This October I will celebrate completing my first year of practice. To memorialize this moment and hopefully provide some guidance to the new class of lawyers, here are six small bits of advice that I gleaned from my time as a first-year associate.
Take on challenging, substantive assignments, show up to networking events, help draft client advisories and legal articles. Say “yes” to such things, especially when it feels challenging or even a little scary because these experiences will help you grow and stand out.
Ask Questions, Many Questions
I’m sure you’ve heard this advice before, but ask questions, even if the question seems silly. For example, filing a notice of appearance isn’t taught in most law schools. You could either spend hours Googling how to do something as simple as this, or you could ask someone. Chances are, someone can answer your question faster than you can research the answer.
A lawyer is only as good as their attention to detail. So, check everything twice, maybe even three times, because the time to do that will always be significantly less than the time it would take you to redo it.