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Old 01-18-2010, 10:40 AM   #69
Tad
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Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Ontario, Canada
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First, A big "DITTO" on what Rainy said. She expressed that very well I thought. Whatever issues one has, it is not fair to make someone else suffer for them if we can avoid it.

Second: Liam, you are of the wrong generation and country to know this cheesy rock song, but it was popular when I was a kid.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=STiuregSvHg
Nothing wrong with what they say in the chorus, but mostly I want you to listen to the verses. I totally get the difficulty of your situation, but what was missing is what you intend to do about it. Sure it is far easier to say (or sing) than to actually make it happen.....but really I think this is one of the fundamentals of living a good life:

"If you don't like
What you got
Why don't you change it
If your world is all screwed up
Rearrange it
"

Because really, what is the alternative? It might take years, it might not play out the way you expected or hoped.....but if you don't try then the odds of things working how you hope are a whole lot worse!

In particular, in a system as entrenched as "BigLaw," just 'doing what you are supposed to do' and following all of the rules won't get you too far in the end. Look at the pyramid structure of those firms, there are how many eager young faces who join each year, and how many partnerships that actually come open in a year?

I can't comment on your particular firm, but from I've heard about of similar organizations maybe a few people get to the top by following all the rules and being good boys, but in general the people who come out on top are the ones who have the ability to tell anyone to screw off, and make it stick. That is to say, you have to be good at what you do (fundamental basis for respect), but then it takes confidence in that ability, and maybe more critically it takes drive--drive simply to win, drive to force a point, or drive really for anything that motivates you.

(by the way, in that sort of thing you do have to know how to win without making others lose face; really the key is staying positive and making it reasonably clear that you'll fight if you have to. Wolves don't hunt the strong elk that stands up to them, they go after the ones that look weak or that run away.)

Or, if you are not willing to force others at your firm to be grateful to have you on their team exactly as you are, then start figuring out what your exit strategy is.

Or something!
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