Thursday, August 27, 2015
As mentioned in my post about law schools hiring in business law areas, we received the following posting from The University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law.
University of Utah Hiring in Business and Tax Law
The University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position at the rank of associate professor beginning academic year 2016-2017. Qualifications for the position include a record of excellence in academics, successful teaching experience or potential as a teacher, and strong scholarly distinction or promise. The College is particularly interested in candidates in the areas of business and tax law. Interested persons can submit an application to the University of Utah Human Resources website at https://utah.peopleadmin.com/postings/43173 (please note that the application requires a cover letter, CV, and list of references). Baiba Hicks, Administrative Assistant to the Faculty Appointments Committee (Baiba.email@example.com or 801-581-5464) is available to answer questions.
The University of Utah is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer and educator and its policies prohibit discrimination on the basis of race, national origin, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, religion, age, status as a person with a disability, or veteran’s status. Minorities, women, veterans, and those with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply. Veterans’ preference is extended to qualified veterans. To inquire further about the University’s nondiscrimination and affirmative action policies or to request a reasonable accommodation for a disability in the application process, please contact the following individual who has been designated as the University’s Title IX/ADA/Section 504 Coordinator: Director, Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action, 201 South Presidents Circle, Rm. 135, Salt Lake City, UT 84112, (801)581-8365, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Monday, August 24, 2015
Belmont University (Massey College of Business) Professor Position - Healthcare Management/Health Law
Belmont University's Massey College of Business (my employer) has an open Assistant Professor of Management position that may interest some of our readers.
As stated below, a PHD in Management and/or a JD is required. Healthcare management expertise is strongly preferred. The recently retired professor whose line we are filling was a JD, MBA, RN with significant healthcare management and health law experience. I am not on the hiring committee, but am happy to discuss Belmont University in general, and I can point interested parties in the right direction.
The online application can be accessed here.
The College of Business Administration at Belmont University is seeking applications for a tenure-track faculty position at the rank of Assistant Professor beginning August 2015.
The faculty member in this position will teach both graduate and undergraduate management classes. The area of specialization/certification that will be given preference for this position is healthcare management. Ability and willingness to teach healthcare law, patient-centered care, business law, principles of management, and/or strategic management is preferred. Clinical experience or familiarity with the clinical setting will be looked upon quite favorably, as well. Candidates should be able to demonstrate a well-developed research agenda with promise of publishing in high quality, peer reviewed management or business law journals.
An interest and/or experience in engaging students in undergraduate research will be considered favorably, as will teaching experience at the university level. Completion of a Ph.D. in management from an AACSB or CAHME accredited/AUPHA member institution by the time of employment is required. A Doctorate of Jurisprudence (JD) is also acceptable. Belmont University is particularly seeking applicants who can demonstrate the interest and ability to work collaboratively in course design and to teach interdisciplinary and topical courses in this program.
Belmont University seeks to attract and retain highly qualified faculty and staff that share the University’s values and will contribute to its mission and vision to be a leader among teaching universities bringing together the best of liberal arts and professional education in a Christian community of learning and service. For additional information about the position and to complete the online application, candidates are directed to https://jobs.belmont.edu. During the application process, applicants will be asked to respond to Belmont’s mission, vision, and values statements, articulating how the candidate’s knowledge, experience, and beliefs have prepared him/her to contribute to a Christian community of learning and service and give a brief statement of teaching philosophy. An electronic version of a Cover Letter, Curriculum Vitae, List of References, Teaching Philosophy, and a Response to Belmont’s Mission, Vision, and Values must be attached in order to complete the online application. Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled.
A comprehensive, coeducational university located in Nashville, Tennessee, Belmont is among the fastest growing Christian universities in the nation. Ranked No. 5 in the Regional Universities South category and named for the seventh consecutive year as one of the top “Up-and-Comer” universities by U.S. News & World Report, Belmont University consists of approximately 7,300 students who come from every state and 25 countries. The university’s purpose is to help students explore their passions and develop their talents to meet the world’s needs. With more than 75 areas of study, 20 master’s programs and four doctoral degrees, there is no limit to the ways Belmont University can expand an individual's horizon.
Belmont University is an equal opportunity employer committed to fostering a diverse learning community of committed Christians from all racial and ethnic backgrounds. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply. The selected candidate for this position will be required to complete a background check satisfactory to the University.
