Thursday, June 19, 2008

Escaping the legal profession is becoming its own business

How do you know that dissatisfaction with the legal profession has reached an all-time high? When helping lawyers leave the profession becomes its own cottage industry.

That may sound far-fetched, but it is not. (Former) lawyer Monica Parker in Atlanta, Georgia, has done just that in starting her own company – I recently talked with Monica about her company and the reasons for creating it.

“ is a business that helps unhappy lawyers find and pursue fulfilling work outside of the law. What inspired its creation was my own experience practicing law. Despite working at great firms, I was miserable because I wasn’t engaged in my work or using my talents. I longed for someone to help me find a way out of the law and into work I loved. Working with my own coach to make an escape, I discovered that I wanted to help others in the same predicament I was in. So I launched”

Not only has Monica started her own coaching business, she has also written a book on the subject of leaving the law, the soon-to-be-published book, “The Unhappy Lawyer: A Roadmap to Finding Meaningful Work Outside of the Law” (Sourcebooks, September 2008). This book is an action guide containing lots of self-assessments to help guide the reader in the transition process. Lawyers are excellent problem solvers, Monica said, but it is hard for us to make decisions for ourselves.

Not everyone completely leaves the law, Monica acknowledges. “Doing freelance law is a terrific option for a number of my clients. They get to use their legal skills and work on short-term projects that give them the flexibility to pursue owning their own business, volunteer work, and just spending time doing things that they enjoy, like traveling, spending time with family, etc.”

Monica had some very direct advice for legal professionals considering changing their career, something that I wholeheartedly agree with - “Stop waiting for permission to make a change.” I add, “just do it!”

If you are interested in pre-ordering Monica’s book, link to Book Resources Page on the right.

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