I had the honor and privilege of being able to represent Adaptive Solutions at ILTA’s Women Who Lead lunch in Atlanta. Over my 20+ years in legal technology, it is truly amazing to see the growth of women in the field and hear from many of the trail blazers. The knowledgeable panelists included:
- Susan Crisp, Senior Manager, Technology Innovation, King and Spalding
- Camille Reynolds, Senior Director of Knowledge and Innovation Delivery, Fenwick & West, LLP
- Elizabeth Satterfield, Director, Legal Project Management Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC
A theme the panelists discussed was that their careers were not planned in advance nor were they in a straight line. I could closely relate. Had you asked me right out of college what my career would entail, neither legal nor technology would have been in my response. But being open to opportunity, never saying no to an assignment, and following mentors that I felt I could learn from, has allowed me to join the C-Level in this rapidly changing and always interesting field.
The discussion provided several “Golden Nuggets” that can apply to anyone looking to advance their career:
- Schedule regular time to re-calibrate. Always evaluate where you are and where you want to be. Have a plan, but use the calibration to be flexible with your plan or even change it.
- Determine what keeps you grounded. It could be something different at work vs. at home and could change regularly. With the crazy pace of our jobs and our industry, always spend the time to stay grounded.
- Constantly look for opportunities – don’t wait to be tapped for a project, job, advice, etc. Be proactive.
- Ask, “How can I help you?”. This is especially true of those you supervise. This will show your ability and willingness to be a leader and a team player.
What struck me about the panel was their willingness to always try new things and to mentor and grow their staff.
Thanks to ILTA for a great session and thanks to the panelists for sharing their wisdom. I would like to publish a follow up blog with additional career advice. Please email me the best advice you have ever received – firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to the responses.