How To Get A Job At A “Small” Firm (Part 1)

This past weekend, I had dinner with a good friend.

My friend has graduated law school and is presently enjoying the best summer of his life studying for the bar.

My friend has been honored with a scholarship to clerk at a firm in Europe for six months where he will work for a firm and take classes at a university.

My friend was asking me how to get a job when he returns. Like many law students, he was thinking that working at a large firm probably isn’t for him. He commented that it seems very hard to find employment at a smaller firm.

Here’s my advice:

Step 1: Figure out where you want to live. This may seem obvious but the sooner you identify the area of the country where you wish to live – the easier it will be to find and get a  job.

Law is by and large a local profession. To succeed in a smaller firm, I think it is imperative to set roots, make connections, and become known in a local community. At this point, it would be hard for me to pick up and practice law in California.

Ask yourself, where you see yourself being happy. Identify what’s important to you (family, friends, climate) and make a decision as to where you want to live.

The earlier in your legal career you can figure out where in the world you want to practice the better.

If you are a small firm in Massachusetts, feel free to contact me about my friend. He’ll make a great associate for someone.