but you don't always need to.
[00:11:30]It's not. It's not the be all end all it can help and especially if you do really well and to getting into a law firm early in your career and then you need to be become indispensable to other people in your in your practice area. So you need to be very strong and become indispensable other partners.
[00:11:47] And then generally if you want to be a partner in most major law firms, at least an equity partner you're going to need at least a few million in business. And so for young attorneys that are on this call for the first time or that are, don't understand how things work. Most [00:12:00] firms have a non-equity partners, which you can become typically without any business.
[00:12:04]But once you become a non-equity partner, then they expect you in order to become an equity partner, which means you share in the profits. And so a non-equity partners like a. Like a senior associate with a title. He made me make a little bit more money. And then an equity partner is a a partner that actually shares in the profits of the business.
[00:12:21]So you can make a lot more money and this other attorney thought that, and typically to be an equity partner, you need to have business. So this other attorney thought his law school and grades were enough. But he didn't understand that in order to get where he wanted to go, he needed to employ tactics, which were stay in the law firm for a long time and worked there.
[00:12:38]And in order to get his his goal of advancing to become a partner and do all the things and the tactics you need to employ to get there. So this is real quickly the interplay of strategy and tactics. And this isn't a very long presentation today. For those of you that it seems a little, that it seems a little bit, so we will take a lot of questions and after this, but.
[00:12:58] The critical interplay of [00:13:00] strategy and tactics and is that strategy is really the process just to figuring out where you want to go. So if you want to be a partner in a major law firm, if you want to be an important politician or go to the us attorney's office to start your own firm. So yeah.
[00:13:14]You need to have a strategy. So the strategy is just, what do you want? And then and then how are you going to do that? So typically people will have a goal which has a strategy and then they'll have a way of getting there. And then a tactics are the means by which you achieve your goal.
[00:13:28] Meaning you work hard, you'll take positions that bring you closer to your goal constantly. If your strategy is to be I work in the us attorney's office. You may want to go to a firm where there's a lot of former us attorneys and and that's going to be your closer, or you may want to do a clerkships, you get exposed to the government, the government and so forth.
[00:13:44] And if you want to be it's just, you have to employ different tactics to get to where you want to go. And and a lot of people don't. And so in order to, To, to, to get where you do want to go, though, you need to make the best strategic decisions before you make tactical decisions and tactics [00:14:00] help you implement your strategy.
[00:14:01]You have to understand the big thing I always ask people is understanding what they want to do with their career, because once you know what you wanna do with your career and you make that decision. Then you can employ tactics to get there. And so that's a question that everyone should be asking themselves fairly early on based on what you think appeals to you.
[00:14:19] And then once you understand that, and then very few people do. You can get to where you're wanting to go. So I asked this attorney, what are you, what do you want to do? And and he said, he didn't know. And so if you don't know what you want to do, then none of the tactics you have are gonna ever take you closer to success.
[00:14:34] If this attorney wanted to be a partner in a law firm, he would have conducted himself differently. If you wanted to this, the first attorney, if he wouldn't have questioned his assignments, if you wanted to be a partner in a law firm, he wouldn't have, he would have learned everything you could about the people around him and and what to, how to, Get them to help him instead of questioning everything.
[00:14:51] And then even after he went off track, you would have tried to, salvage himself by applying to firms all over the might have openings and doing the clerkships and so forth. So that's the idea of a [00:15:00] strategy and you really do need a strategy and. I always say that, the best strategy is typically whatever you want, the tactics you use, you should always have a strategy to go somewhere, in the long run.
[00:15:11] That's good for you. It may not be to be a partner. Some people, their goal is to be a, an author. They're working for a few years and they want to be an author or something and write fiction books. That's fine. But this particular, the first attorney was strategic. And so he didn't do any of these things and.
[00:15:26]What happens is, tacticians think that because they're smart and they can do the work that good things are gonna happen to them. And there's plenty of people out there that are smart. There's plenty of people out there that went to good schools and there's plenty of people that, have lots of great qualifications, but just having that is not enough.
[00:15:41] You need to have. A strategy and you need to be applying that because you'll use those tactics in a way that's going to take you somewhere. So here's a couple of examples I have real quickly, and then we're almost done with this presentation, but it was just two attorneys that want to be partners in major law firms and one uses tactics and the other tactics were strategy.