Tuesday, August 11, 2015
THE UNIVERSITY OF IOWA COLLEGE OF LAW anticipates hiring several tenured/tenure track faculty members and clinical faculty members (including a director for field placement program) over the coming year. Our goal is to find outstanding scholars and teachers who can extend the law school’s traditional strengths and intellectual breadth. We are interested in all persons of high academic achievement and promise with outstanding credentials. Appointment and rank will be commensurate with qualifications and experience. Candidates should send resumes, references, and descriptions of areas of interest to: Faculty Appointments Committee, College of Law, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1113.
THE UNIVERSITY OF IOWA is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. All qualified applicants are encouraged to apply and will receive consideration for employment free from discrimination on the basis of race, creed, color, national origin, age, sex, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, religion, associational preference, status as a qualified individual with a disability, or status as a protected veteran.
Friday, August 7, 2015
From an e-mail I received earlier today:
University of South Carolina School of Law
The University of South Carolina School of Law invites applications for tenured, tenure-track, or visiting faculty positions to begin fall semester 2016. Candidates should have a juris doctorate or equivalent degree. Additionally, a successful applicant should have a record of excellence in academia or in practice, the potential to be an outstanding teacher, and demonstrable scholarly promise. Although the School of Law is especially interested in candidates who are qualified to teach in the areas of taxation, clinical legal education, environmental law and small business, we are equally interested in candidates who can contribute to the diversity of our law school community whose teaching interests may fall outside of these areas.
Interested persons should send a resume, references, and subject area preferences to Prof. Eboni Nelson, Chair, Faculty Selection Committee, c/o Kim Fanning, University of South Carolina School of Law, 701 S. Main St., Columbia, SC 29208 or, by email, to HIRE2016@LAW.SC.EDU (electronic The University of South Carolina is committed to a diverse faculty, staff, and student body. We encourage applications from women, minorities, persons with disabilities, and others whose background, experience, and viewpoints contribute to the diversity of our institution. The University of South Carolina is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the base of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, genetics, sexual orientation, gender, or veteran status.
Earlier I posted a list of business schools hiring in legal studies.
Feel free to send me any additions or leave additions in the comments.
Updated Sept. 1, 2015
- Boston U.
- British Columbia (Canada)
- North Carolina
- Queen's U. (Canada)
- Roger Williams
- Soongsil (South Korea)
- South Carolina
- Texas A&M
- Touro (visiting prof.)
- UMass (Clinical + Business Orgs.)
- Wake Forest (Business Law Clinic)
- West Virginia (Business & Entrepreneurship Clinic)
*Schools that have not listed any preferences, or that have provided open-ended language after preferences that do not include business law, are not included in this list. Also, given that I do not have access to the AALS ads, this list is likely incomplete and only includes schools that have posted their open positions online.
For the purposes of this post, I include the following subject areas in the definition of "business law": banking; business associations; corporate finance; corporate governance; financial institutions; international business transactions; law & economics; law & entrepreneurship; M&A; securities regulation; unincorporated entities .
Wednesday, August 5, 2015
I received this position posting today via e-mail (emphasis added):
The University of Maryland School of Law invites applications for a tenure-track faculty position to teach in the area of business law, potentially including an appropriate combination of the following courses: Business Associations, Corporate Finance, Secured Transactions, along with other core classes in the business curriculum. We will consider both entry level and lateral candidates. The University of Maryland has a strong commitment to diversity. We welcome applications from persons of color, women, and other members of historically disadvantaged groups. Contact: Professor Leigh Goodmark, University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law, 500 W. Baltimore Street, Baltimore, MD 21201. Email: email@example.com. Phone: (410) 706-3549.
The University of Maryland, Baltimore is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.
Minorities, women, veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply.
I am not sure if we have any readers with doctorates in accounting, but, if so, see the hiring announcement from Eastern Illinois University below. I have included this announcement because they are also considering applicants with a J.D. and a CPA or LLM (or other masters) in tax.
Eastern Illinois University invites applicants for two 9-month tenure track positions at the Assistant level in Accountancy. The positions begin in Fall 2016 and hiring will ultimately depend on the availability of funding. Evidence of strong instructional effectiveness is essential as are strong communication and interpersonal skills. Demonstrated commitment to diversity and experience with promoting inclusive excellence is required. The successful candidate will also be expected to provide evidence (or potential) to engage in related research and service activities. Professional certification, business experience, and experience or willingness to teach in an online format are desirable.
