You are a successful partner at a larger law firm with a significant book of business and a stellar reputation. As such, you are in demand and any law firm competitor would love to have you. You have endless options, so why would you use a legal recruiter? The first thing that comes to my mind to answer this question is for the same reason that LeBron James and Meryl Streep have agents. But a successful lawyer does not need a typical legal recruiter. As a Law Firm Matchmaker, or candidate-facing recruiter, I represent you, the partner, not the law firm. From my perspective, a good legal recruiter is your agent.
Like An Agent
I treat my job much like the agents of LeBron and Meryl do. I have three priorities or areas of focus for my clients.
- Negotiate the best possible deal for you. I know what the fair market price is for your book, experience, practice area, jurisdiction and so forth. I serve as a buffer between you and the law firm’s management team. This way I can ask for things and leverage you in ways that you may not be comfortable doing yourself. Not that lawyers typically get sneaker deals like LeBron, but I can negotiate not traditional items. Examples may include enhanced marketing budgets, signing bonuses, specific staffing, a seat on the Executive Committee, being named head of your group, and other perks.
- I have a deep understanding of the industry. My industry knowledge includes which practice areas are hot and in demand. Thus, firms are willing to pay more for lawyers with that expertise. I know what is going on in different jurisdictions. For example, how New York law firms have different COVID-19 reopening strategies than New Jersey law firms. This knowledge directly benefits my candidates with both compensation negotiation and supporting their personal needs.
- I know the other teams. By teams, I mean law firms. I know firm cultures and environments, and where there is a match for my candidate. I know the management philosophies of various law firm leaders. Do these philosophies match those of the partner I’m working with? Having my nose under the tent, I know which firms are growing and in good financial health. And which firms have succession plans on place. Obviously, I have knowledge to the contrary of these items. I know which firms have bad cultures, terrible reputations, poor financial health, and so on. I keep my candidates away from toxic locker rooms and away from abusive directors.
But, Not Like an Agent
Unlike the agents of LeBron and Meryl, I do not get paid by my partner candidates. Professional agents get paid a portion of their client’s salary or other compensation. When I find the right law firm for my candidate, that law firm pays my fee. Therefore, my candidates get the services of an agent at zero cost. Sounds surprisingly good, doesn’t it?
You may be able to go at it alone. But do you really have the time? Are you really in the best position to get all that you want and deserve? Like I said before, from my perspective, your legal recruiter is your agent. I would love to represent YOU and YOUR interests. Want to talk?