[00:15:59][00:16:00] The first attorney Ms. Tactics are, and this is very common by the way, are to show up for work and do their job. And so the attorney a gets the best hospital job or the confirm to complete their assignments. They follow the rules and then they hope that after a certain length of time we'll be a partner, but they really don't care one way or another.
[00:16:18]They think maybe they'll go in house maybe they'll find another job. They like they're keeping their ear to the ground. And who knows, this is how the material sort of attorneys approach the career. I would say more than 50% they're just going to work the hard, the hardest they can do the best they can for now and see what happens.
[00:16:34] And then the second attorney employed tactics and strategy. And that would be let me just see here, what, I'm turning three. Yeah, so the second attorney B it's going to play a tax and strategy. And so what that would be is it would be simply making sure that they know where they want to go.
[00:16:48]They they continually adjust their strategy in a way that's going to help them get to where they want to go. So if they set a goal to be a partner, they're going to make sure that they learn about who they get to know, need to know in [00:17:00] the firm to do that. They're going to need to know how much business they need, they're going to need and the kind of hours they need.
[00:17:04] And so I'll just tell you a quick story. When I was in a law firm. That was what my goal was when I was young. And so what I did is I had asked, about all the people that made partner and what they did and what their hours were, how much business they had, who they knew, who they were connected to, what type of cases they worked on, what type of partners they worked with, all these sorts of questions and then what is important.
[00:17:25]And you very quickly get to know exactly what you need to do at each firm, your out to reach your goal. And that would, and then you would have tactics. That would go along with that. One example would be at a firm. I was at, I asked, why didn't this person make partner? And this person make partner.
[00:17:39] And they said this person only billed 2,400 hours and this person built 3,200 hours or something. So I was like, okay, that means that hours are extremely important and that becomes a a measuring stick. And then and then another person I learned made partner because we were very close with.
[00:17:55] A certain partner that had a lot of business. And I was like, that's number two, the things that are important. So then [00:18:00] your tactics become bill hours and bill, and get close to people and you set the rules that you need for each firm. Most attorneys that I speak with have no sense of strategy and tactics and and without that it becomes.
[00:18:13]Very important or very difficult for them to get positions. So let me just see here. So then attorney B many attorneys will have had, numerous jobs in law firms, government in house that don't, have any sort of stability that you would need To be a partner in a major firm.
[00:18:29] I'm not committed to practicing law and they could be partners, senior associates without a lot of business. And some, most people, this is what they do. They flounder, they go from law firm to government in-house to back and forth. They there's nothing consistent. It's just all loose tactics and and no overall strategy. And and that's part of the problem. And if you just deploy loose tactics, you're never gonna really. Get to where you want to go and you'll never reach your full potential. And and this is really what most of the hernias are doing.
[00:18:56]And if you're a been practicing, you're probably doing it. And I would say to [00:19:00] you that it's not too late change. I You can still, come up with a strategy for what you want to do. And then all you need to do is find the tactics that are going to take you there and just keep course correcting along the way.
[00:19:10] I There's a famous Saying no one airplane takes off. It has to make, thousands of course, corrections to get to it's constantly steering and doing all these different things to get where it's going. And if it just took off and was pointed in one direction, we'd never get there.
[00:19:24] It would always be blown up. Of course. And so it's like that with people like a plane knows exactly where it's going. If it's got a pilot in the destination and and it's the same thing with your career, you need to know where you're going and then you need to constantly use the right tactics to get there.
[00:19:40]A plane wall adjusted how much fuel it's burning and the speed, if it needs to, so it can get towards calling. It will do all sorts of things. If it has to be in a certain amount of time, as a strategy. It will do that. There's all sorts of strategies and things that are employed right.
[00:19:54]But very few attorneys had just applied like tactics ever really succeed. And even strategist [00:20:00] often, pure strategists, people that have a strategy that something they want may often not employ the tactics they need to get where they want. You really need to have a very well-defined tactics and and know exactly what you want and where you're going and have a conviction of them.
[00:20:14]So that is about it for the presentation today. So it's just a short presentation and then I will take questions but just being tactical is never enough. You can't ever think that you can just, sit down and work and you have to be able to have the ability to.
[00:20:30] To work towards something and you have to know where you're going, because most people are just using tactics. They think it's okay to show up for work and do the work. They think it's okay to, just bill hours or, and you have to do things with a lot of, with a lot of other things in mind and take the right action.
[00:20:46] So it's interesting. You know that a lot of people become very successful doing very stupid things and very simple things. And without we've been working very hard and they become famous or they make money or they help other people or whatever your goal [00:21:00] is because they have a very good strategy and and they know what they want.
