A law degree is not a passport to a successful legal career anymore. Lawyers should possess skills that will help them advance in the career ladder. Even if you don’t have the needed skills, practice and persistence are key to success. Your skills are something you can work on and develop over time. Here are 7 skills a lawyer should possess not only in order to advance on the career ladder but also to love what they do.
I cannot think of a good lawyer that has not good communication skills. Lawyers should be articulate both in written and spoken language. The language of a lawyer should be convincing. This is something they will need in a courtroom.
If you are not good enough at communicating convincingly and confidently, you can take up public speaking courses. This is an investment that will pay you back in the course of your career.
Lawyers should be good enough not only at speaking but also at listening. A lawyer that thinks about his mistress or a good cup of coffee during testimony and witness interrogation is not a good lawyer. It seems paradoxical, but good listening is even harder than good public speaking.
3.Open to Opportunities
When you have your mind open to possibility, magic can happen. A lot of lawyers miss opportunities only because they are stuck to the routine and are conservative. This takes away from the chances you may have. You need to be open to opportunities that come on your way.
Creativity is the flavor of a legal career. Unless a lawyer displays creativity in problem-solving, even logic is powerless. It often happens that the best solutions are not the most obvious ones and you need to think outside of the box.
5.Authenticity and Loyalty
Sometimes lawyers lose that natural flavor of being oneself. This is a fault many lawyers commit when they try to be “the good lawyer.” The stereotypes and preconception guide lawyer’s behavior making him more like someone “who knows what is good and bad” and will never divert from that. Being natural is something that will make you a good lawyer even if a little odd.
In addition to that, lawyers should have a sense of loyalty to their profession and to their mission. Without a commitment to what you do, you will lose the sense of belonging and will not accomplish things in the needed manner.
Even if you are the best law school graduate, your academic knowledge is of little value if you cannot work with people. Lawyers’ work is directly connected with clients. After all the decisions you will make affect people. You must be able to read others to be competent in those decisions.
7.Lawyer: Analytical Skills
I am mentioning analytical skills at the end of the list even though this is skill number one for a lawyer. I do that because you will end of being a good lawyer with good analytical skills who does not enjoy his career if you are not authentic, loyal, creative, able to understand people, good at communicating and listening. You need the first 6 skills to love what you do in addition to do it well.
However, to absorb large volumes of data and be able to distill it into something manageable, you need to have analytical skills, and this goes without saying.
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