The Best Career Advice I’ve Been Given: Watch Your Feet

I’m clumsy by nature. Not the cute clumsy, where you fall into a handsome man’s arms, but the stub your toe and break it kind of clumsy.  I quickly found that I could either live in steel-toed boots or watch my feet as I walked. My favorite summer sandals don’t come in steel-toed options, so down I look. Growing up, this was my parents’ greatest annoyance. They would take me to an art museum, and I would stare at my feet, to the beach, and I would stare at my feet, to a beautiful view, and I would stare at…

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Setting Intentional Goals in the New Year

January 1st brings a new beginning. It is the start of a new year and is the perfect time to set new goals to achieve. Many people use January 1st as a time to plan out what they want to accomplish for the upcoming year, and they use it as a time to reflect on the year before. January 1st typically feels like a fresh start, and that anything is possible. The issue is that halfway through January, life tends to set in, and before many people know it, they are reverting to bad habits and putting their goals off…

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Setting Yourself Up for Success on the Bar Exam from Day One

Studying for the bar exam is no small task. Countless hours are spent reading, answering practice questions, reviewing practice questions, and the study cycle continues.  At the onset of your designated preparation period, it is always a good idea to consider the following items because, if overlooked, they could result in being detrimental to success and ultimately, bar passage.   Environment. How is your study environment? Do you need absolute silence or do you prefer to have background noise? Do you value organization or do you work well with a bit of clutter? Whichever is best for you, be sure to…

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Millennial Women

Auld Lang Syne

2019 is quickly drawing to a close, and so is our Ms. JD WIR year. What a year it’s been! We’ve enjoyed the opportunity to think more deeply about our careers as well as consider issues that are of particular interest to millennials. We’ll carry this experience with us into 2020 and beyond. The end of 2019 also seems like the perfect opportunity to consider the somewhat cliché topic of New Year’s Resolutions.  Yes, there are people on both sides of the debate. Some people will tell you that resolutions are worthless because no one ever keeps them. Others will…

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What’s the best piece of career advice you have received? - “Don’t let perfect be the enemy of good”

I grew up learning a form of classical Indian dance called Odissi that demanded rigorous practice and meticulous attention to detail. Throughout the years, my guru gently corrected my form in innumerable ways. She would even correct the sound that my feet made when they hit the ground, which she said was a dead giveaway of whether I was applying the right technique in my stepping. My focus on the minutiae of my movements translated well in other areas of my life. I was the type of high school student who would pore over a reading assignment for hours, trying to make sure…

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Dominate Your Purpose: Be Yourself. Do Good Work.

It is no surprise to me at all that my number one peace of career advice comes from my mother. At a very young age, I remember her saying, “Always remember to dominate your purpose.” She would say it when I was approaching a new phase in life or when I was faced with a difficult challenge. In reflecting on the various points in my life when I heard this powerful phrase, I realize that my interpretation of its meaning has evolved over time. When I was a child, it meant to give my very best at school and in my activities.…

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Do Certain Personalities Make More Successful Lawyers?

Results from a study published by the Arizona Summit Law Review concluded that the stereotypical “lawyer personality,” in which thinking dominates feeling, may not apply to successful women lawyers.  The study, Super Women Lawyers: A Study of Character Strengths, found that women who excel in the profession “exhibit a predominance of heart strengths as opposed to more analytical head strengths, with gratitude and kindness appearing most frequently.” After tests and interviews with women named to Super Lawyers, the study found: Gratitude was the most common top strength, followed by kindness, social intelligence, zest – all of which are termed heart strengths; Of the top ten strengths, the…

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You’ve landed the in-house job, now what?

Landing a new in-house position can come with an initial feeling of exhilaration, but the change associated with moving to a new company, or moving in-house for the first time, can feel daunting and intimidating.  I’ve moved to a few different in-house departments over my decade of practice, and while each organization has been different, I’ve learned a few core maxims that help set myself up for long term success.  1. Expect the unexpected.   No matter how much research you’ve done on the company or the industry, or how many people you interviewed with prior to accepting the position, you…

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Desiree Goff

What is the number one piece of career advice you received?

There is an old sage in medicine: when you hear thundering hooves, look for horses not zebras. The premise is that if you are searching for a diagnosis, always go with the more common (e.g. horse) diagnosis. Don’t look for a zebra when the solution only needs horse medicine. This phrase can also be applied to law as well. Current statistics show us that women are under represented in practice, partnership, and fields such as intellectual property. Women in leadership are zebras in both the legal and biotechnology worlds. According to the American Bar Association’s “A Current Glance at Women…

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“Don’t Put All Your Eggs in One Basket”

The best career advice -- “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket” -- does not even have an author. We’ve all heard the phrase, perhaps for different contexts, including dating and investing. Yet, I most appreciate the versatile nature of the idiom when applied to my nontraditional career path and future aspirations.   First, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket” is a sound approach when seeking opportunities. When I talk to a mentee in the middle of their job search, they often share a focus on one category of positions. As a mentor, I believe it is…

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