[00:21:04] And then they just employ all the right tactics and they choose that. It's fascinating. And you can really pick up good, a good combination of strategy and tactics. A lot of times from using a mentor. Or someone that kind of gets behind you and helps you with all these things. I hope this presentation has been helpful.
[00:21:21]I am going to take a quick break and just set up some board for questions and then I'll come back and ask answer as many questions as you guys have about this presentation. And then also anything with your careers or that anyone has just give me one second here. I'm going to. Openness fixing, sorry.
[00:21:39]Oh, no Prince. He can only do directors. All right, we are going to get started here. Let me just see here. And I okay. All right, so I'll take the first question. Let me just see here. Okay. The first question let's see here is is billing the most important criteria for a law firm partner.
[00:21:58] Just give me one second. Okay. [00:22:00]
[00:22:00]And the answer to that is generally for law firm partners billing the amount of money that you generate for your firm is the most important, so that can come can come through billings and hours. So it's all about money. If you can, for attorneys.
[00:22:15] So the more. Hours, you build a more firm money. Your firm makes the more clients you bring into your firm and give work to other people. The more money's generated. So just anytime you're working somewhere, just think in terms of money. So the example that I gave you where one person billed 1800 hours and the other bill, or on our 2,400.
[00:22:34]Hours to make partner, and then the other person built eight an hour. Was it 3,100 or something? That's a difference of if someone's billing out at 800 hours, I don't know. So say $700 an hour or something. I That's, it could be quite a bit of money. That's a 490,000. So it's like the more financial contribution 700 more financial contribution you make to your firm.
[00:22:56]The more the more the firm is going to want to reward [00:23:00] you for that. The attorney that bills 2,400 hours is, making the same amount of money generally, but when it's billing 3,100 would make, bringing 490,000 hours, just $700 an hour. So that's how they evaluate people many times Okay.
[00:23:13]Let's see, here. Here is another question. That's a good one. It says I'm curious and experiences, thoughts about how to go about asking for old job back. For context, I left big law after bonus season, but on good terms for regional firm, now I want to go back I left big law. When I appreciate your thoughts, some people have approached this in the past, so yes, you can go back to your firm if you've had a good experience if you did well at your from when you were there.
[00:23:39] And and I don't know why you went to a regional firm but if the law firm has a need in your practice area, meaning there's a need for someone that does your kind of work then. Then they may not be interested in bringing you back. So for example, if corporate is very busy and they're having a hard time finding corporate people, if you had a good experience and then may bring you back.
[00:23:59]And [00:24:00] so that definitely can happen. Typically what you would want to do is call a partner that you worked with very closely when you were there or partners. And and ask them if you can come back and they may say yes, now a lot of times firms won't hire people back. They'll they won't hire them back many times because they're always asking questions.
[00:24:17]When they want, when they're hiring somebody, they're asking, can you do the job, which you guys probably hear me talk about each week, they're asking can you be managed. Will you do the job long term? And do you want the job.
[00:24:29] There question for you is always going to be if they're always going to be wondering actually probably a number of those is going to be whether or not you'll do the job while you're not into the job. Long-term and most of the time people that leave will leave again. That's almost always what happens.
[00:24:45]I would think that you probably would too. I've never, in the 20 plus years I've been running this company I've hired rehired people. I've never had someone that I rehired actually ever come back. I mean that ever stay [00:25:00] more than like a year and a half or something. So everybody that I've ever rehired always leaves again.
[00:25:04] And it's like that in law firms too. Anytime someone leaves a law firm that I've ever known, whether or not they leave as a partner or an associate or whatever, they always leave again. And it's usually for the same reasons they left the first time, it's just, they brainwash themselves about nostalgia and stuff.
[00:25:18]You can certainly get back to your firm, but my guess would be, if you left for a regional firm, you want a more autonomy, you want a more opportunity to make partner. You wanted to make you said after bonus season. So that was important to you. But that would be my thoughts you'll probably leave again.
[00:25:32]So a law firm shouldn't hire you even if you do good work, but if they think you do really good work and you really did get along well with people there, then I don't think that would be much of a problem at all. And they will hire you back and just and they do that all the time.
[00:25:47] It's just can be very difficult. Okay, here's another good question. There's a lot of great questions. I love it. When you guys ask great questions, because this is so helpful to everybody on the call and so far. So thank you for people for asking questions and the more you [00:26:00] asked about her and no question is a stupid.