For one position, a PhD or DBA in Accountancy, or a JD with CPA or specialized masters’ in tax, is preferred, although ABDs close to completion will be considered. Candidate should possess expertise and teaching experience in Tax and a secondary area such as managerial, governmental & not-for-profit, accounting information systems, or audit.
For the second position, a PhD or DBA in Accountancy is preferred, although ABDs close to completion will be considered. Candidates should possess expertise and teaching experience in Managerial Accounting. An interest in teaching in a secondary area such as governmental & not-for-profit, or accounting information systems is desirable.
Dr. Denise Smith, Chair of the Search Committee, will be interviewing during the American Accounting Association Annual Meeting in August 2015. All applicants must submit a letter of interest, a current curriculum vita, evidence of teaching effectiveness, and names and contact information (including phone numbers and email addresses) for three references. Applications for the tax accounting position must be submitted electronically to Interfolio at apply.interfolio.com/30692 while application for the managerial accounting position must be submitted electronically to Interfolio at apply.interfolio.com/30734.
Finalists will be asked to provide transcripts. Review of all applications will begin on September 2, 2015, and will continue until all campus interviews are scheduled.
Eastern Illinois University is a public university that places priority on teaching excellence for a student body in a rural setting. Eastern is consistently named one of the top Midwestern public universities in our class by U.S. News & World Report. Approximately 9,000 students are enrolled in undergraduate and graduate programs. Charleston is located in east central Illinois and combines the benefits of a community of 20,000 with access to several large cities, including Chicago, St. Louis, and Indianapolis. The University is accredited by North Central Association of Colleges and Schools. The School of Business and the Accountancy Program are fully accredited by AACSB International. The School of Business offers six undergraduate majors, eight minors, and an MBA. There are approximately 1,100 declared undergraduate business majors and 100 MBA degree candidates. For more information about the School of Business and the university, visit this web site: http://www.eiu.edu/business/.
Eastern Illinois University is an Affirmative Action/ Equal Opportunity Employer – minority/female/disability/veteran – committed to achieving a diverse community.
Tuesday, August 4, 2015
The following position posting was provided to us via e-mail:
RUTGERS UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF LAW (CAMDEN CAMPUS) invites applications from entry-level and lateral candidates for one or more tenure-track or tenured faculty positions. Possible areas of particular interest include, but are not limited to, corporate law, corporate governance, commercial law, securities regulation, and other areas of business law. We will consider candidates with an interest in building upon our newly devised Certificate Program in Corporate/Business Law. All applicants should have a distinguished academic background and either great promise or a record of excellence in both scholarship and teaching. We encourage applications from women, people of color, persons with disabilities, and others whose background, experience, and viewpoints would contribute to the diversity of our faculty. Contact: Professor Arthur Laby, Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee; Rutgers University School of Law; 217 North Fifth Street; Camden, NJ; 08102; firstname.lastname@example.org. Rutgers University is committed to a policy of equal opportunity for all in every aspect of its operations.
Monday, August 3, 2015
My law school, the University of Nebraska, is hiring. Here are the details:
Entry-Level or Experienced Faculty Position
The UNIVERSITY OF NEBRASKA COLLEGE OF LAW invites applications for entry-level and lateral candidates for one or more tenure-track or tenured faculty positions. Our curricular needs include Business Associations, Evidence, Wills and Trusts, and Civil Procedure. Other needs include courses related to
- Criminal Law (e.g., Federal Criminal Law or White Collar Crime, Criminal Procedure 2, PostConviction Remedies, or Criminal Sentencing);
- Health Care (e.g., Federal Regulation of Health Care Providers, Health Care Finance, Torts, Administrative Law, Medical Malpractice, Privacy Law, Law and Medicine, Public Health Law, Bioethics and the Law, and the Law of Provider and Patient);
- Litigation Skills and Related Courses (e.g., Trial Advocacy, Civil Rights Litigation, Pretrial Litigation or other litigation skills courses, Conflicts of Laws);
- Business Law (e.g., Corporate Finance, Corporate Governance, Insurance Law, Bankruptcy, Corporate Restructuring, Nonprofit Organizations, Risk Management / Compliance, or White Collar Crime);
- Patent Law and International Intellectual Property;
- Family Law;
- Education Law; and
- Election Law.
