If you are a well-seasoned lawyer with years of experience facing the end or near-end of your career, consider what follows.
After years of putting blood, sweat and tears in (so-to-speak), it would be a shame not to fully capitalize on your highly valuable knowledge and experience.
Solo? Don’t just close the doors and walk away. Consider bringing on some juniors and grooming them to take the reins when you are ready to head off to the next phase of your life. There may also be opportunities through strategic succession planning to grow your firm and position it to become more valuable to an outside buyer. Either way, it would be a shame not to capitalize on your way out.
Larger firm partner? Don’t want to retire? Try a ‘Reboot.’ If you are at a larger firm and faced with a mandatory partner retirement policy, consider negotiating an ‘of-counsel’ arrangement. While you may be bought out of the partnership, there are still ways you can continue to be of value to the firm, and draw a healthy salary, even if your time is paired back. There may also be opportunities to do less of the legal work and take on more of an official mentoring role, potentially even management.
Before you just give up and ride off into the sunset, consider your options. You have some.
Transitioning to a new firm can be daunting, especially when you’ve been where you are for a long time. Things are comfortable. You know your way around. You know the people, the culture, the expectations.
Making a move means new people, new culture, new rules! And what about the uncertainty? Is this the right move? Will I fit in? It can be very stressful. Change is hard.
Ask yourself one simple question. ‘What prompted you to consider this move?’ It’s likely your gut telling you it’s time, it’s a better platform to work from, it’s a good move for your career.
Once you’ve made up your mind to make the move, start with a plan. Map out your way forward. Identify your key clients and the approach you will take to bring them with you. Reach out to your new firm, new partners and look for ways to create more cross-serving opportunities. This can be a great move for your clients and the clients of your new firm if you look at it that way.
With the right plan you can walk in the door of your new firm and hit the ground running and never look back!
Although this might be self-serving, I didn’t write it or speak to it. If you’ve ever thought about getting a coach to help you grow and manage your business, I highly recommend you watch this TED Talk. Warning! There are some graphic images. And it gets a little emotional at the end. It’s inspiring, uplifting and real life proof of what coaching can do. Enjoy.
98.7% of my clients are perfectionists at heart. I am a perfectionist at heart. What’s the problem with being a perfectionist? It holds you back from actually getting things done. Nothing will ever be perfect, including perfectionism.
Now, don’t get me wrong. Striving for, and achieving excellence should be our number one goal as professional service providers. And for that matter, as humans. But if you wait until something is perfect to get it out there, you will never get it out there. It’s an impossible dream.
How many times has procrastination come into play because of your perfectionist tendencies? You fear getting started because you don’t know if it will be perfect. So you hold off. Time passes. More time passes and still nothing is done. If some of the top companies of all time waited until they perfected their product or service, they wouldn’t be in business. They wouldn’t have pushed the innovation envelope.
So the next time you are confronted with your perfectionist tendencies, ask yourself, “Is it excellent?” “Is it good enough for now?” And then remember, it can always be improved upon later. Get it out there. One of my favorite things to suggest to my clients is ‘NIKE’. Just do it!
Follow the positive trail is a phrase I’ve coined while working with my clients. It simply means follow the positive people, reactions, results, interactions, energy etc. It has many applications in business. Whether you are looking for another job, working to build your book, looking to build more internal relationships, heck, life in general.
Don’t let the negativity drag you down. Focus and follow what is positive. Here are a few examples.
- You are working to build your book. You send out a number of emails to reconnect. Don’t worry about the people who don’t respond, focus and put your energy towards the people who do, and work to take those relationships to the next level.
- You are starting at a new firm. You are working to build relationships with associates, staff and partners at your new firm. Watch for how people react to you. If they don’t give you the time of day-move on. Focus on the people who respond in a positive way. Invest your time and energy in them.
We are surrounded by negativity all day long. This is one approach (proven) by my clients to help you stay positive, motivated and moving forward towards reaching your goals.
The beginning of a New Year always offers us so much hope. Hope for a new start. Hope for another chance. Hope to improve, learn and grow. Hope for whatever it is that we want more of.
That brings me to my all-time favorite quote. It comes from one of Goethe’s couplets:
“Whatever you can do, or dream you can-begin it-boldness has genius, power and magic in it”