How Long Will My Law Firm Search Take?

While in-house searches are notorious for taking their own sweet time, law firm searches, in comparison, move at lightning speed. Two rounds and you’re done, right? Not always. If you are looking to lateral as an associate, your search could be completed from start to finish in a matter of weeks. However, if you are a Counsel or Partner, expect your search to take many weeks or months. This time is necessary in considering a major career decision – take it! Luckily, you don’t have to figure it all out on your own.

I recently worked with a Partner who had her first lunch with a top-tier law firm in September 2016. Seven months later, after many in-person meetings and conference calls, she received an offer. A Counsel I just placed first interviewed with his new firm in November 2016 and was given an offer in April 2017. In my experience, neither of these situations is unusual. In both instances, my candidates needed patience and stamina. I was happy to advise them throughout their long searches.

Moving law firms when you are a Counsel or Partner takes time for a number of reasons. Candidates will interview with many or all Partners in the related law firm department. You will also need to be vetted by members of the firm’s senior management committee. If you are being considered by a large firm, you might also travel to meet decision makers in offices around the US or the world. All of this happens while you (most likely) have a full time job to handle. It’s not easy to juggle so many demands on your time. However, it is also to your benefit to spend as much time as possible with a firm you are considering joining. You should know who your future Partners are and what they will be like to work with. A good recruiter will help manage the interview process so that it runs as smoothly as possible and will take into account the demands of your current position.

If you have come to the conclusion that it is time for you to change law firms, prepare yourself for the time commitment you will be making. Take a deep breath and acknowledge that while moving at a senior level won’t likely happen quickly, if you are willing to invest the time, hopefully you will have the opportunity to join a firm that enables you to truly advance your legal career. If you would like to talk to me about how I might be able to help with your search, please call me at 212-328-6183.

So You Want To Go In-House…

In my years of legal recruiting, the number one question I’ve heard from law firm associates is, “How can I find an in-house job?”

I wish there were an easy answer. Even associates at top firms can find it challenging to land a fantastic in-house opportunity. However, I can share a few general resume tips based on feedback from our corporate clients that will help you write your best resume and hopefully get that first interview.

Resume Dos:

  • A straightforward, easy to read and well-organized one- or two-page resume
  • Descriptions that emphasize your experience most relevant to the opportunity at hand
  • A deal sheet that lists the projects you took the greatest responsibility on, are the highest profile and broadly representative of your practice

Resume Don’ts:

  • Fancy fonts
  • Heavy, cream-colored resume paper
  • 5-page deal sheets
  • Text so dense that only a law school professor would bother reading it

And here’s another tip: I am currently working on a number of excellent in-house opportunities.

If you are considering making a move and one of these jobs sounds like a good fit for you and your experience, I’d love to hear from you!

Please send me an email at jdemasi@cmwsearch.com or send me an InMail via LinkedIn, so we can set up a time to talk.

Headhunter and Matchmaker

Recruiting is a relationship business. In my experience, the best headhunters are like great matchmakers because they personally know the individuals involved and understand what will make a happy union.

Here are a few relationship phrases that I use frequently with candidates and clients alike:

  1. Love at First Sight. That karmic connection when candidate and client have a meeting of the minds. While this may not lead to a permanent match, when the skill set and personalities just fit, it is a great place to start.
  2. You Only Need One Groom/Bride.  There are advantages to having more than one finalist for a job or in landing multiple offers, but in the end, you only need one great match.
  3. Be Yourself. As a candidate you should put your best foot forward in an interview, but you also need to be genuine. Don’t pretend to be a formal, buttoned-up personality if you aren’t. Long-term career happiness comes from having a job where you can be successful by being yourself.

Don’t forget the personal, relationship aspect to your job search or hiring. I hope that these three points will help guide your search. If you would like to talk to me about how to move forward in your legal career or if you are in the market for a great lawyer, please send me an email at jdemasi@cmwsearch.com or send me an InMail via LinkedIn, so we can set up a time to talk. Happy Valentine’s Day!

After-Bonus Resolutions

The holidays are over. The champagne has been drunk. Most law firms have paid out their year-end bonuses. Now what? Whether you typically are a New Year’s Resolution maker or not, I’d like to suggest that you make one work-related, shall we call it, After-Bonus Resolution, for 2017.

Your resolution can be made whether you are happy or unhappy in your current job. Regardless, following through on an After-Bonus Resolution can move you closer to your long-term professional goals.

Here are a few After Bonus Resolutions:

  1. Improve your LinkedIn profile.  It is one of the first places a potential employer looks to learn more about you.
  2. Revise your resume and deal sheet.  Update these documents so that they are ready to go when a great opportunity comes up.
  3. Attend a networking event.  Whether it’s through the Bar Association, your college or law school, it’s always a good idea to expand your contacts.
  4. Call a recruiter.  Introduce yourself and ask them to keep you in mind for future opportunities. You never know when your dream job will open up!

I hope these suggestions have inspired you to make an After Bonus Resolution. Proactively taking even simple steps makes us feel more in control of our work life. If you would like to talk to me about how to move forward in your legal career, please send me an email at jdemasi@cmwsearch.com or send me an InMail via LinkedIn, so we can set up a time to talk.

Happy New Year and good luck with your After-Bonus Resolutions!

© 2017 Corrao Miller Wiesenthal Legal Search Consultants, Inc.