[00:26:03]Let's see, I'm gaining interest in project finance, New York market as a possible condo latter from classical finance to restructuring and about 10 to a Letham walk-ins Milbank for project finance. If so, when is the best to lateral that I missed the boat. Okay. So that's another great question. So if you, the problem is with with law firms hiring people to do a practice area switch.
[00:26:24] So lateral practice area switches is really what your question's about. You're already doing you're already doing it looks like project fine. You're already doing a finance. So you want to do And you're doing it for me or law firms. So it sounds like you probably have a great record.
[00:26:39]So the odds are, the question is, can you do the job the the answer to that is really going to be your only problem and that's yes, no. And then and then will you do the job long term? Anytime someone's trying to. Switched practice areas. There's always going to be questions about that because, why are they unhappy doing what they're doing?
[00:26:56] Is it because they're not getting the right feedback and, [00:27:00] everyone has all sorts of explanations. But I don't know. So can you do the job? You're obviously smart enough to do the job. If you're doing a regular finance and to switch over to project finance, the problem is a firm like Les Milwaukeeans or Milbank.
[00:27:13]You have to remember You know that these sorts of firms literally have their choice of people. So if Latham Milwaukee through my bank has a an opening and the big markets for project finance, by the way, are Washington DC to a lesser extent Houston and that sort of thing. And then also New York, those are your main project finance markets in the U S but if And then overseas, you've got Hong Kong, Singapore and those are your big to a lesser extent, London.
[00:27:39]But if you want to work at one of those firms, the problem is they're going to hire someone. That already has the experience for the most part, because people with experience we'll want to work with her.
[00:27:47] So it's much easier for them to hire someone. That already has the experienced than you. And and then their concern is going to be that if you switch practice areas, once you may, there may be issues with theater. Again, what's the say the EO [00:28:00] you'll go over to project finance and then want to go back to regular finance, which a lot of people do by the way.
[00:28:05]They do practice areas, switches like that. They think, Oh, I'm going to love this. And then they go over and don't do it. So you have a little bit of a tough road to hoe. My general advice for everyone here is if you do want to switch practice areas like that you probably, for the most part should never use a recruiter because recruiters are hired to bring in people that have similar skills and do the same thing.
[00:28:29] And and they can help you with that. But in terms of a practice area switch, that's a risk. Like recruiters are hired when the person can obviously do the job. When they look like a good risk, because they've been working a long place for a long time, that could be managed.
[00:28:41] They, they look like they want the job and so forth. So here, that would be, my concern would be that I would try to network with project finance people. And also get jobs are get some of that work in my own from of our view. I don't think you've missed the boat. I think you could apply.
[00:28:57] You could even apply through recruiters if you want it [00:29:00] to, but I don't think unless it's a very good one. I don't think they're going to be able to really talk to the right people for you. And even if they could, most of these firms are going to want to hire people. Like at that level that already have the experience.
[00:29:13] So that's my thought. If you want to ask a followup question, it's a great question as well. Okay. Here's another one. Let's see here. Should I remove undergraduate internships from my resume? Application for jobs last year I worked for between college and law school. Yes, you probably should.
[00:29:29]The problem is I think we spoke about this last week, but an internship as an undergrad, isn't it doesn't really show anything about your skills. Your skills really come down to when you start getting trained in a law firm. The only thing that that. That that your resumes to show as a and I just going to keep coming back.
[00:29:45]It's so much easier to do this way for you guys. In turn doesn't show, if you can, internship does not show.
[00:29:51]Okay. This maybe now if your internship was in an example would be like, say you are a you want to be a healthcare [00:30:00] attorney. Or a patent attorney or something related your practice area, if it's related to your practice area, which would be within patent, healthcare.
[00:30:09]Tax. Yeah. Anything along those lines very specialized. If your internships are at all related to your practice area, then sometimes you can, but in general, they don't really care about it. They're more concerned about but if they see for example, if you've worked for five years in the healthcare industry, Here then then they're going to like that.
[00:30:28] And and so that actually can help you. So that's one thing that I would recommend is it's been popular, we've been on, but I don't think you really need to put up. Your undergraduate internships we did a resume presentation last week. You should be able to find them BCG.
[00:30:41] And I would look at that because there are a lot of examples of people that did do internships and so forth. And we talked to them about taking those off. So hopefully that would be helpful for you. Let's see here. Here's a good one. Okay. Here's a good question. Another good question. Yeah.
