Lawyers who think strategically about their career path have been shown to achieve a better career trajectory than those taking a laissez-faire approach. In making a well-planned career move, much can be achieved in terms of higher quality work, higher remuneration and a clearer pathway to partnership.
Executives in large organizations are often trained and coached about career management skills from an early stage and taught about the business they work for. In law firms, it is not until a couple of years from partnership (if you are on the right track) that such management training begins. As consultants, we see the difference taking a strategic approach to your career can make to the quality of your work, interest in your work and of course remuneration and partnership prospects. Too often we deal with senior lawyers who have sat and waited for opportunities to arise and found that they never actually did.
The key triggers we see for a strategic move are as follows:
Change at supervising partner level:The partner may have left, may be planning to leave or may be relocating to another office.
Financial:Why work for less money in one firm when another pays 20% more for the same work?
Work levels:Too much work may create excessive hours; too little work may cause boredom and fear of financial/job instability.
Quality of work:Where the kind of work is no longer sufficiently stimulating or there is a movement towards doing less enjoyable work.
Difficult Partner/Colleague:It is not necessary to work in a negative environment while there are many positive ones to choose from.
Promotional Prospects:In top heavy practice groups we routinely speak with lawyers who are keen to know of opportunities offering a clearer path. They do exist, but don’t leave your run too late. We advise lawyers concerned about their group’s gearing to speak with us early – especially in the first two years of senior associateship because it is easier to establish yourself in a new firm at that level and to achieve the career impetus you are seeking.
If you see your own situation above and wish to speak with a consultant for advice on how to handle your career strategically please call us on (02) 9266 2900 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
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