5 Top Tips to Making Partner in a Law Firm
Updated: Jan 2
Is it your ambition to get to partner in a law firm?
Find the RIGHT law firm for you. Don't invest your time and energy in a law firm that you don't want to be partner in. How do you know? * Check out the culture in the workplace. Is this one that will support you? * Are the partners at your firm ones that you are happy to work with in a business capacity? Can you work with them? * Is your law firm likely to stick around? Is it well run financially? If not, make sure you find a firm that you are comfortable with because becoming partner is a huge investment, financially as well as professionally, and your reputation is at stake.
Get a good support system. * Can you rely on your colleagues and boss? Will they have your back when the chips are down? Will they champion you for partner? Give you work that will help you reach your goal? * Do you have a mentor or mentors you can count on or turn to? Will they recommend you for promotions and projects? * Is the firm's culture an understanding one?
Open lines of communication * Communicate that you are ambitious and are striving for partnership. In this way, people will have you in mind when they are thinking of projects or cases that could help you along the way. * Don't be shy or coy about it. No one champions your own career as well as you do. If you believe you are the best person for the job, say so, do so.
Take on more roles to increase your visibility. * Say NO more than yes to extraneous projects and roles. Lawyering is tough enough as it is. Your focus is on good work. * BUT do say YES to projects that you are interested in and help your visibility in the law firm. * Have roles in outside organizations as well as internally. Be open about the fact that you are serving and supporting an external organization that is has visibility in the legal world.
Networking is a must * Networking to build your client list and keep your clients is a must. Find out what events are being put on by your firm and attend those. Make sure you ask your current clients out for coffee. Clients are looking for services over and above what is stated in your contract in order to keep coming back to you. * Don't forget to networking internally too. Knowing your colleagues in the other departments will encourage cross-referrals and you have ally in the firm you can count on. Make sure you get to network with bosses too and be seen to be getting on with them.
Here are my 5 top tips to making partner in a law firm. As a woman, you have to be seen as a team player in addition to doing good work. And that isn't easy if it is a room full of men.
But if being a partner is what you are striving for despite the gender bias, then be clear to find your tribe and build your professional capital. It is possible!
Have a great day!