[00:30:56] Just keep asking questions. They're great questions. I love these questions. See here. [00:31:00] Okay. A year into the pandemic, it feels if we can start talking about the changes that have caused potentially semi-permanent. For those New York city specifically, what changes in work culture and work life balance?
[00:31:09] Do you expect to stick around for the seeable future? Even if things are back to normal later this year, while working from home, maybe just a couple of days a week, be allowed at most firms long-term have expectations about hours and availability gotten any more or less demanding as, or greater respect for work-life balance pounders for associates.
[00:31:28]I hear you're more or less likely to get an email on Saturday night. I can't speak because I'm not an associate in a big law firm in New York city, but I've certainly worked with associates that are and from what I've seen I think that people are able to work at home now.
[00:31:41]And, but I do feel like the same pressures that have always been there are are still there in terms of the hours and maybe even a little bit more a little bit more than they were before, because people are just expected to be right in front of their computer, working all the time.
[00:31:56]I personally think that it would be better. If I was in a suit, I would [00:32:00] rather work like that than in an office. Cause I think working in opposite and some kit, you get a sausage and I do think the changes, I think people will, there'll be a lot more respect from working at home than there has been before.
[00:32:11] So I think that will definitely change. And I think that people will be able to work at home a lot more. I think not only do associates like it, but partners like it too. So I think that there's definitely more work-life balance in terms of working home.
[00:32:24] But I don't know that. The demands have gotten any less and also the inability to a lot of times get in-person feedback and stuff I think is a little bit harmful to some extent. But yeah, I don't think I th I do think it's People are just as likely to get urgent emails on Saturday nights.
[00:32:41]I've certainly talked a lot about before about practicing law and the ability you having to be on all the time and stuff and attorneys don't like that. And there's different practice settings. You just have to remember that, when you're trying to be an attorney in a major law firm, you're really practicing the highest level and it's no different than being like a doctor in an emergency room.
[00:32:58] I Or a surgeon with a rare skill. [00:33:00] Things happen at all hours. And. And companies in jobs and futures and so forth are at risk or opportunities are there for the taking for companies. And and so you have to be able to respond to different hours. The hours can be crazy, but the fact that there's all these interruptions and so far comes with many times just being a very high rank high level.
[00:33:19]Position working for a law firm and that's just kinda how it works. But I don't think things I don't think things, so I don't think things are that much better now that people are able to work at home. I don't think it's changed very much. Okay. Let's see here. I'm a two two L and I'm clerking part-time at a big law firm during the year.
[00:33:39] The clerkship would last until I graduated from law school. And he said have accepted a summer offer from a big firm and a little bit from my plan of resigned from my current position before finals make condition with senior. Two-week notice what else should I do not to burn the bridge. I called you on the partner at HR.
[00:33:54] Wait for cinema resignation email. Should I email my practice group? Any comments would be greatly appreciated. [00:34:00] So if you're a to L and just clerking and working part time, no, I don't think there's any need to email everyone and tell them what you're doing, especially if you're going to a better firm than that's just saying I'm got a job with a better firm than you you later.
[00:34:13]And that's like that upset them. And I would. Tell them, how much you enjoyed the job. I wouldn't even volunteer where you're going. And I would just say thank you. I don't think you need to call and zoom the partner before sending a resignation email. I just think you need to tell them that you're leaving and going to a a new firm or you're taking a job.
[00:34:35]You have a summer associate. Job that you're taking in and tell them that your last day is going to be in a few weeks and that's all I would do. And if you want to work with them during the school year, it was a three hour. See, I'd love to work with you as a three hour as well.
[00:34:46]But yeah, I if you're working for one partner, you can certainly tell them. Or you can just tell HR depending on relationship. I don't think I would email everyone in the department. I would just be very low key about it and not make an issue out of it and be very nice. And [00:35:00] then and then when you want to come back contact them again.
[00:35:02] But, as a two L doing working part time, I don't think that there is, you are, but. I don't think a ton of attention to people coming and going. So I just would be very careful and I certainly would not volunteer where I'm going. Or if you do, that's fine. But if they ask, you can tell them, but anytime you're moving on to something better, you just need to be careful because they may think that you don't want to go back there because you're working in a better firm and it would be great.