Minimum Required Qualifications: J.D Degree or Equivalent, Superior Academic Record, Demonstrated Interest in Relevant Substantive Areas. Title of Asst/Assoc/or Full Professor will be based on qualifications of applicant. Please fill out the University application, which can be found at http://employment.unl.edu/postings/45473, and upload a CV, a cover letter, and a list of references. General information about the Law College is available at http://law.unl.edu/. The University of Nebraska-Lincoln is committed to a pluralistic campus community through affirmative action, equal opportunity, work-life balance, and dual careers. Review of applications will begin on August 20, 2015, and continue until the position is filled. Contact Associate Dean Richard Moberly, Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee, University of Nebraska College of Law, Lincoln, NE 68583-0902, or send an email to email@example.com.
Civil Clinical Position
The UNIVERSITY OF NEBRASKA COLLEGE OF LAW invites applications for entry-level and lateral candidates for a tenure-track faculty position to teach in its Civil Clinic. The position may also include teaching a classroom law school course on evidence, pretrial litigation, trial advocacy, or related subjects. In Fall 2016, Nebraska Law will open a new, state-of-the-art clinic building to house all of its clinics together.
Minimum Required Qualifications: J.D Degree or Equivalent, Superior Academic Record, Demonstrated Interest in Relevant Substantive Areas. Title of Asst/Assoc/or Full Clinical Professor will be based on qualifications of applicant. General information about the Law College is available at http://law.unl.edu/. Please fill out the University application, which can be found at http://employment.unl.edu/postings/45475, and upload a CV, a cover letter, and a list of references. The University of Nebraska‑Lincoln is committed to a pluralistic campus community through affirmative action, equal opportunity, work-life balance, and dual careers. Review of applications will begin on August 20, 2015 and continue until the position is filled. Contact Associate Dean Richard Moberly, Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee, University of Nebraska College of Law, Lincoln, NE 68583-0902, or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I'm not on our Appointments Committee, but feel free to contact me if you have any questions, particularly about our business law needs.
Saturday, August 1, 2015
As you may have seen elsewhere already (but just to make it abundantly clear):
THE UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE COLLEGE OF LAW invites applications from both entry-level and lateral candidates for as many as two full-time, tenure-track faculty positions to commence in the Fall Semester 2016. The College is particularly interested in the subject areas of business law, including business associations and contracts; gratuitous transfers/trusts and estates; and health law. Other areas of interest include legal writing, torts, and property.
A J.D. or equivalent law degree is required. Successful applicants must have a strong academic background. Significant professional experience is desirable. Candidates also must have a strong commitment to excellence in teaching, scholarship, and service.
In furtherance of the University’s and the College’s fundamental commitment to diversity among our faculty, students body, and staff, we strongly encourage applications from people of color, persons with disabilities, women, and others whose background, experience, and viewpoints would contribute to a diverse law school environment.
The Faculty Appointments Committee will interview applicants who are registered in the 2015 Faculty Appointments Register of the Association of American Law Schools at the AALS Faculty Recruitment Conference in Washington, D.C. Applicants who are not registered in the AALS Faculty Appointments Register are advised to send a letter of interest, resume, and the names and contact information of three references by September 30, 2015 to:
On behalf of Becky Jacobs and Michael Higdon
Co-Chairs, Faculty Appointments Committee
The University of Tennessee College of Law
1505 W. Cumberland Avenue
Knoxville, TN 37996-1810
All qualified applicants will receive equal consideration for employment and admissions without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, pregnancy, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, physical or mental disability, or covered veteran status. Eligibility and other terms and conditions of employment benefits at The University of Tennessee are governed by laws and regulations of the State of Tennessee, and this non-discrimination statement is intended to be consistent with those laws and regulations. In accordance with the requirements of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, The University of Tennessee affirmatively states that it does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, or disability in its education programs and activities, and this policy extends to employment by the University. Inquiries and charges of violation of Title VI (race, color, and national origin), Title IX (sex), Section 504 (disability), ADA (disability), Age Discrimination in Employment Act (age), sexual orientation, or veteran status should be directed to the Office of Equity and Diversity (OED), 1840 Melrose Avenue, Knoxville, TN 37996-3560, telephone (865) 974-2498. Requests for accommodation of a disability should be directed to the ADA Coordinator at the Office of Equity and Diversity.
I hope a number of our readers will be interested in applying. Feel free to contact me if you have questions or need more information (although please note that I am not on the Faculty Appointments Committee).
