In Brief: A Career Legal Blog

In Brief - A Legal Career Blog from Major, Lindsey & Africa

So You Want To Be a GC? How to Get Your Resume to Stand Out From the Crowd

Posted by Melba Hughes & Kimberly Lerman

Mar 23, 2016 10:30:00 AM

How to Get Your Resume to Stand Out From the CrowdHave you ever applied for a General Counsel position and felt you were the perfect fit for the role but then never heard back after sending in your resume? General Counsel jobs are so coveted that inevitably the recruiters and HR departments attempting to fill these roles become overwhelmed with hundreds of applications shortly after beginning the search. As a result, they usually have large stacks of resumes to review, which makes it important to be sure your resume grabs their attention quickly. Below are some tips that can help ensure that your resume clearly demonstrates your qualifications for a GC role and help increase your chances of getting noticed.

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Topics: General Counsel, GC, evaluate, resume

Doing Good Is Good for the Soul and Business

Posted by Andrea Bricca & Deborah Ben-Canaan

Mar 3, 2016 1:46:29 PM

Doing Good Is Good for the Soul and BusinessOccasionally, we are presented with an opportunity to put our talents and skills to work for the greater good. As lawyers, we have studied and trained and gained a special skill set that is valuable to more than just our clients or organization. While these opportunities may seem futile since they are usually done for little or no money (aka "pro bono work"), they often benefit us in more ways than we are willing to admit.

For starters, pro bono work allows us to expand our horizons and gain experience in new areas. If you are an M&A lawyer, there is a very good chance you never see the inside of a courtroom, but you might be inclined to take a pro bono case that will get you into a courtroom to help someone in need. Junior attorneys who take on pro bono work may for the first time lead their own case—from start to finish— without having to work directly with a partner.

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Topics: General Counsel, pro bono

The Realities of Relocating Abroad: My Journey to Hong Kong

Posted by Nathan Peart

Feb 24, 2016 9:00:00 AM

The Realities of Relocating AbroadA move abroad brings exciting opportunities—a sense of adventure, travel and new friendships to be formed—but there is also the apprehension of making a move and all that goes with it. I often counsel my candidates on the realities of moving abroad, and having recently relocated myself, I understand what is involved in making such a move.

At the end of 2015, I made the decision to move from Major, Lindsey & Africa's London office to our Hong Kong office. I personally experienced three phases to my move that everyone will go through when they relocate. Hopefully, my insight will start you thinking about the things you need to think about when making a move internationally.

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Topics: Associate, relocation

Cross-Generational Teams: Building a Balance for the Right Price

Posted by Amanda K. Brady

Feb 18, 2016 10:00:00 AM

Building a Balance for the Right PriceClient relationships are the foundation of any law firm's success and oftentimes those relationships are built—and maintained—by the most seasoned members of the firm. But how does a firm maintain those relationships with talent ebbing and flowing—and getting younger? The answer: developing well-rounded multi-generational client teams.

At Thomson Reuters’ 23rd Annual Marketing Partner Forum, I moderated an in-depth discussion titled The Ties that Bind: Building Cross-Generational Leadership in Client Relations and Business Development, where three corporate counsel and two law firm leaders shared their experience with and expectations of multi-generational teams.

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The Profiles of Interviews Gone Wrong

Posted by Deb Ben-Canaan

Feb 10, 2016 9:30:00 AM

The Profiles of Interviews Gone WrongI am certain that each of you have read countless articles on what to do in interviews and how to handle yourself throughout the interview process in order to get your dream job. In my almost 15 years at Major, Lindsey & Africa, I have seen candidates make a variety of mistakes despite their tenure and experience on their resumes. Hopefully, you will read this blog and take some practical advice away with you as I share the classic profiles of the people who make missteps in an interview.

