Secondment Lessons Learned – Part One
Secondment is a great opportunity for learning. In particular, I am enjoying the opportunity to learn first hand what it is clients value and how law firms can improve their services and the overall client experience. Here are a few lessons I have learned so far.
1. Clear Conflicts
Secondment Lesson: Be sure to clear conflicts otherwise you may be at risk of being the subject of heated discussion in the break rooms. Trust me, no one wants that.
2. Be Patient
Secondment Lesson: Corporations especially large corporations have many procedures and protocols that need to be followed and can take a lot of time. This can lead to delays that lawyers in big law firms often have trouble understanding. If you have a client who is radio silent on an engagement letter, be patient as it is highly likely that this is just the way the business operates and in house counsel or your point of contact may not be able to expedite the process.
3. Lunch is at Noon
Secondment Lesson: At the firm, lunch breaks are taken whenever lawyers can squeeze in a break between billable hour, client requests and firm citizenship activities. I’ve learned that for a large company, the masses typically lunch at noon. That is when the cafeteria lines are long, the tables full and calls may go unanswered. If you are looking to connect with the business folks, you may want to consider blocking off 12-1pm as folks take the time to refuel. This may be the perfect time for lawyers to refuel as well.
More lessons to come!