By Jon Lewis
So, you’re one of those attorneys who has had little-to-no work for the last few months. You’ve still got your job for the moment (congratulations), but you’re wondering what you can do to help protect yourself. The answer? Lots.
1. Network Now-Make sure your trusted friends and contacts know that you’re open to hearing about opportunities. It’s a lot easier to get a new job when you currently have one, so don’t wait until the axe has fallen to reach out to those who can help you.
2. Consider Opportunities-Don’t be afraid to look. You’re in a lot more danger of joining the ranks of the unemployed if you stay where there is no work than if you move someplace that is specifically looking for an attorney with your skill set. The “good will” you may think you have where you are is less valuable than the “good work” you could be doing somewhere else.
3. Be Realistic-Now is not the time to be looking for that part-time in-house job in the entertainment industry; now is the time to make sure you don’t wind up with no job at all.
4. Broaden Your Skill Set-Offer to do whatever kind or work needs to be done at your current firm/company, even if its outside your usual comfort zone. At best, you may be able to avoid a lay-off by demonstrating your versatility at a time when employers are looking to make do with fewer people; at the very worst, you’ll have some additional skills to put on your resume if you do have to look for that new job someday.
A graduate of Yale Law School, Jon Lewis places corporate and intellectual property associates and partners in law firms and corporations. He has made numerous placements at top-200 law firms, several boutique law firms, and companies in the areas of mergers & acquisitions, securities, structured finance and derivatives, hedge funds, general corporate counseling, asset-based lending, and trademark law.
Prior to entering attorney placement in 1999, Jon was assistant trademark counsel at Joseph E. Seagram & Company in New York, and before that was an associate at the predecessor firm to the New York City office of Dorsey & Whitney. Jon graduated from Wesleyan University with high honors. Jon’s direct line is 646.431.3431 and firstname.lastname@example.org.