Celebrating 10 years! 2007-2017

i just want to work

i come to the office, i work, i leave. but one my higher ups legalbeagle07/12/17
I don't particularly like working with or interacting with l hairypalms07/12/17
Suck it up and play the game. You're an employee and you isthisit07/12/17
This is pretty accurate. It depends on your job. I am not a kramer71607/12/17
"Once my probation ended I stopped going to the bars." Th onehell07/12/17
Does your firm have Asian clients? You might want to move t sanka07/12/17
Wow, this is great. I must have secret Japanese genes somewh wolfman07/12/17
You should work at my office. We sit on the phone with oppos vohod07/12/17
Sitting for too long can and will kill you. That said, get u lawyer207/12/17
You sound kind of anti-social. Like it or not, if you want t tcpaul07/12/17
"those who socialize the least are the first to get let go." onehell07/13/17
They can't talk about you when you're in the room. Who do y doublefriedchicken07/12/17
Life is too short not to socialize at work. I happen to be c trollfeeder07/13/17
Depends on how valuable you are to your firm. I'm in the sam bucwild07/13/17
This. Sucking up to your boss and direct staff is important attorneyinct07/18/17
You need to relax. Being likeable often leaves a better impr confused1l9307/13/17
legalbeagle (Jul 12, 2017 - 2:27 pm)

i come to the office, i work, i leave. but one my higher ups seems bothered that i dont socialize with other attorneys. i only discuss work matters as I am not interested in developing a "friendship" with people who are insincere and untrustworthy. i hear how they speak of others (the staff) and themselves and i find it toxic.

so do i have to suck it up and mingle?

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hairypalms (Jul 12, 2017 - 2:57 pm)

I don't particularly like working with or interacting with lawyers either, but it comes with the job. If you are working at a firm, the social part comes with the job. If you do not care to adopt the firm culture, your longevity at the firm may be diminished. I hate politics as well, but attend the events, and look for an early exit without being too noticeable.

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isthisit (Jul 12, 2017 - 2:58 pm)

Suck it up and play the game.

You're an employee and you're very expendable.

The better engrained you are with the culture and people you work with, the bigger your social capital. And as you make friends with the partners and senior staff, the more political capital you'll accumulate.

Social and political capital in the workplace = long term success.

If you want to just work than become a staff attorney.

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kramer716 (Jul 12, 2017 - 3:36 pm)

This is pretty accurate. It depends on your job. I am not a drinker, so didn't really like hanging out after work at the bar scene. I loved my co-workers, but I hate bars with a passion. Having said that while I was on my six-month probation, I went out every weekend and hung out with everyone, once my probation ended I stopped going to the bars.

Lucky for me I had a government job where once you get past the six months, you cannot be fired unless you do something egregious. If I am working for a private firm, and I have no real job security, then I will do whatever to not rock the boat.

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onehell (Jul 12, 2017 - 5:34 pm)

"Once my probation ended I stopped going to the bars."

That sentence is hilarious when taken out of context.

And it's almost as amusing in-context: Lawyers are such a bunch of drunks that you have to pretend to be one yourself just to stay employed. This profession is so toxic sometimes you have to laugh just to keep from crying.

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sanka (Jul 12, 2017 - 3:13 pm)

Does your firm have Asian clients? You might want to move to a federal Equal Employment Opportunity job for teetotaler respect.

Why getting drunk is so important in Japanese business relations

http://www.businessinsider.com/getting-drunk-in-japan-business-deals-2015-2

Many people from task-based cultures don't get it. "Why would I risk making a fool of myself in front of the very people I need to impress?" they wonder. But that is exactly the point. When you share a round of drinks with a business partner, you show that person you have nothing to hide. And when they "drink until they fall down" with you, they show you that they are willing to let their guard down completely. "Don't worry about looking stupid," Hiroki reassured our German manager, who had begun wringing his hands nervously. "The more you are willing to remove social barriers in the evening, the more they will see you as trustworthy."

Alcohol is not the only way to build a business relationship. If you don't drink, you can certainly find other ways to partake in the fun; in Japan, a round of karaoke or a trip to the spa can do wonders. And in Arab cultures, where alcohol is avoided, you can forget beer and relax instead over a cup of tea.

