Articles From the Team
Your career: what needs to change in 2020?
Slowing down for Christmas and spending time with loved ones provides an opportunity to reflect on the year, and perhaps what you’d like to change.
As a lawyer, it’s always worth researching the market at this time of year. This doesn't necessarily mean to look for a new role, as generally speaking, things can slow down around Christmas time. It’s a good idea to do a bit of market research to identify whether the salary you’re paid is competitive enough, and whether you’ve had opportunities for progression and/or business development.
It’s important you’re afforded opportunities in your current role in order to remain competitive in your career.
A competitive salary now, increases your chance of receiving a competitive salary in the future and for the longevity of your career. Most employers have a salary banding range and if you’re at the bottom of this, it’s likely your salary will increase by a couple of thousand pounds only – unless you have more experience compared to other lawyers. The exception to this is when a firm has a clear salary structure for every PQE level – this is where you can increase your salary significantly if you’ve been underpaid for a while.
Progression opportunities - not just promotion
Whether you’ve been afforded progression opportunities is equally important because it’s a reflection of success. This doesn’t necessarily mean promotion. Employers will look at the complex matters you work on and the level of responsibility you’ve had. Perhaps you’ve demonstrated leadership?
Business development and a common hiring dilemma for law firms
If you’re asking why business development is so important, it probably means you haven’t done enough of it. As a recruiter, I regularly speak to law firm partners and ask them what difficulties they face when interviewing potential lawyers. The biggest issue, which seems to come up time and time again, is lack of business development experience – particularly senior lawyers.
As you become more senior in your role, expectations grow. Most senior positions involve bringing in more work (if you can’t bring a following). I come across many cases where lawyers are turned down for roles due to a lack of business development experience. If you haven’t had much exposure, don’t fear. If this is the case, it’s simply a matter of portraying a keen interest in doing so. It’s also worth speaking to your current firm about gaining exposure.
If you feel you’re not being developed enough in your current role then please get in contact. January is always a busy time of year for recruiters and we will be happy to assist you in any way we can.