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Throwaway999

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  1. Thanks guys! During our phone interview, I said exactly what luckycharm suggested re: not seeing eye to eye. In person, we barely talked about the old workplace, except what I learned from there substantively regarding the law and procedures. I did emphasize that I gave adequate notice and left on good terms. I really really hope this new situation works out, as I can't afford to make another jump.
  2. Update for you guys: I quit without having a job lined up. Ever day there was just so draining that it prevented me from dedicating much energy to job hunting or to setting up on my own. I gave two-weeks notice and worked hard until the end. I noticed that things improved quite a bit after I gave notice, but I thought the improvement was akin to leaving an abusive relationship, where they improve after you threaten to leave, only to revert back to their old selves after some time. Question for you guys: I have an interview with a local lawyer who knows my former boss pretty well -- not sure if they are on perfect terms. How do I explain what happened? How much should I divulge? If I apply to places out of my city, is it OK to just say I was shadowing lawyers who couldn't give me employment?
  3. Thank you everyone for your responses. I've considered everything... but I still haven't quit. To provide an update on the situation: Another partner at the firm has been giving me limited amounts of work and investing a lot in training me. He's been happy with my work and has a good track record of retaining employees. He's been encouraging me to bring in work for the firm by advertising. I think there's a realistic possibility I'll be able to, but it's never a guarantee. I feel under a lot of pressure to repay him for his investment. Nonetheless, I see this as one route for me to escape my boss. Once I can bring in clients for him or for me, I'll be less subject to her control. My boss, however, has become even more intolerable. She's been telling her assistants repeatedly, and within earshot of me, that I'm a burden on her finances and suggesting that I'm useless for her practice. I can tell that her assistants don't respect me. One of them has become outright hostile, insubordinate, and a bully. I try to ignore it as much as possible. In addition, she's becoming more stingy in giving me work. I'm afraid to directly ask why, because I think it's partially that she will have to pay a greater portion of my salary if more of my time is dedicated to her practice. There was also a promise that I would get a portion of my billings if I billed above my salary, and she's pretty much told me she doesn't want to honour this promise. Also, her assistants can do a lot of the in-office work, so why would she give it to me. As such, I worry about the transition phase between becoming independent and relying on her for work to justify my salary. I think my options are to either try to transition as quickly as possible to being independent (and hope I succeed), or quit ASAP. On a final note, my boss is approaching the end of her career and has yet to train and retain a junior lawyer. Others at the office told me she's notoriously difficult and her practice produces a high turnover rate. She's retained one assistant long-term by paying her large sums of money. However, they have a toxic relationship. I actually like it when they fight, because the negative energy is transferred onto each other, and I'm less of a scapegoat for their frustrations, at least temporarily. Also, she told me that if I apply for another job, she'll hear about it through the grapevine. She won't let me create a website for myself as a marketing mechanism. (I might do it anyway.)
  4. Thank you everyone for your insightful responses! I knew I'd be expected to get my own clients eventually -- and I want to as well to supplement the meager salary -- but I was under the impression this would start after a few months of time, and not a few weeks. This is because 1. I've just been kind of overwhelmed with the work itself thus far. They knew they were hiring a new call with almost no experience in their areas of law. 2. The lawyer I'm working for has a backlog of work starting from the middle of this year, which we haven't even touched yet. 3. On top of that, I'm getting more urgent work pretty frequently. 4. Also, I need to be added to their website and need business cards. The partners haven't talked to me yet about business development. I was told to expect this talk later on. In any case, to preempt what would eventually be expected of me, what's the first step in business development?
  5. I'm hating it so much that it's affecting my mental health. First, what I hate the most is that I'm cloistered in a tiny, isolating office from 9-5 with the lawyer and an assistant, who may or may not be in a good mood. Second, this lawyer thinks it's OK to ask me to do her daughter's high school homework, and puts pressure on me to do the homework well. I literally spent hours of my evening writing an essay and re-learning algebra. Third, this lawyer is SO particular about certain aspects of the work. However, the work product that's expected may just depend on the day and her mood that day. So I feel like I can do nothing right, and everything I do will just have to be re-done. I feel like I contribute very little value. In the past, my supervisors were generally happy with my work. Fourth, the lawyer recently started talking passive aggressively about not having enough clients and firing office workers as a result. She's already mentioned that I need to work for my (somewhat meager) salary. Now I feel under pressure to get clients when I don't feel confident in myself yet as a new lawyer. I also don't have any promotional materials out there right now, and even then it might take time. Fifth, I have a VERY difficult time getting anything approved because there's just so much going on. Because of all the above and more, it's really taking a toll on my mental health. I'm thinking of asking to work part-time so I don't have to be in the office everyday from 9-5. I'd rather get paid less for the flexible hours, and she might feel more gracious towards me if she's investing less money. I would eventually try to find my own clients to supplement her payments. Is this a good plan? (Throwaway account for obvious reasons.)
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