The late, great Jim Rohn has really inspired me throughout my career. Even now, I still listen to his audio CDs on my commute into work. He is a strong advocate of the principle that you get out of life what you put into it. If you have never heard of Jim Rohn or read any of his books, I urge you to do so – today! If you can’t afford to buy one, borrow one from the library. If you can’t get to the library, go to YouTube.com and watch some of his videos on there. I promise you that it will be worth it!
Going back to the original quote at the top of this post, I can honestly say that one of the best ways to get ahead in your legal career (or any career for that matter) is to go above and beyond your job description.
Do more than your employers expect of you. Read books on marketing, networking and how to succeed in business – these skills are as important to a solicitor nowadays as the legal knowledge gained at university. Attend networking events in your spare time without claiming the overtime. Run a law-related twitter account or blog. Write articles for your firm to publish on their website or newsletter – without being asked first! Set up a LinkedIn account and invite clients and colleagues (past and present) to recommend your work. Actively participate in relevant group discussions on Linkedin (such as groups related to your practice area or networking groups from your local area). Study your chosen practice area in your spare time. Read your Law Gazette instead of letting it gather dust in the corner of your office with the last 10 editions!
Law firms pay their trainees/NQ solicitors on the basis of the value that they bring to the firm. If you can increase that value by becoming more knowledgeable, bringing in new clients, promoting the firm and so on, it stands to reason that you will be worth more to the firm. Of course, it is possible to just go into work from 9am-5pm, do the work presented to you and then go home. And you may be lucky to get a pay rise on a yearly basis if your firm does annual reviews. But you will earn more money more quickly if you actively work on your value to the firm and put more effort in than they are expecting.
I promise you this – the more time that you invest in developing yourself and the more effort you put into marketing your firm, the more your employers will recognise and reward you for that time and effort. Hard work and effort = success. It is as simple as that.
To help you get started, I would personally recommend the following books: -
- See You at the Top by Zig Ziglar
- The Guide by William Holden
- The Art of Exceptional Living by Jim Rohn
- Marketing For Dummies (UK Edition) by Gregory Brooks
There are lots more that I could mention but this list is a good place to start. All of them are in my library and have ended up being more valuable to me than the money I spent on them.
And just because I’m a super nice blogger and want to share as much helpful material as I can with you, here is a clip from the legend himself to get you started. Don’t say I never give you anything!
Have a wonderful Wednesday!