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Summary: Lawyers need to know the 3 most common failures that can result in them losing their jobs.
No matter if it is your first or fifth job as a lawyer, if you’ve been fired it can be heartbreaking.
Nonetheless, it happens, and sometimes for a plethora of reasons, some common while others aren’t so common.
Continue reading this article to find out what the most common reasons are for an attorney’s termination from their law firm.
Every business has its nuances. In medicine doctors are required to have a sense of care that has been translated into “bedside manner.” If a doctor does not have this type of characteristic to their personality, there’s a very strong chance they may one day realize they’ve lost all their patients.
Building contractors have their own array of nuances which involve open communications with their clients as well as attention to detail when it comes to the construction of a house or a building.
While the nuances of a lawyer, particularly a lawyer hired on by a BigLaw firm, might be much different from any other profession, those nuances are still very present in the legal profession, and if not properly followed, can have a profound effect on an attorney’s career.
The thing is those nuances, whether as a doctor, contractor, or lawyer speak to the person’s character and their “care” for the job. With lawyers, the nuances are almost always law firm-related, which in the end can determine whether that lawyer continues on with the firm or is fired from the firm.
To amplify things, the nuances found in a law firm are really quite easy to work with. Or, if not, quite easy to learn from and gain (or even regain) should you find yourself terminated.
So what are those nuances that can turn into common career-ending fails for lawyers? The three most prominent are as follows.
Failure to do proper due diligence with the law firm.
A lawyer’s failure at proper due diligence with the law firm where he or she works can occur in many ways. But more often than not, this failure transpires when an attorney doesn’t fit within the law firm’s culture.
Once that happens, it is more than likely that the same attorney will not see eye-to-eye with the clients until finally a large enough rift opens up in which the relationship with the attorney and the law firm is beyond repair.
Attorneys in situations such as this can expect to be fired very quickly.
Failure to connect with the partners of the law firm.
The most important figures within a law firm are the partners. They control much of the money and influence that the law firm has. They bring in high-dollar clients, have large amounts of billable hours, and in general, keep the law firm running with, of course, the help of the law firm’s associates.
It is imperative that new attorneys through to long-term associates align themselves with their firm’s partners simply because those partners can protect the associates from being fired or disciplined in some other way.
If an attorney fails to connect with a partner, he or she is left defenseless against their own termination. They have no one to vouch for or protect them. They are exposed and with that should expect to lose their jobs.
Taking your attorney job for granted.
It can be easy for an attorney to take their job for granted. So easy, that an attorney in fact may be taking their job for granted before they even realize they are doing so.
The allure, the prestige, the high-dollar salary all play a part in attorneys growing lazy and losing their aggression.
No longer are they bringing in new clients or building up their billable hours. Soon, they are seen as dead weight to a law firm, particularly when business is slow. Needless to say, lawyers who take their job for granted will soon be dismissed.
You should know that if your legal career suffers from any of these3 common attorney related failures that your job will probably be on the line before you even realize it.
Do yourself a favor and become more involved with your law firm. Become more of what keeps the law firm functioning instead of bogging it down.
And even if you’re not bogging the firm down but you instead are bringing in clients and maintaining a good amount of billable hours, make sure the partners know about this. Fit into their culture by working hard. If you do this the final pay off most likely won’t be you losing your job, but potentially a possible promotion – maybe even to partner.
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