Attorneys and Law Students Propel Their Legal Careers Forward With LegalMentor
NEW YORK, April 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Newly admitted attorneys, are you frustrated by the toughest legal job market of the decade? If you’re employed, are you overwhelmed to realize you need skills you definitely weren’t taught in law school? A resource exclusively for attorneys and aspiring lawyers has launched at LegalMentor.com.
Journeyman lawyers, are you worried about the health of your careers as large law firms lay off your colleagues and extend the time it takes to make partner? Concerned that your practice area isn’t where you really want to be anymore, or your skills could be stronger?
Veteran attorneys, are you ready to make a radical career shift? Interested in learning new legal skills by working with experienced colleagues in other practice areas? Or is it the right time to give back to your professional community?
All of these attorneys and law students can benefit from a free membership at LegalMentor.com. LegalMentor(SM) launched the site as a resource exclusively for attorneys and aspiring lawyers of all ages, practices and experience levels looking to boost their careers. Legal mentoring, in which an attorney gives career advice and guidance to a less experienced colleague, is an important attorney career development tool that costs nothing but time — yet is significantly underutilized. For those who are ready to take the next step, LegalMentor offers a members-only classified section matching their interests and needs with potential legal mentors.
In addition to matching legal mentors and proteges, the site also offers attorney career development articles intended to guide attorneys and law students of all experience levels. There you can learn about establishing a practice, promoting one online, switching practice areas and transforming to other interests.
Newly admitted attorneys will find that mentoring early in their careers helps them learn business and legal skills they might have otherwise struggled to develop over years. But for experienced attorneys, legal mentorships are ways to learn skills they need to go in-house, start their own firms or expand a practice. For example, if you keep getting client requests in an unfamiliar area of law, you can learn those skills while referring potential clients to your mentor. Legal mentoring particularly helps with networking, a vital skill for building client lists and lasting professional relationships, but one that law schools say students are reluctant to embrace.
Legal mentorships are especially relevant right now because the down economy is disrupting the traditional attorney employment market. Surveys show fewer law school graduates are employed at all — and those with jobs are frequently looking for something better. Meanwhile, the lockstep compensation model for associates is losing favor, and large firms are making fewer partners. Even veteran attorneys can face problems when they practice an area of law that clients have taken in-house to save money.
LegalMentor(SM) is the vision of Carl Bartol, a public-sector attorney and web aficionado. Due to his own concerns about government budget cuts and downsizing, Mr. Bartol began exploring ways to develop additional special skills such as mediation, and look into alternative attorney careers. During that process, he became convinced that legal mentoring is a powerful and underappreciated tool that benefits both parties. Moreover, after attending numerous professional gatherings, he realized legal mentoring could also help with many of the most common attorney problems reported by colleagues. Still happily employed in his chosen career path, Mr. Bartol wants to enhance opportunities in his profession for all.
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