As a young lawyer, I made the mistake of thinking that hard work was enough. If I produced quality work product and won the majority of my cases, my career would be golden. Unfortunately, this is simply not true. The proverbial fallen tree in the woods that makes no sound if no one can hear it comes to mind. I was that tree.
Both as an assistant district attorney and as an in-house attorney for a prominent broker-dealer, I believed I was the ideal lawyer. I conducted numerous hearings and trials successfully, received positive feedback from clients, and got along well with other employees—professional and support staff included. Yet, while I always received good evaluations, I was consistently trumped by male colleagues in both rank and salary. What was I doing wrong? The answer is clear. I, like many of my female colleagues, was under the delusion that my superiors would simply recognize my talents and promote me accordingly. This does not happen.