In counseling young attorneys who are just starting their careers, we advise them think about and develop a plan for success. A critical element to that success is building the right relationships both internally at their firms/organizations and externally.
In law firms, building relationships is very much about aligning with the right partners – rainmakers and practice group leaders. At the junior level, getting visibility with the senior leadership is extremely difficult but becoming the ‘go to’ junior associate for the senior associates can pave the way to getting noticed by the partners. External relationships are equally important; building connections within the industry at large – colleagues, clients, vendors, and potential clients can all have a significant impact on the career of a young lawyer.
These relationships serve as the foundation for making the right connections, getting the right work, navigating the work landscape most effectively, and advancing in the workplace. Both internal and external relationships also serve as the foundation for business development. You should continually be thinking about not only how to make new connections, but also how to reconnect with and deepen your relationships with your current contacts.