By K Hernan • July 16, 2008•Other Career Issues
Sorry to report that I have wasted my money on another lawyer career guide that wasn't worth it. This book full disclosure: the new lawyer's must-read career guide is just not good. One the cover it says "An indispensible mentoring guide for young lawyers and those about to enter the practice of law". That statement couldn't be more wrong. First, the book is very dispensible. In fact, the information offered by this book is dispensed by every would-be career counselor and advice-giver out there; it is information you can generally glean from life's experiences if you are even a little perceptive. The advice is so basic that it is not useful. Second, the book tries to be too many things to too large an audience. It is more 1/2 about finding a job out of law school and 1/2 about how to navigate that job once you have it. This really means that it doesn't do a good job of meeting the needs of either the young lawyer or the law student. If anything, this book should really be marketed to law students -- but, even then, it is not worth it.
Take this nugget of advice:
Occasionally, a client wiil request a budget consisting of a written estimate of the type and amount of services that the firm expects to provide for a client in a given matter. The preparation of a budget is a good exercise for lawyers because it forces them to think about the value of their services and provides a yard-stick by which to measure that service.
Really? Is this insightful?
How about this one in the chapter titled "Focus on Gender in Law Firms":
... it needs to be said that male and female attorneys each bring unique perspectivies and abilities to their careers, which adds depth and color to the profession as a whole.
Again, how is this indispensable advice; how is this a mentoring guide? The book is full of these platitudes.
Now, I must admit that some of the non-usefullness of this book may be because it was written in 2001. That didn't seem too long ago to me when I bought this book but it is, after all, 7 years ago and perhaps a lot has changed. One thing that has definately changed is the use of the internet to get a lot of the basic insight that this book offers.
In the end, this book is a waste of your time. I wouldn't even check it out from the library.