Tips for New Lawyers and Reminders for Old Ones

By Robert A. Creo, Editor

The following is an excerpt from Tej Prakash, Survival Tips for a Newly Minted Attorney, Law Technology Today (Dec 8, 2016).

Ask Questions
You will be asked to do things that you haven’t done before, whether doing research on a discrete (and often esoteric) issue, reviewing contracts for key provisions or drafting simple agreements. …The senior attorneys or partners…know that you are new, inexperienced and may have not have done this before.

Don’t Be a Know It All
[S]ince you are new and probably lack the knowledge base, don’t pretend to know the answer. On the off chance that a client asks you a question about something, it is totally fine to say, “Let me discuss with [insert partner’s name] and get to you” rather than making up an answer off the cuff.

Be Organized
It is really important for you to be organized as more senior attorneys will expect you to pull documents when asked.

Punctuality & Responsiveness
Punctuality is very important and if you think you will be late, email others on your team attending the meeting and let them know. Similarly, being responsive is equally important. A lack of punctuality or responsiveness, often implies a level of disinterest (whether true or not), which you want to avoid.

Be Proactive
At times, you can be slow at work. That’s just the reality of working at a firm. However, when you are slow, it is an opportunity to add value in some other way.

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