Posted Today on – What to Consider When Considering an In-House Counsel Position

I’m honored to have been asked by Above the Law to provide a guest article for ATL’s Career Center.  Today, they published Part I of the article “What to Consider When Considering an In-House Counsel Position”.  The article explores just what it takes to be an in-house attorney, the expectations and demands of the role and the potential career paths.  While these in-house positions are often coveted and hard to get, we focus on the critical analysis (of one’s personal skills and the job’s duties) it takes to ensure that this role could be the answer to an attorney’s job hunting prayers.

Please give it a read, and add your thoughts on or email me directly.  Thanks so much.

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Above the Law is looking for your feedback

Above the Law, the largest site for legal news with which I’m sure many of you are likely familiar, just released a survey for “lapsed lawyers” and they asked me to send this out to everyone here in the Leave Law Behind community.  Above the Law wants to hear from those of us who have left the legal profession and to listen to our personal stories (I just filled mine out).

You can read more about the survey here or go directly to the survey here.  It’s a short survey and shouldn’t take that much time to complete.  And if you’re still practicing and hoping to leave the law in the future, I encourage you to take a peek at the questions and think about how you would answer them if you had already left the law.  It can be a nice exercise to get you motivated to take your next baby step.

And if any ideas, thoughts or other motivations arise as you take the survey, email me, I’d love to hear them.

Contact me if you’re interested in exploring a one-to-one leave law behind coaching course. Continue Reading

Why the job you have now (and don’t like) is just what you need in order to find a better job (that you love)

I was recently speaking with a member of the Leave Law Behind community, and we were fleshing out a nice action plan for her to use in order to leave her job by the end of 2013.  It all is falling into place:

  • She has the deep, burning, sincere desire to leave law altogether and no longer practice
  • She has a fairly good handle on her financial situation and cash flow needs and is reducing the anxiety she feels about  money, the overwhelming need for security and being tied to a job mainly for the paycheck
  • She has little-to-no hang-ups about the time and financial investment she put into law school and is ready to move on
  • She has begun to work on fleshing out her unique genius to better understand her strengths, skills and passions (and how best to critically match these skills to potential new jobs, ventures and start-ups)
  • She understands that she needs to “get out there” and begin networking, meeting people, creating opportunities and hitting the pavement  – she has a few leads already and now is building up the courage to reach out to them
  • She has a steady job at a mid-sized firm that continues to pay her bills

So what’s wrong? 

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Finding your Unique Genius . . . while easing up on yourself

[EDITOR’S NOTE:  The following is a guest post by a current criminal defense attorney, and frequent guest blogger on Leave Law Behind, as he details his ongoing experience in identifying those skills and strengths at which he excels and enjoys, what we call one’s Unique Genius.]

Over the course of time that I’ve contemplated leaving law practice—four years or so—I’ve read a lot about making the transition.  Invariably, commentators tell you that the first step is self-assessment.  This sure seems like a logical starting point.  How better to avoid ending up in another unfulfilling, if not loathsome, job than to take the time to unearth your true strengths and interests?  Indeed, many of us dissatisfied lawyers regret that we didn’t undertake this introspection before diving head-first into law school.  Had we done so, the thinking goes, we wouldn’t now be in this professional dystopia.

In addition, for my money, I think unsatisfied lawyers need to cut themselves a little slack.  Sure, most of us would have benefited from a little more reflection.  But, that’s only half the equation.  The other half is seldom acknowledged in my experience: expectations of the legal profession. 

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Why I stopped writing for a few weeks

I ran into a friend (and Leave Law Behind reader last week), and he asked me why I had taken him off of this email list.  I said I had done no such thing, and that I just hadn’t sent out a blog post in a while.

It is always nice to hear about someone looking forward to your emails, and his comment got me thinking as to why I had taken this break from writing and emailing a post over the past few weeks.  After some reflection, two reasons came up.

I have fortunately had a lot of good work – a new client, some great projects, some travel.  My attention has been focused on this new business.

And, to be honest, I also did not feel that I was producing good blog content.  I didn’t really like what I was writing.  I felt like the draft posts were forced and just not that helpful.  I felt stumped, and a bit unmoored.  So I stopped for a while.  I closed the Word doc in which I compile these drafts, made a note to come back in a week or two, and I focused on other things.

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