To many of us, Labor Day marks the end of summer. Kids are heading back to school, vacation has come and gone, our batteries are recharged, and we are ready for work. At least, this was the traditional process and way of thinking during pre-COVID times. Settling into your back-to-school/back-to-work routine may be more challenging than usual now.
This year, law firms are contending with the Delta variant as they try to reopen their offices safely and efficiently. For example, some law firms are mandating vaccines while others are requiring mandatory in-person attendance.
On the other hand, some firms are offering flexible in-person/remote work schedules and no vaccine mandates. Where does your firm stand? Do the firm’s reopening policies and procedures align with your wants and needs?
Impact on You – The Person
Hopefully, as a partner, your law firm’s policies and procedures align with your personal choices. You agree with management’s decisions regarding all or most of the reopening decisions. Regardless of the issue – remote work flexibility (or inflexibility) as an example – you like the plans and are totally on board. No problem, you can hit the ground running.
On the other hand, what if you disagree with management’s decisions? Worse yet, you did not even get to articulate your personal concerns, wants, or needs. And now that decisions have been made, you cannot get satisfactory solutions to those issues that are important to you. From my experience, I know that it stings when you feel like you have no voice in your firm when you are a successful partner. In this instance, you can deal with the hand you are dealt or find a firm that will listen to you. More importantly, perhaps, join a firm that will honor and address your personal needs.
Impact on You – the Partner
Let’s say you are okay with the firm’s reopening plans and can easily slide into your back-to-work routine. In fact, management’s decisions really do not impact you personally. After all, you are a rainmaker. Rainmakers in your firm have complete flexibility to do their job as they please. All good, right?
Not so fast! Non-rainmakers are not afforded the same flexibility. Management’s reopening policies may not align with other attorneys and staff. And if they do not, how will this impact your practice? For instance, what happens if the policies cause an exodus of your team members? And these same policies make it hard to recruit replacements? At a minimum, this would probably impact your ability to transition back into a work routine smoothly. Do these decisions have longer-term negative consequences? If so, what can you do? You can wait it out and hope for better days. Or, like above, you can find a place that will let you and your team decide the best way to work and service clients.
Happy Labor Day
I genuinely hope that you are energized and executing your back-to-work routine. If the transition is not easy, please reach out and schedule a call with us! We are happy to discuss your situation and options for improvement. Or, if you would like some answers to questions you have, please fill out our confidential Q&A form so that we can give you the answers.