1st Year Anxieties

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1st Year Anxieties

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Nov 14, 2016 7:25 pm

I'm a first year associate at a big law firm, working in corporate. Today, for the first time since I started, I missed a relatively important detail in one of my assignments. It was caught by the partner and the senior associate and I corrected/reprinted the documents, but I still remain paranoid that this will make me look like I lack attention to detail. FWIW, it's a partner that I've worked with several times in the past, and I've never had an issue with him. Should I be worried about my job? Or is this normal for a new associate?

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Re: 1st Year Anxieties

Postby TheSpanishMain » Mon Nov 14, 2016 7:32 pm

My BigLaw experience is limited to an SA, but my sense is that if these types of mistakes meant that the first year got canned, there would be virtually no second year associates. I'm sure you're fine.

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Re: 1st Year Anxieties

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:21 pm

Lol I've made a mistake like this in not just one project, but literally every single project that I have done. That's why you have multiple people looking at documents before they go out to the client, opposing counsel, or court.


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Re: 1st Year Anxieties

Postby shock259 » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:40 pm

Welcome to your chosen career. You will have moments of fleeting confidence followed by regular periods of "oh shit". You can take solace in the fact that as a junior (1) someone else is always truly accountable to the client and (2) you are never really given enough rope to hang yourself with. For now, at least. Enjoy it while it lasts.

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Re: 1st Year Anxieties

Postby Abbie Doobie » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:44 pm

is normal. be vigilant about mistakes, be aware that you'll get chewed out sometimes for them, and be aware that this happens to everybody. your goal should be to not repeat the same mistakes. that is when people truly get pissed. thank

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Re: 1st Year Anxieties

Postby 2014 » Mon Nov 14, 2016 8:55 pm

Happens all of the time, anyone who suggests it has never happened to them isn't being candid. You are right to be concerned about your reputation though, it doesn't take too many instances of sloppiness (even if it seems justified under the circumstances at the time) for someone to lose faith in you which leads to a host of bad consequences.

Don't beat yourself up too bad though, just be mindful in the future of trying to limit your mistakes to ones that are a product of your inexperience rather than a product of sloppiness or not dedicating time to proofing/polishing.


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Re: 1st Year Anxieties

Postby fxb3 » Tue Nov 15, 2016 8:07 pm

You're expected to make mistakes. To learn from them, to take them seriously, and not repeat them -- but to still make them. So just breathe, and keep at it. You're doing fine.

Far worse is to be the senior associate who doesn't catch the mistakes that people like you are making. When I was a first and second-year associate, I thought I made way more money than I deserved and that it was crazy that senior associates got paid so much more. Now that I am a senior associate, I think the money isn't nearly enough for the stress and responsibility that's sometimes thrown at me.

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