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wolfman (Jul 12, 2017 - 3:42 pm)

Wow, this is great. I must have secret Japanese genes somewhere. I don't really like or trust people, at least other guys, unless they and I have gotten drunk, slept with sluts (or at least tried to pick some up) and sang silly songs together, preferably all three. I mean, I can get on and talk sports or whatnot fine with people I just know from work, but for them to be my friends/trusted associates, we have to party together (and I don't even particularly like drinking as an activity in itself).

Interestingly enough, I rather like most lawyers I work with (I work for the gubmint. so might be a different atmosphere than private practice), but we don't really go out together (not that kind of an office).

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vohod (Jul 12, 2017 - 3:45 pm)

You should work at my office. We sit on the phone with opposing parties alot but no one talks to each other. The owner of my firm is here 11 hours a day and speaks to no one except 1 senior associate.

You need to find a place that shares your mercenary values.

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lawyer2 (Jul 12, 2017 - 4:37 pm)

Sitting for too long can and will kill you. That said, get up periodically and make laps around the office and socialize as a byproduct. I do it everyday and I enjoy it, even though I don't personally like some of the people I socialize with.
I can tell you from experience, not very many people like people who don't talk to people. Maybe it's other folks insecurities, but those who socialize the least, are the first to get let go. Send out a funny email to everyone periodically. Stop being a recluse!

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tcpaul (Jul 12, 2017 - 5:11 pm)

You sound kind of anti-social. Like it or not, if you want to succeed in an office environment you have to play the game a little. Besides, work is more enjoyable when you build genuine relationships with co-workers. I think you should try to open up a little. If your boss is telling you that he is concerned about this it could be a warning that you need to try to fit in better. I work with an attorney that is socially awkward and doesn't play the game. I like him because I like anti-social people. But I know that his behavior hurts his status in the office.

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onehell (Jul 13, 2017 - 3:59 pm)

"those who socialize the least are the first to get let go."

Yup. And this is a particularly American value. There is a book about introverts called "Quiet" which talks about how many other cultures find us to be a bunch of boorish blowhards and can't understand why we venerate those qualities so much.

But like it or not, our society is one in which introversion (or even worse, shyness) is practically seen as a disease. Look at a radio talk show: The talking head just shouts down the egghead professor guest, and most people will see that as the blowhard host "winning" the argument. Confidence is a proxy for competence in our society, and confident people don't keep to themselves.

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doublefriedchicken (Jul 12, 2017 - 5:19 pm)

They can't talk about you when you're in the room. Who do you think they are talking about?

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trollfeeder (Jul 13, 2017 - 3:46 pm)

Life is too short not to socialize at work. I happen to be close with my co workers, and it makes collaborations easy.

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bucwild (Jul 13, 2017 - 4:48 pm)

Depends on how valuable you are to your firm. I'm in the same position you are- I work hard, do great work, and I'm cordial to my coworkers. However, I don't waste a lot of time socializing and I certainly don't consider them friends. My bosses have I suggested be more social and "visible". But at the end of the day, I bill more than the other associates, have more clients than them, and am definitely closer to making partner than any of them. And, I'm the only one who gets to leave at 5 and take with a straight face because I'm the first one in the office every morning and I work non stop during the day. On top of that, I heard one of the most social/slacker associates was told to resign. So yeah I'll continue ignoring them.

You have to figure out what's really needed to succeed at your firm.

Edit: I am VERY social with my boss and direct staff. I need them to get along w/ me and trust me. I take my staff out to lunch regularly. But sociazling with them gives a direct and tangible benefit to me. I don't see the benefit of goofing off with other associates.

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attorneyinct (Jul 18, 2017 - 3:26 pm)

This. Sucking up to your boss and direct staff is important if you want to get ahead. Being sociable to other associates is meh.

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confused1l93 (Jul 13, 2017 - 5:11 pm)

You need to relax. Being likeable often leaves a better impression on people than the quality of your work. It's legal work, not rocket science.

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