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See reviews for Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz PC from attorneys and other legal professionals below.
5.Current Employee, more than 3 yearsOffice SupportLegal Secretarial Assistant in Baltimore, MDRecommendProsBaker is a great company.ConsYou have to constantly support other people and their workloads when they take off.Advice to ManagementBetter task distribution to make workloads more equitable.
Fix your work environment for the sake of your associates.
The work environment at Baker Donelson is so incredibly appalling. When I read reviews from Baker employees regarding DEI, it was almost like I was reading statements that had been coerced.
The associates at Baker Donelson are given completely unrealistic expectations. Majority of the partners assign cases to the associates expecting them to automatically say they have the availability to add it to their load - and it's almost an unspoken rule that you don't say no when a partner asks you to work a case. Generally, the associates do most of the time-consuming work, so on top of the excessive caseload, each individual case will be a load in and of itself. If you have a family, you should you go into this firm knowing that you will very likely (as an associate, for sure) miss many dinners, some school plays, have to work weekends (which will cut any kind of family time out of your schedule), anything in the evening during the week (church events, little league ball, etc. - that's out).
In addition, there are many partners at Baker Donelson that show very little respect for family life - or a separation between work and home life - and some will even send foul emails with unnecessary language and expect you to continue to show them respect in return. All that matters to some of the partners at Baker is work, even at the expense of family or whatever else might be of importance to you. That said, there *are* several partners who are very respectable and are great to work with. These partners seem to remember what it was like to be an associate, thusly, they choose to treat the associates with respect. They provide leadership and guidance - not belittlement. Although, almost all partners expect work to happen outside working hours, no matter what.
There have been associates at Baker that have started at the firm with high-hopes and ready for their careers to soar; however, due to the environment, some have eventually suffered mental health problems (that weren't there before) and have had to take leaves of absence to seek help. Additionally, some associates - after starting at Baker - have come to struggle with mental health issues, and instead of taking a leave of absence or seeking help, have chosen to push through their suffering for the sake of their career.
Having knowledge of ALL of the above creates a better understanding that diversity, equity and inclusion at Baker Donelson is lacking in its entirety. DEI is not just about inclusion and diversity of race/ethnicity, gender, etc. in the workplace. DEI also means making ALL colleagues feel welcomed, valued, respected and heard, which, in turn, contributes to the company's growth and success. Baker's partners corporate leadership have lacked in this area for quite some time and it has only gotten worse.
The only way the firm is able to keep its associates at the company, in spite of its terrible environment, is through their increasingly-high associate salary along with hefty bonuses. All associates start at a large, six-figure salary. The salary increases at a rapid pace on an annual basis. Associates meeting a certain number of billable hour requirements, receive a five-figure bonus. So, essentially, the firm is bribing its associates to stay and be treated poorly, because no other firms in the area (if in Memphis) can come close to competing with Baker's rates.
Will not disclose.
Help initiate channels to offer guidance or answer questions. Too often there is only silence from attorneys. When staff seeks out assistance, do not stand by silently or criticize.
Good people who hold onto the memory of working for a great firm
There is an unbelievable amount of motion with nothing ever accomplished. No oversight, no feedback, no response until the blame game begins. Staff is forced to wing it and make due but rather than show any appreciation for effort, there is an onslaught of criticism.
Those individuals put in place to advocate for staff are poor leaders, who are really "yes" men. Do not expect any loyalty or honesty from this firm.
Get to know people and reward them for creativity and other criteria besides how much money you made them
Lots of good people work there
Management is hard to understand and there is a mystery few who seem to control everything
I think it depends on what one is willing to tolerate, or what one expects
The many good people who work there
I would of liked to see them slow down when it came to hiring new employees and focus more on working with what they already have.
Everyone is very straightforward and has a no nonsense attitude towards taking care of work and working together which I appreciated.
They hired more than they could take on too quickly which led to some internal problems within the firm. This led to the work environment feeling very constricting and constrained.
You can work here on diverse cases and make your portfolio strong. Learning curve is very steep. I must say that it's a good firm to start your attorney career.
The firm offers many benefits for their employees. I have really enjoyed the benefits they have offered as well as my co-workers. Pay is at par with other firms. Work environment is good and attorneys are really helpful.
I must say that the work is very challenging at times. It can be very fast paced with many down times. The hardest part is utilization of targets and achieving deadlines.