Friday, December 21, 2018

Did you Get a Raise for the New Year?

The end of the calendar year is a typical time for performance reviews for many employers, law firms included.  Throughout our program, students receive emphasis on two major suggestions regarding salaries and raises in a typical law office.

1. Come to work every day with effort and intent to be organized, competent and dialed into the tasks of the day, week and month ahead.  Meet assigned deadlines. Complete your assigned work to the best of your ability.  Communicate with your supervising Lawyer(s) and do the things they need you to do to free them up to best serve their clients and to be able to serve more clients.

2. Prepare for your year-end or salary review. Never take it for granted that all you do will be fully recognized at your year-end review. Know your value to the firm. It isn't that difficult to determine how many hours and dollars you helped generate for the firm and you should know those number$.  Beyond the dollar$, think about and document all of the successes you contributed to over the past year.  And successes are great, but be objective and think about and be ready to acknowledge anything that didn't go well.  Be ready to acknowledge things you could have done better or you want to be prepared to do better in the future.

Take care of number 1 and raises and salary typically take care of themselves.  Do number 2 and you will help yourself and your supervising Lawyer have both a productive year-end review and a more successful New Year.   If you do these things and you do not receive reasonable recognition it may be that the circumstances dictate you consider the action we suggest when confronted with concerns about ethical or less than reasonable business practices.  Dust off your resume, start applying for and find a new employment opportunity.

The following article offers great tips on what to do if you haven't had a scheduled year-end or salary review.