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The Life and Career of Nader Anise, The Marketing Lawyer
by Mary Waldron
"During law school, even before law school, I would never work for anyone. I knew going in that I would always have to find my own way," he said.
Immediately after passing the bar exam, Anise jumped right into the world of law by opening his own practice, Anise & Anise, with his wife.
"I was green. More green than Kermit," he said of his early years in law.
Anise had a trying time as he developed his practice. "I can tell you some great stories about barely surviving and basically living on mac and cheese," he said. Though he regrets not clerking or working in the industry while he was a student, Anise was still able to prevail as a struggling first-year attorney.
Reverting back to his experience in business and marketing, Anise decided to combine his two interests, law and business, to find his true "passion."
"Do what you enjoy," he said. "There has to be some sort of fulfillment if you want it to last for the long haul."
In his quest to revamp his career, Anise used his keen marketing eye to notice a huge need in the legal industry. Solo practitioners and small firm attorneys, by default, are usually their own marketing teams—and many of them do not realize that.
Anise restarted his career as a marketing consultant for attorneys all over the world. He primarily teaches "lawyerpreneurs," as he calls them, or sole practitioners and attorneys who are with small firms, how to market their businesses so clients will come flocking.
Anise also counsels attorneys on finding niche practice areas as well as sub-niches.
"Unless you have some identifiable area of law that you do, and do it well, and, in fact, find a way to be the king of the mountain in that area of law, it's going to be very difficult for you to have a dominating presence. Why? Because no one knows what you do," he said.
In addition to consulting more than 20,000 attorneys worldwide, Anise teaches at his alma mater, Nova Southeastern University. As a professor of both marketing and law, Anise has begun to see the important impact that marketing classes could have on law students. Most law schools have not implemented such classes and are not looking to add any, either, according to Anise.
"They are resisting big time. There are some schools that are starting to integrate some classes like law firm management, but nothing that teaches law students how to be marketable," he said.
"If you want to excel in any type of field, you have to have a mentor," said Anise. "You have to have someone who will take you to the mine, who will take you by the hand and say, 'Here is where the gold is.'"
After his journey through law and marketing, Anise advises all lawyers and law students to really be "goal specific." Understanding why you are in law and what you hope to accomplish is crucial for any attorney.
"You have to be clear about what you want to achieve and stick to it," he said.
More importantly, though he knows it sounds cliché, Anise advises to never give up.
"You do what it takes. You work as hard as it takes. You labor. If it means sacrificing or losing some friends along the way, never give up on what you're trying to accomplish," he said.
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What about personal questions concerning marital status, number of children, health? Try to figure out the underlying concern. For example, the question What are your child-care arrangements? might address the availability to travel or work weekends. Answer the real question: 'I will do whatever it takes to get the job done.' Magic words: 'You can count on me.'