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Considerations for Attorneys Entering the Job Market in a Down Economy; Drop It Like It’s Hot

This afternoon, I am presenting for the Boston University School of Law Graduate Tax Program on the topic of “Considerations for Attorneys Entering the Job Market in a Down Economy”–my apologies, short titles are not my strong suit. Despite the obvious problem that I know next to nothing about tax law, this is sort of off topic for the general LOMAP presentation, as it doesn’t necessarily fall under the category of law practice management. However, we have seen a spike in clients who are forced, due to the economy, to start their own practice, in an effort to gain experience, and to try to leverage that experience for a full-time legal position, working for someone else. It’s a difficult undertaking: to try to start your own law firm while simultaneously engaging in a full-on job search; and, while it may not be the best course (starting a law practice and succeeding at it generally requires more than a full-time effort), we certainly understand the tug of putting food on the table, and the desire, when there is instability all around, to try to maintain stability, by way of a, hoped-for, steady paycheck. One good thing about trying to walk this tightrope is that much of what you do to establish your networking position and marketing platform is the same whether you are trying to establish a law practice or trying to establish a professional image for the benefit of your resume. And, a good deal of the documents I will be making available as below address that issue in particular. If a tree falls in the forest, nobody hears. If a tree falls on you, you know about it. And, if a bears falls on a trampoline, well . . . well, you’ll see. Beyond providing an assist to those who are trying the found a law practice/find a job route, I think that the materials referenced will help those who are looking for their first legal job; and, with the economic situation being what it is, I have received inquires, both in and out of work, from people who are looking for general job search and career advice. A good part of my answer is below.

I have dropped tonight’s Powerpoint, and my presentation notes here. (I know, I can’t believe nobody else took “considerations”.) The short Powerpoint and notes cover some thoughts on the current market and contain advice on how to set yourself apart from the rest of the job seeking legal world with respect to your application documents, the creation and maintenance of your professional image and how to find and use good job hunting resources. Another great job search resource is the ABA’s Legal Career Guide, 2008 edition, which I have written on in a prior blog posting, and for which there is a featured article in this month’s edition of the ABA’s Law Practice Today webZine. (Webzine, eZine, Online Magazine??? I can never figure out what I’m supposed to call it.) And, if you can get to this before 3:15 pm today, it’ll be a sneak preview . . . because that’s when I start delivering this presentation myself. If you wanted to, you could pretend to be me, and run the Powerpoint and read through the script. Actually, that’s creepy. Don’t do that.

On a side note, the MediaFire dropsite is something we use frequently here at LOMAP.

And, I’m already feelin’ the Spring long weekend, so that’s it for me. (Thank God it’s not so cold out anymore.) This may be the shortest blog post I’ll ever do.

If you’re not yet there, this jaunty little number’ll get you into that weekend mood: Check out my favorite Dire Straits song, and one of the best videos ever. Ah, I love the 80’s.