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Law Career Advice Roundup: Stay Positive While Finding Your Career

Law School Tuition Bubble map of law jobsThe law career news might be good or bad for you this week, depending on where you live. We’ve always known that the legal job market is local, but now we have a visual representation in this map (from Law School Tuition Bubble) showing the higher ratio of law school graduates to jobs in dark, and lower in light. How is it where you live? (via The Atlantic.)

With all that red on the map, it might be easy to get down. Sometime you need a little pep talk, and this week’s career path interview with criminal defense attorney Joey Jackson provides just that. He’s enthusiastic and positive.

But the bright outlook of Joey, the other guests and JDCOT founder Marc Luber isn’t empty. We’re not going to just say, “You can do it!” without telling you how to succeed in law or alternative careers for lawyers. That’s one reason hearing from those who have gone before you is so helpful. Marc asks his guest not just what they do but how they’ve achieved success in their fields in JDCOT’s career videos. Here are some additional tips:

  • The Best-Kept Career Secrets: This Brazen Careerist article provides five truly unique pieces of advice. I love the debunking of “no one love their job” myth. Joey Jackson is evidence of that. (via @Careeresquire)
  • An Amazing Mentor Isn’t Going To Appear And Solve All Of Your Problem: Business Insider published a great piece on finding a mentor without directly asking somebody to be your mentor.
  • 12 Rules For New Grads: These tips from Harvard Business Review are directed at college grads, but they are relevant to law grads, too. 
  • A Dozen Ways to Differentiate Your Law Practice: 12 more “rules” for different audience, but you can see some themes of what’s important at all stages of your career across the two articles. Both articles, for instance, advise that you keep on learning and be a likable person that others want to work with. 
  • Nicheties: How to Select Your Practice Areas: A few of the dozen tips deal with the need to have a niche. But how do you find your niche? Besides watching videos on JDCOT, this long article discusses the important factors you need to consider. (via @LeeRosen)
  • John Skiba of JD Blogger interviewed Marc recently. This week, tables were turned on John, with Lawyerist interviewing him. He shares an inside look into his bankruptcy practice and his life raising 6 kids on a farm.

Finally, it’s important to take some time to unwind, too. It will help you stay positive in the face of obstacles, and it will also give you the opportunity to step back and think about your work as a career rather than just a job. And let’s face it, summer just makes you antsy to get out of the office! For law firm associates, Above The Law has great posts on how to take vacation if you’re a young and single or if you have a family.

How will you be spending your summer? Vacation? Work? Bar Prep? Career research? Let us know in the comments section below.

JD Careers Out There web producer Megan SweasMegan Sweas is a web producer with JD Careers Out There. During a graduate journalism program at University of Southern California, she took a law class for fun. While many of her fellow journalists have made the transition to law, she’ll stick to writing about law careers.

 

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