[00:35:26] And if he didn't have a good. Opportunity and missed time at the summer to ask some for a full-time job or her telling me you want to interview there with them in the future, even if you don't think that's a possibility right now, you just never know. Things can always change. Okay. Let me see here.
[00:35:40]Okay. So here's an interesting question. Okay. For a law student, what's the best time to reach out to legal recruiters, one out, too early. First of all, you should never contact a legal recruiter like myself, like a private legal recruiter meaning of, that's what, I'm an illegal placement firm, but but in terms of legal recruiters inside of [00:36:00] law firms English.
[00:36:00]Oh, I see. Once a request tenders, consecration went South with a recruiter called a virtual relationship. It, it really there's you don't really need to have a relationship, cultivate a relationship with a recruiter. I w I don't know. You certainly can. And I would but most recruiters, the problem is it's the, it's a, it's an unusual business in a lot of respects, but that most recruiters are But it's, not myself, but a lot of them are they're like salespeople, so they're I don't know if real estate is a good way to moving between transactions and doing things and yeah.
[00:36:31]And so they're happy to talk to people and so forth, but they tend not to, most of them, I'm not saying myself, but a lot of them don't have a lot of time because there are just working on that kind of stuff of this stuff. I don't know that a law student needs a relationship with a recruiter.
[00:36:44] Now, if recruiters, like I have relatives that are attorneys and and I speak to people that are thinking about going to law school and stuff all the time. Then it's useless to ask them questions because they can actually help you from making a lot of career mistakes, because what they see is they see, from the [00:37:00] inside what people do and the mistakes they make.
[00:37:02]Asking recruiters questions is very smart. I I'll tell you a funny story when I was in College for whatever reason I don't remember what the reason was, but I chose where I wanted to go to law school. When I was like a one-off, because someone that I knew had gone, that I looked up to went to law school.
[00:37:19]So I literally started calling the admissions office of the law school and asking them questions about things I should do and classes I should take and everything. And they couldn't believe it. They'd never seen anything like it. And but that actually was a smart thing to do. Cause then I got into that law school and at the time I think they had I don't know, five or 6% acceptance rate from out of state or I don't know, but so I was lucky and that helped me because I got to know people.
[00:37:39] So if you ask recruiters questions and call them and ask them, or talk to them about things you want to do with your career. That would be how I would use my time. I don't think most recruiters are going to want to meet with a law student stuff, but if they do talk to you, that would probably be a good way of doing things.
[00:37:53] And just any type of information you can get and recruiters do they see, they knew who's Mark one. Who's not. So everybody [00:38:00] out there, it's just many times employing the wrong tactics, making the wrong decisions. And if they had advice about what to do, they would be much better off. So that's how I'd recommend using recruiters.
[00:38:09] I don't know, recruiters aren't necessary for you to have a connection with, to get a job. Really, as a young attorney, as a, like a one hour, two hour, three, I'll even they it depends on the recruiter use but. But th the best ones can actually position you as a good candidate, like a attorney would position a client and that's really what they do, and they know what can work.
[00:38:30] And so there's a lot of good things about recruiters, just also a lot of bad things about bad recruiters, but in general I would recommend asking them questions and and then learning from the recruiters that you are interested in while you're young and reading what they write and and that sort of thing until you get out of school and so forth.
[00:38:46] But yeah, you don't need a relationship to recruiter right now. And then a lot of people do have long-term relationships with recruiters when they get out, but ideally you'll join a firm or an employer and you'll be, you'll stay there for your whole career and we'll never need a recruiter, [00:39:00] so that's really an the kind of the ideal that people can follow.
[00:39:04] I'm a life science patent attorney with 20 years of experience and includes managing global patent portfolios for two multinationals. Wow. Soup to nuts. In-house counsel at a small pharma company where I drafted a foundational patent applications about dice strategy, who is $250 million by typical bad situation get introduced, but no offers.
[00:39:20] I'm 59.
[00:39:21]Okay so I don't know what you're doing wrong. I would read about interviewing and so forth. 59 is obviously not too old. You're coming from in-house are you should you should have plenty of experience that could be transitioned to mold too.
[00:39:36]A law firm actually. No. Okay. So here's, what's going on? I think so so law firms are looking, and this is actually a good question that this person asks. This is actually very interesting. So this person, like so most in, in most law firms or in companies are looking for either generals or soldiers, And and I've written an article of the week. [00:40:00]
[00:40:00]Actually not this week, it's coming out next week. It's about the ability to manage attorneys. And I hope everyone reads it. It's not this week, but it's next week. But it's about what types of attorneys are manageable and not what types of attorneys are not manageable. But most of most law firms are looking for generals or soldiers.
