Monday, December 21, 2009

The Utter BS of Law Firms

I just saw this ABA article.

This sentiment completely sums up why I don't like job hunting & really hate typical law firms, most of which are bastions of conformity. I loved the one I worked at in Atlanta since many of my co-workers were anything BUT conformist robots; the legal clinic was also good since the big focus was helping our clients, not conforming to management's viewpoints. That's how things SHOULD be. Even my company works w/actors who don't have the same political views; one in particular gets some ribbing but he'd NEVER get rejected for a role b/c of who he voted for or his stance on some issue.

But often law firms do put more importance on people's viewpoints on issues instead of helping clients & diminish people's abilities in the process. You ALWAYS hear about this sort of thing in private law firms & big corporate employers.

It makes me feel that I have to lie about who I am. Why should working at your law firm require me to attend church, play/follow sports, laugh at your racist jokes, pretend I want to be barefoot & pregnant someday or otherwise be someone I'm not? Why should THAT diminish my actual abilities & skills?

I think job interviews are total bunk; according to psych studies, their predictability for how you'll perform on the job are 1%. 1%; did you get that???? People are ALWAYS on their best behavior, nervous & dressing plain, even if they wouldn't otherwise. They'll never tell you the truth & you won't find out about the skeletons until they're working at the job. I always feel fake at them, though being on the other side has been a great eye opener & I'd highly recommend doing it if you get the chance. They're never like ANY first date I went on, that's for sure.

For the places that don't quiz you on views outside the workplace or doing your job properly, hats off to you. If you make me feel comfortable being myself, then you are definitely doing something right.

Did some of these firms ever think that maybe they're opening themselves up to lawsuits on gender & racial discrimination? Maybe even 1st Amendment lawsuits when telling people who to vote for or what to believe? Now, if you have a rapport w/someone, great. I was a sorority member myself & common interests aren't a bad thing.

BUT....when an employer says "you weren't in this group/disagree with my views on race/health care/politics/whatever/don't practice an activity I practice so you're inferior/not worth hiring.", we've got a serious problem. This article sounds to me like firms want mini-mes. Honestly I don't get this obsession w/working for 7th grade gossips, which is exactly what a typical law firm partner sounds like. Who needs it?

1 comment:

  1. I agree, too that job interviews are total bunk! I hated the process. It was like being someone I was not. The place that hired me was a place where I felt like I could be myself.