Susan Smith Blakely

Best Friends at the Bar: How Much Pampering Do Women Lawyers Really Need?

Editor's Note: This post originally appeared on the Best Friends at the Bar blog on November 4, 2011.I am in a conundrum this morning.  I just read a thought-provoking article from Law.Com titled ” ‘Flex’ Firm Muscle” in the October 17th edition.  (Yes, I am a week behind in my reading.  Life is full of challenges.)And, that last point (the life challenges part) is exactly the source of my conundrum.  Life is full of challenges, and we are expected to rise to them.  In fact, that is what we should expect of ourselves.  But, is that the message that is being sent…

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Susan Smith Blakely

Best Friends at the Bar: Are Flexible Hours the Cure For the Ills of Women Lawyers?

Editor's Note: This post originally appeared on the Best Friends at the Bar blog on November 1, 2011.Well, not all the ills affecting women lawyers, but certainly some of them, may be reduced by availability of flexible and alternative work schedules.  This fairly fundamental position was recently addressed by The Grindstone on line, and I think it is a starting point.  As The Grindstone recognized, it can also be related to the issue of retaining women lawyers, always a subject first and foremost in my mind.However, we should not get too carried away to think that the availability of flexible schedules is…

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Susan Smith Blakely

Best Friends at the Bar: More Top Ten Tips for Women in Law

Editor's Note: This post originally appeared on the Best Friends at the Bar blog on October 27, 2011.My last post included the first five Tips for Women in Law from Claudette Christian, Co-Chair of Hogan Lovells, the international mega firm.  Here are the final five tips.6.   Don’t fake sincerity.  Here Ms. Christian is cautioning you to understand the various cultures and personal relationships within those cultures as you develop international business.  However, sincerity is also important in your daily dealings with people at your firm.  My take on this is to always be genuine.  Anything false or contrived will be obvious to…

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Susan Smith Blakely

Best Friends at the Bar: Top Ten Tips For Women in Law

Editor's Note: This post originally appeared on the Best Friends at the Bar blog on October 25, 2011. Claudette Christian knows what it takes to succeed in business.  She is the Co-Chair of the Board at Hogan Lovells.  I am sure you are familiar with this Big Law global practice.Christian has devoted her life to leadership, diversity and inclusion, as reported in Forbes on line in the October 17th edition.  Here are her 10 tips for women in business, and they are so close to what I write about, that it is not only helpful for you but validating for me.  Claudette…

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Susan Smith Blakely

Best Friends at the Bar: From the Air and Space Law World: We Have Touchdown!

Editor's Note: This post originally appeared on the Best Friends at the Bar blog on October 20, 2011.Today Best Friends at the Bar had touchdown—not on the moon, but close.  Let me tell you about it and why it was so important.I was on a panel sponsored by the American Bar Association Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section today.  The conference is held anually in Washington, DC and is attended by attorneys in the aviation and space law practices.  This year’s panel was designed around the Best Friends at the Bar project, and other panelists were women aviation lawyers in both the…

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Susan Smith Blakely

Best Friends at the Bar: Follow Your Passion To A Non-Profit

Editor's Note: This post originally appeared on the Best Friends at the Bar blog on October 18, 2011. Yesterday I attended a program at George Mason University Law School on public interest and non-profit job opportunities.  Among the panelists was Reena Glazer, the Assistant Director of the Law Firm Pro Bono Project at the Pro Bono Institute (“PBI”) in Washington, DC.  I really liked some of the things that she had to say, and I want to share them with you.Ms. Glazer is a graduate of Barnard College, Columbia University and Duke University School of Law, where she was the Editor-in-Chief of…

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Susan Smith Blakely

Best Friends at the Bar: Sharpen Your Marketing Skills and Fasten Your Seatbelts!

Editor's Note: This post originally appeared on the Best Friends at the Bar blog on October 6, 2011.The principal of LawBiz Management Company, Ed Poll, has some interesting things to say about  the marketing skills of women lawyers.  Mr. Poll has practiced law on all sides of the table for 25 years– as a corporate general counsel, government prosecutor, sole practitioner, partner, and law firm chief operating officer, and he ought to know a thing or two.According to his theories, if law firms encourage women in the interpersonal marketing arena and if women engage, women will be very successful marketers,and they will…

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Susan Smith Blakely

Best Friends at the Bar: How Well You Interview, Part II

Editor's Note: This post originally appeared on the Best Friends at the Bar blog on September 15, 2011.Hopefully, you paid attention to Part I on interviewing tips.  If not, it would be a good idea to scroll back and take a look.  I covered many of the basics in my last blog, but there is still a lot of practical stuff to consider.For instance…Talk slowly and speak up.  If you are lucky enough to get to the top of the food chain in your interviews, you will be talking to people who may have lost part of their hearing at their advanced…

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Susan Smith Blakely

Best Friends at the Bar: How Will You Interview?

Editor's Note: This post originally appeared on the Best Friends at the Bar blog on September 13, 2011.It is no coincidence that most law school job interviews start in October.  Halloween is in October, after all, and both the Hallowed Eve and law school job interviews have something significant in common.  They both can be pretty SCARY.So, you know me by now, and I consider it one of my important jobs to take the scary out of some of this stuff for you.  Job interviews can be a huge pain in the neck or they can be a valuable educational experience.  The…

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Susan Smith Blakely

Best Friends at the Bar: How Do You Rate Your Commitment to Law Practice?

Editor's Note: This post originally appeared on the Best Friends at the Bar blog on September 21, 2011.I participated on a panel last night at George Mason University Law School. The event was sponsored by the Women’s Law Association, and the other panelists were a former Administrative Judge for the Department of Interior and a member of the Career Services staff at the law school. There was a lot of interesting information about the practice experience of the panelists and some candid observations about the past and future for women in the law.One of the comments that caught my attention was about…

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