Pro Bono Net Community  (Public)

Pro Bono Net is a national non-profit organization dedicated to increasing access to justice for the disadvantaged. Our website for lawyers, www.probono.net , promotes collaboration and makes it easier for pro bono attorneys to get involved, saving time... Read More
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Mike Mintz wrote on 14 Apr 2011 2:39 PM

Thanks for this post Lauren. The safety net factor extends to almost all workers at some point in their career. We all like to think that our job will provide the same level of comfort and security it has since we took it, that we will grow steadily and our salary will rise, and that things will never get too messy.

Screw that! As author Steven Pressfield says in The War of Art, it's usually the things we are most scared of doing that tell us what we should be doing. If we're not taking on risk as lawyers and legal professionals then we aren't growing. We aren't taking our careers by the horns and blazing a new trail to greater rewards (not always money) than the slow and steady path.

These few lines from your post summed it up for me: " Lawyers willing to take risks tend to get better outcomes for their clients.  Lawyers who are known for betting the farm have more leverage in settlement negotiations because opposing counsel doesn’t know whether the threat to go to trial is a bluff.  A willingness to take on matters that are new or frightening can lead to unexpected opportunities.  Lawyers who have a reputation for taking risks often get referred interesting high-stakes cases."

What stories do other people from the group have about taking risks in their career?