5 Crucial Tips for Future Lawyers
No matter what happens, don’t lose sight of YOU.
Throughout the entire process of Law School, specifically the stress that comes from exams and seemingly endless hours of study, remember why you chose this career path to begin with. Don’t become so rattled by the demands of your professors and coursework that you forget to step back, take a deep breath and reflect on where you are and where you want to go. And when you think you’re too overwhelmed with work and need help, don’t forget about law school tutoring and how it can help you grow. If you succumb to others’ pressures, you’ll only be taking a step back in pursuing the law career you want and the one you’ll excel in.
Respect your teachers and elders.
Not only is law about making connections and creating a network of support for future gain, it’s also about learning what has worked for people you look up to. Although you will undoubtedly feel empowered by the amount of information you learn and the fact that you have a law degree, don’t let it lose sight of those who have helped forge the path you are about to embark on. There is always so much to learn and so much to teach – why becoming a law tutor isn’t a bad idea at some point in your career – so never think that you know everything and can be successful without being mentored. It’s all about compromise.
Anything worth doing is worth overdoing.
People will assess your capabilities as a legal professional by your work ethic, quality of work and willingness to jump through hoops. You need to be thorough and careful with everything you do, going back and re-checking things up to five times if that’s what it takes to get behind your work 110%. When you are confident in what you have done and are truly proud of it, then you know that you have worked to your potential and are ready to submit it for review.
As Abraham Lincoln once wrote to aspiring lawyer John M. Brockman, “the mode is very simple, though laborious, and tedious.” He then concluded that, from his own experiences, it all comes down to “work, work, work.” Don’t let this consume you, but remember that what you reap is what you sow.
Always look at the big picture first.
As I’m sure you know, planning and staying organized is vital for lawyers at any stage of their career. However, when lawyers are bombarded with little pieces of information they sometimes tend to take those pieces and try to make a satisfactory big picture from them. This is a no-no. Always have the big picture in mind and strategically fit those little pieces into it; not the other way around.
- On the line, online.
There are two parts to this tip. First, make sure you clean up ALL information about yourself online, from social media accounts like Facebook to YouTube comments you may have made on a friend’s video a few years ago. This isn’t only important for potential legal jobs, but also for cases in which other lawyers could be looking to get a little “something” to hold against you. The point is: you never know what may happen out there, so make sure everything is cleaned up online.
Second, stay on top of and master the latest legal technology out there. With new products, equipment and services continually being thrown out there, it’s a very good idea to know about it so you can be the master of that domain in your niche. It never hurts to have something else to offer to potential employers and clients, and as technology continues to drive the world we live in, this will never lose its importance.