Pursuing a legal career, as lawyers would even tell us, is not an easy one.
Some would go further to say that it is even more challenging for women. Women face unique challenges that men may not need face at all. For instance, women may have to choose between a successful legal career and having a good marriage and raising children. We also hear and read about issues of promotion and pay disparity when they work in some law firms.
It needs to be noted as well that pursuing a legal career requires years of study and preparation, passing the bar exams and finally establishing one’s name as a lawyer. But it seems like that in the end, one major challenge one must hurdle is the reality that perhaps there are just too many lawyers out there.
Too Many Lawyers? Statistics from the American Bar Association point out that in the US, there are now about 1.3 million lawyers! And about 35, 000 new lawyers enter the workforce yearly!
A deeper research would also reveal that some countries in the world also share a similar scenario.
Well, given that there may be that many lawyers and yet you still want to pursue a legal career, what could you do to be able to practice a successful and meaningful one?
Choose the Road Less Travelled. A little bit of research may show you that though there may be that many lawyers in the whole nation, not all states or cities in the end are created equal. Not all states (or provinces) and cities have as many lawyers as those of others. Perhaps you can consider relocation there? Or you can choose to be based where it is easy for you to travel by road or by air to these neighboring areas where you can provide legal services to clients.
Fear Not a Marketing Connection. We have a brave new world. In the past, word of mouth and placing a small ad of a lawyer’s services on the newspaper may work, but it may not be true anymore today. This may not be enough for you to be known among the many lawyers out there. This can be the time to consider engaging a marketing firm specifically aimed to help lawyers. It can be the right time to connect with one such as the Lawyers of Distinction.
Consider Specialization. In an article, Montana Supreme Court Justice James C. Nelson was quoted: ”if I had it to do over again, I’d …. specialize. It’s hard to do in a small rural state, but the law is becoming so complex that in most areas, you’d be well served to pick an area you enjoy and learn everything you can about it and specialize in it.”
What Nelson said makes sense. Having a specialization can bring you joy and a level of expertise, and in the end, it can also help you serve better your clients. Potential clients will also be able to find you easily based on your specialization, which they can access online via the Lawyers of Distinction site.
Just because there are challenges in pursuing a legal career (or any career for that matter), it does not mean that there is no way forward beyond that challenge.