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Topics: recruiting, job interview

Looking Beyond the Resume: How to Assess Intangible Skills When Evaluating Candidates

Posted by Melba Hughes & Kimberly Lerman

Feb 3, 2016 10:00:00 AM

How to Assess Intangible Skills When Evaluating CandidatesWhen deciding which candidate is the best fit for an executive position, reviewing resumes only gives you part of the picture, and evaluating candidates for skills that cannot be ascertained from a job application can be a daunting task. There's no doubt that assessing candidates on intangible skills such as leadership, strategic thinking, motivation and energy level is harder than identifying the folks with the best education, training and experience, but looking beyond the resume is essential to ensuring that the best candidate receives the job offer. If you find yourself with a slate of candidates that look similar on paper and you are having difficulty determining which candidate is the best fit for your role, consider the following suggestions to help distinguish one candidate from the next:

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Topics: evaluate, candidates, resume

The Candidate Experience Is Everything (When Hiring Top Talent)

Posted by Deborah Thompson

Jan 26, 2016 11:00:00 AM

The Candidate Experience is Everything When Hiring Top TalentThere are myriad ways for any one person to get to know your organization without ever walking through your office doors. One of those ways is through the "candidate experience." If you are hiring, how candidates—potential future employees—are treated is one of the most important determinants of whether these prized potential future employees will consider working for your company. And in the age of social media and the Internet, candidates talk; employees talk; everyone who has ever worked with your organization talks—and potential candidates do their research. If your recruiting process is branded as "candidate unfriendly," ­­­­this will almost certainly negatively impact the quality and volume of resumes submitted to your organization either directly or through your outside search firm partner. That is why it is vitally important to build—and maintain—your organization's brand by optimizing the candidate experience every time you are seeking to fill an open position. Your company's ability to successfully attract and recruit top talent depends on how well it manages the hiring process.

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Topics: candidates, hiring

Think Like Your Client – Succession Planning for the In-House Team

Posted by Brian Burlant

Jan 20, 2016 11:30:00 AM

Succession Planning for the In-House TeamThere are few things as disconcerting to a company as an unexpected succession gap in its C-suite. This holds true also for its in-house legal team. As recruiters, we see daily the pressures of finding replacements for in-house lawyers who are essential to their clients' business. Unfortunately, the General Counsel, who often is "putting out fires" and focused on other day-to-day and strategic business needs (e.g., sales, acquisitions or major lawsuits), may not dedicate the requisite time to succession planning. That should change. You want a succession plan, not succession panic.

Succession planning is essential both for the General Counsel role itself and for the broader legal team, particularly those performing critical support functions. Just as a valued General Counsel proactively counsels her clients to anticipate their business and legal needs, so, too, does she need to proactively structure her team to ensure the ongoing seamless servicing of the business when she or a member of her team transitions.

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Topics: General Counsel, succession planning

BigLaw 2016: A Look Ahead

Posted by Jeffrey Lowe

Jan 15, 2016 11:28:45 AM

BigLaw 2016 - A Look AheadSometimes you look back and see that the prognosticators got it all wrong. Other times, you look back and see that they were pretty much spot on. As we reflect on the predictions for BigLaw over the last several years, it's clear that many anticipated themes and trends discussed in the industry have, in fact, come to pass: The rich have gotten richer, the poor poorer and the "new" normal has many lawyers wistful for BigLaw's glory days (the 1990s through the mid-2000s). It is equally clear that each firm's trajectory for success (or failure) in the aftermath of the Great Recession was likely established in the immediate aftermath of the meltdown, if not sooner. Farsighted law firm leaders recognized that significant change was ahead, while others watched from the sidelines, failing to grasp that the rules for success had fundamentally, and irrevocably, changed. Below we discuss the key issues facing BigLaw in 2016:

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Topics: Law Firm, law firm adaptation, BigLaw

How to Hire Great People

Posted by Barrett Avigdor and Joanna Herman

Jan 12, 2016 2:44:31 PM

How to Hire Great PeopleAs a leader, one of the most important things you can do is to hire good people. The right person can help you solve important problems, make the team more productive and perhaps grow into a future leader. Selecting the wrong person to join your team can cost your organization up to five times their annual compensation, not including the hidden costs of lower morale, team dysfunction and management exhaustion.

If you want to be sure to get hiring right, bring in an expert to help you.

When you work with professional recruiters, you benefit from their deep connections and experience at finding—and vetting—the best candidates. These five steps will help maximize the value that a recruiter can deliver and help you make great hires:

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Topics: career planning, legal recruiter, hiring

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