Thursday, October 23, 2014
Another One Bites the Dust
I'm back from a wonderful vacation in Italy with Daughter. As you can tell from the absence of blog posts, I took the opportunity to turn off. I didn't blog, read or answer emails (OK, one or two) or check in with the office. Aside from the incredibly horrible jetlag, I came back feeling great, with renewed energy and tons of potential blog posts. Yesterday, my first day back in the office, I found out that two of my absolutely favorite colleagues here in the Trenches are leaving the Trenches. One of them is leaving the practice of law entirely and the other is leaving the world of the Trenches for a different area of law. Why? They are burned out on family law. That makes three of my colleagues in the past year to leave Trenches life, two of them for lives outside the practice of law. Am I happy for them? Certainly. They are doing what makes them happy. At the same time, I am sad, because that means that at least one of them I won't ever see, and the other not much at all because she won't be litigating. I am also sad because the Trenches will be losing two of the good guys - lawyers who care what happens to their clients and are committed to their clients leaving the Trenches with a sustainable future for themselves and their families. That dwindles our numbers by two, and in my small community, two is a lot. What I don't see is folks coming in to take their place. There aren't a lot of new faces who pass Trenches muster, nor are there many younger faces coming up the ranks. Sure, it means more business for the rest of us, but that's not what I'm talking about here. I ran into one of the judge's bailiffs, and he put it perfectly: I'm talking about the difference between lawyers who work for their clients and those who work to earn the most from their clients. There's a difference, and you can see it five minutes into a litigated case.