• Legal Practice

    What If I Don’t Like My Intern?

    Ok, so first I figure this was a good time to post this when I have NO interns assigned to me so that no one can think this is me throwing shade. I’ve manage a lot of interns since I began practicing–a lot. And if you ask any attorney that works with students frequently, they’ll tell you some interns they LOVED and some…were their interns lol. So I know that as new attorneys, working with students, we end up working with a medley of people and some we like, some we don’t. That’s normal–everyone isn’t for everybody, you know? But it can be difficult when we have a duty to…

  • Legal Practice

    Odd Man Out: Acclimating to Professional Norms

    I don’t remember where I saw this (on twitter) but a recent law school grad mentioned how awkward she felt going to dinner with people who have money and think nothing of ordering apps. She felt awkward because she grew up with barely having enough to make ends meet, let alone extras like appetizers. It’s such a simple story, but it reminded me how out of place so many things can make us feel when we first join the professional world. This isn’t exclusive to the legal field, but for those of us that grew up with little financial means or exposure to “professionals” it can feel jarring and out…

  • Issues,  Legal Practice

    Is Your Work Glamourous?

    A recent article from Harvard Business Review discussed how women and people of color (so especially women of color) are often assigned tasks that while necessary to keep a business running are not assignments that help propel your career. We are often assigned to doing “Office House Work” where white men are more often assigned “Glamour Work.” Glamour work gets you noticed and can be used to show growth and your success and experience with glamour work can be used to push for a promotion or more plummy assignments. I highly encourage people to read the HRB article especially because it discusses what managers and companies should do to take…

  • Legal Practice

    Take Control: Why Ambition is Necessary for your Legal Career

    It is so common when you get your first job to feel super grateful that someone took a chance on you. Gratitude is good! But there is a risk when we are so happy to have a job, to have our license, to be a real life attorney (!!!) that we kind of just go with the flow. Suddenly, a few years pass by and you realized you haven’t structured your career in a way that best benefits you. The best way to avoid this is to take control of your career by being ambitious. It may feel like we should shy away from seeming determined or focused on a…

  • Legal Practice

    Dos and Don’ts for a New Attorney

    You have a new job! Yay! I remember how exciting it is to start a new job (and what a relief it is to not have to keep job-searching!). If this is your first job as an attorney, it’s especially exciting because this is the place where you will learn what type of attorney you will become—and I don’t just mean what practice area you’ll focus on, but rather this where you’ll sharpen skills you don’t even know you have. And even more exciting, as a baby shark, this is where you’ll gain a sense of what type of cases/facts/and clients get you smelling blood in the water (gross). I…

  • Issues,  Legal Practice

    Play to Win: Using Respectability Politics as a Tool

    I think one of the biggest things I struggle with here is how much I seem to push assimilation and accepting business norms. I dislike that I do it because when we abide by certain business norms set by those in power, we may end up believing (or portraying to others) that those norms are better than our own cultural standards. Or worse, we fall into a trap of believing that we’ll be accepted by those in power.  I try to find a balance of discussing how most norms and ideals are created and enforced to advance those in power while at the same time, I take up a lot…

  • Legal Practice

    Working Goals

    Not to add more things on your plate, but if you’re on the resolution bus then I strongly encourage adding goals for work on your to-do list. When you start practicing, it is so easy to get into a day-to-day routine. Actually, that’s normal and what most people want! But the risk in this is that there is nothing that breaks up this monotony and suddenly you find yourself three or four years in with only minimal increase in skills or progress on your career goals. It bears repeating the career growth requires active participation, so why not take the opportunity of a new slate to figure out what you…

  • Legal Practice

    Work is Work: Social Gatherings

    I feel like a viejita lecturing about behavior at work, but I’m going to do it anyway. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ First, a story: I know someone (nameless and not me!) that got black out drunk at a company event; got sick the next day at work; and it took about two years (when the next new coworker got too drunk) before their coworkers (and bosses) stopped teasing them about it.  Mortifying, no? So because the holiday season is here, it just seems like the appropriate time to remind ourselves to not be fooled by the glittery warmth that is the holiday season into thinking parties we attend during company time or with company…

  • Legal Practice

    Where My Ladies At? Being Excluded from Networking Events

    One of my fave work related blogs, ask a manager, recently had a post about a work situation that many of us may face. The men, often bosses, networking together in a way that excludes women. This happens a lot, especially in our field. The reason is rarely malicious, but rather some events are “standard” and the standards are still set by men. Womp womp. So in this example, a bunch of dudes wanted to go to an NFL game and most of the women weren’t into football so they ended up excluding women from this event because they assumed they wouldn’t want to attend. If you watch Insecure than…

  • Legal Practice

    Networking Quick Fixes

    I basically have a general store in my office (maybe side effects from playing Oregon Trail?). But really if you need something–aspirin, a protein bar, makeup wipes, whatever–I likely have it. I just like being prepared. And this preparation has been a lifesaver for me when I’ve had “surprise” situations that required that I look better than normal. Let me clarify, I aim to always look professional at work, but it’s legal aid. We’re tres lax when it comes to a dress code. I love it, but that also means that if I just pop up to a networking event or need to run to court, I may not always…