[00:40:15] And so a general is someone who gives orders.
[00:40:19]Comes up with strategy,
[00:40:21]strategy, supervisors, that sort of thing.
[00:40:26]And then and then soldier follows orders.
[00:40:29]It does work that sort of thing.
[00:40:31]So if you think about, if you were running a. Let's just put it this way. So if you were running a just a business mowing lawns and you would have, you would tell people to do certain tasks. You'd say you do the edging, you did the mowing. I need you to gas up the trucks and all this kind of thing.
[00:40:49] And then you would have all your workers and you'd say, I need you to mow the backyard. I need you to go get the weed Wacker and do this. I need you to do this. And if all your soldiers were saying, why would I do that? I've formerly supervised a [00:41:00] crew of, eight. Eight trucks doing lawn mowing and and I've I'd do this and I do that.
[00:41:05] And we supervised, so that's the problem when soldiers start trying to be generals, and if a general becomes a soldier, then everyone's just out there. So this person is a life science penetrating, the things that this person is saying. So if you look at this and I'm just showing you and I'm not trying to be rude to anyone here, but this person's saying the managed path for multinationals.
[00:41:23]Soup to nuts in house counsel they developed an IP strategy and raised two 50 million. So this person has a certain type of skill. And and really the only thing they say, one, two, three things here. And then they say this four thing which is more, are related to being a, I'm going to put green.
[00:41:41] More related to being a soldier. So what's happening with you, is that right? You're very proud of all of your supervisory work and so forth and which is which you rightly should be. There's nothing wrong with that. But at the same time what's happening is you may be interviewing for jobs.
[00:41:57] And they may just want someone who can do [00:42:00] patent work. And so if you've done all this stuff, they're going to think he's not going to be happier. She's not going to be happy doing that. They're going to think that maybe you can't be managed because you're used to managing other people.
[00:42:09] They're going to think that you're going to want to go in house and work for a larger patent company or someplace. You're going to get more experience if it's just a job. And they're going to think if it's just drafting patents, that you're not going to want the job. So yeah. Anybody who's portraying themselves to do a certain type of job needs to be able to portray themselves for the role they're interviewing for.
[00:42:26] So if you're interviewing for a biotech company, that's a new biotech company. You may be too old, 59 may be too old. If it's an up and coming new biotech company that needs someone to lead them, or it may not be, I don't know, but it depends on the biotech company, but you need to be able to you need to be able to, come across as Caesar, either a soldier or a general.
[00:42:46] My sense is that you're probably coming across as too much of a general for jobs that are looking for soldiers, because I can tell you a couple things that the patent attorneys are in demand for the most part. But and then you should be able to find some sort of job where you're [00:43:00] drafting at least drafting patents, which would be a soldier job.
[00:43:03] And, but the only other thing I would say, she says, you're a life science patent attorney. So that's actually not good and I'm not, I hate to I don't want to bore everyone on this call with too much information about what this person is doing, but life sciences patent work typically takes place in Boston.
[00:43:20]And San Diego. And then lesser extent, Palo Alto and those are the main markets. And so the problem is there's not a, most of the most patent work is Mo most patent work is is related to hard AP which is electrical and all that sort of thing.
[00:43:34]Software. So that's the problem. So there's very few life sciences jobs. So that's the issue that you're having. There's just not as much information out there. Unless you're working neat, unless you're concentrating on these markets, how you can also maybe throw an orange County.
[00:43:50]It's not going to be easy for you. Anytime I work with a patent attorney though if you can come across and you're interested in working in a law firm, No, you should be able to get a job. There's [00:44:00] thousands of small patent firms all over the country that do life sciences, patent work. There's also thousands of small companies.
[00:44:07] So you just need to target those people. And you don't necessarily want to be applying to jobs. You should apply to places that have openings or not have had openings in the past, or are just do that kind of work. And that would be how you'd want to do it, but you need to work. A lot hard at your jobs or someone will definitely hire you.
[00:44:23]You can get hired as a general in a small eye pharma company, which should be all I would target. I would find every small pharma company in the country because that's going to take care of your life sciences. And I would apply to every single one of them. And that I could find that's what I would do.
