Thriving in Your Legal Career – Be a Dynamo

Thrive in your Legal CareerIt’s time we took a look at the characteristics of dynamos – those people who are just nailing their legal careers, constantly growing, and scoring goals at every opportunity.

Not too long ago I wrote about “cruisers”.  You know – those people who are just content with where they are at, and have no desire to change or improve anything?  Well, that’s not what we should be aiming for as young lawyers.  In reality, it’s the antithesis of what we should be aiming for.

As before, the principles I’m discussing today are distilled from David Maister’s book “True Professionalism” which I thoroughly recommend you take a look at.

Dynamos are Headed Somewhere in their Career

Dynamos are people who are in the middle of their legal career, not at the end.  They are working towards fulfilling a plan, and always know where they are going.  They are not “stuck” or “content” with their current position, seeing it more as a stepping stone to the next place.

Dynamos are Constantly Learning

Dynamos are always working to learn something new, and continually add to their skills and knowledge.

They understand that if they don’t keep up a habit of constant improvement they will fall behind in the blink of an eye.

Dynamos are Always Improving

Along with learning, but not identical to it, is improvement.  Dynamos are constantly looking to improve their current skills.

How is this different from learning?  Well, a cruiser might have the necessary knowledge to do something, but simply choose not to implement it.

A dynamo on the other hand will always be looking for opportunities to ensure that they are doing better at something today than they were yesterday.  This takes not just the acquisition of new knowledge and skill, but also the strategy needed to develop new habits and implement them into life.

Dynamos Take On Challenges

Most lawyers don’t have too much of a problem with this, but some people shy away from taking responsibility.  Dynamos, however, want that responsibility, they want the challenge, they enjoy the tough projects – because all of these things are an opportunity to learn, improve and grow.

Dynamos are the people who put their hand up for the jobs that need to be done, but others are afraid of.

So What are You?

Are you a dynamo?  Don’t just say yes for that nice feeling of self-delusion that accompanies such statements.

What evidence is there that you are a dynamo in your legal career?  Do you meet these criteria, or have some others which demonstrate your constant endeavours towards active career development and self-improvement?

Let me know in the comments below what other characteristics you think dynamos might have.

Happy Lawyering