[00:44:39] And regardless of whether they have an opening, because your probably your experience is probably in-house. If you wanna work in a law firm, I would apply to every single lifestyle, every single life law firm with life science, patent attorneys I could, and the country starting mainly with smaller ones.
[00:44:55]I'm trying to help because you have not unemployed for three years and you definitely can get a job, but those are what you [00:45:00] need to do. And if you do that, you shouldn't have a problem in terms of when you interview you need to be very careful about coming across as a general because you're used to being the expert and and so forth.
[00:45:10]You need to be come across as a soldier who will follow orders and get things done and be on-call and eager to work. I hope that helps and but that's okay. Let's see. Here I answer live. The next question is what area of law do you see the most promising over the next five to 10 years?
[00:45:29] So a couple things. So attorneys any, the first thing is it doesn't matter what branch of law you practice for the most part there's certain branches of law that. That are good. And there's certain ones that are bad. But I was just looking at just see here real quickly practice areas today.
[00:45:46] Give me one second here. We just sit here. In terms of practice areas so many times when you're looking to practice areas and trying to decide which ones are the best, and these are just the practice here. This is the kind of stuff I do all day, by the way. And that you're trying to work [00:46:00] on there's certain practice areas that are better than others.
[00:46:02]You're generally. Going to be the most employable when you're in niche practice areas for the most part and niche is always better than a major practice area. So for example, I'm in litigation right now. Let me just say alcohol and beverage law. Probably not a great practice here.
[00:46:17] It's just, it's too niche and there's just not a lot of people, not a lot of people doing it. It's not a hard, it's not an easy place to get a job. And a trust is a difficult practice here because it's too large of a practice here. I A to it's just it's not a great practice here, but in terms of.
[00:46:31]I don't want to get into it. I'm going to tell you I'd be here all day. If I was explaining this stuff to you, construction is a great practice area. I think that's one of the strongest ones. There's a huge demand for construction attorneys. And I've always construction trainees. Have Bob has done very well securities.
[00:46:45]Corporate is generally always pretty good. Corporate generalists can also go and house a corporate is always a good position. Security is in capital markets can go up and down depending on the stock market and be difficult. Private equity and venture capital are usually always pretty good.
[00:46:59] M and a is [00:47:00] always good. So most of the forms of corporate work are good. Finance is also very project finance is a tough one just because it's tough when you get more senior. Let's see, I'm just trying to find the best ones for you guys. Any form of employment law is also is always good.
[00:47:13] So those practice areas are good. Family law is a great practice area right now. It's great. All over. Let's see here healthcare. It's usually always very good. Anybody that does healthcare is always doing well, immigrations and excellent practice area. Insurance defense is always good. Insurance coverage is usually pretty good.
[00:47:31] Intellectual property litigation is not good. Let me just see here. Licensing not good. And I could explain all the reasons to you, but you're asking me which ones I believe arbitration never good very difficult trademark. Very difficult. So when you get into litigation, a lot of people want to do litigation.
[00:47:46] And honestly the most active practice areas and litigation are the hardest jobs to get, tend to be in general commercial litigation. The ones that I've seen are the easiest in a good experience. I It depends on you, but I work with every type [00:48:00] of attorneys. So I'm not just working with people from vault 20 firms and stuff.
[00:48:03] The people that get the most interviews as litigators in New York city. Our medical malpractice attorneys labor and employment attorneys get a lot of interviews workers' compensation attorneys get a lot of interviews. Things like when you start getting into things that everyone, land use and zoning gets a lot of interviews.
[00:48:17]Let's say product liability gets a lot of interviews. Let's see. Personal injury gets a lot of integrators trust in the States gets a lot of interviews. So those are some of the ones that I think are better. Any type of real estate litigation now. But those are some of the practice areas.
[00:48:30] So I the practice areas that I see getting, doing the best, and if I was an attorney, it depends on, if you're a let me just see here. I'm just looking for litigation rules. Give me one second. Depends really, if you're a what type of attorney you want to be. If you.
[00:48:44] Want to be a if you have a choice between consumer facing types of law, and then you have a choice of corporate facing types of law. So I personally think that the ones that are going to do the best over the next several years are going to be consumer facing. And [00:49:00] that's not something typically that attorneys go into most attorneys want to go into, working for a large firms and that sort of thing.
[00:49:07] I'm just trying to look you yeah, I'm just trying to look if I, I did a thing here, a presentation, a consumer versus a I have it open here, but but there's a difference between consumer facing law and there's a difference between law. That's more faced. Let me just sit here