Thursday, July 23, 2015
TEXAS A&M UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF LAW seeks to expand its academic program and its strong commitment to scholarship by hiring multiple exceptional faculty candidates for tenure-track or tenured positions, with rank dependent on qualifications and experience. Candidates must have a J.D. degree or its equivalent. Preference will be given to those with demonstrated outstanding scholarly achievement and strong classroom teaching skills. Successful candidates will be expected to teach and engage in research and service. While the law school welcomes applications in all subject areas, it particularly invites applications from:
1) Candidates who are interested in building synergies with Texas A&M University’s Mays Business School, with an emphasis on scholars engaged in international business law who focus on cross-border transactions, trade, and economic law (finance, investments, dispute resolution, etc.);
2) Candidates who are interested in building synergies with the broad mission of Texas A&M University’s College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, which include but are not limited to scholars engaged in agricultural law (including regulatory issues surrounding agriculture), rural law, community development law, food law, ecosystem sciences, and forensic evidence; and
3) Visionary leaders in experiential education interested in guiding our existing Intellectual Property and Technology Law Clinic (with concentrations in both trademarks and patents), Entrepreneurship Law Clinic, Family Law and Benefits Clinic, Employment Mediation Clinic, Wills & Estates Clinic, Innocence Clinic, Externship Program, Equal Justice/Pro Bono Program, and Advocacy Program, with a particular emphasis on candidates who may have an interest in participating in our Intellectual Property and Technology Law Clinic or developing an Immigration Law Clinic.
Texas A&M University is a tier one research institution and American Association of Universities member. The university consists of 16 colleges and schools that collectively rank among the top 20 higher education institutions nationwide in terms of research and development expenditures. As part of its commitment to continue building on its tradition of excellence in scholarship, teaching, and public service, Texas A&M acquired the law school from Texas Wesleyan University in August of 2013. Since that time, the law school has embarked on a program of investment that increased its entering class credentials and financial aid budgets, while shrinking the class size; hired eleven new faculty members, including nine prominent lateral hires; improved its physical facility; and substantially increased its career services, admissions, and student services staff.
Texas A&M School of Law is located in the heart of downtown Fort Worth, one of the largest and fastest growing cities in the country. The Fort Worth/Dallas area, with a total population in excess of six million people, offers a low cost of living, a strong economy, and access to world-class museums, restaurants, entertainment, and outdoor activities.
As an Equal Opportunity Employer, Texas A&M welcomes applications from a broad spectrum of qualified individuals who will enhance the rich diversity of the university’s academic community. Applicants should email a résumé and cover letter indicating research and teaching interests to Professor Timothy Mulvaney, Chair of the Faculty Appointments Committee, at email@example.com. Alternatively, résumés can be mailed to Professor Mulvaney at Texas A&M University School of Law, 1515 Commerce Street, Fort Worth, Texas 76102-6509.
Wednesday, July 22, 2015
The following comes to us from Dorothy Brown, Vice Provost for Academic Affairs & Professor of Law at Emory University School of Law:
We are conducting searches in two areas: health law and business law. We are looking for a senior health law scholar with a national reputation in health care regulation who is interested in helping to build a multidisciplinary health law, policy & management center, in cooperation with other Emory divisions including our School of Medicine, School of Public Health, and the nearby Center for Disease Control. In addition, we are looking for a junior (no more than 2-3 years of teaching experience) in Business law. Please feel free to contact me [at firstname.lastname@example.org] if you are interested or know of others who might be interested in being considered.
Monday, July 20, 2015
The University of Georgia's Terry College of Business has posted information about a legal studies lecturer position they are seeking to fill this fall.
I know UGA's legal studies faculty, and they have a bright, collegial group. Also, UGA's current president, Jere Morehead, previously taught legal studies courses in UGA's Terry College of Business.
More information about the position, provided by UGA, is available after the break.
Friday, July 10, 2015
Like last year, I am going to compile postings of legal studies professor positions in business schools. Perhaps, it is more accurate to say "not in law schools," as some of these positions may be in political science departments and the like.
For this list, I am only including full-time positions (tenure-track, clinical, visiting, or full-time instructor positions) that start in the fall of 2016. Feel free to send me any relevant positions to post. I will update the list from time to time. [Updated 9/2/15]
Thursday, July 2, 2015
The Kelley School of Business at Indiana University has multiple open positions in their Business Law and Ethics Department.
Kelley is well known in business school circles for having a strong legal studies program. Among the many fine faculty members are my ALSB mentor Jamie Prenkert (department chair) and BLPB guest-blogger Todd Haugh.
Information about these positions is available after the break.
Thursday, June 25, 2015
In my final post on the subject of “respectability” of lawyers (the first four can be found here, here, here and here), I’d like to tie my thoughts together, discussing what the various parties can do to make Bird and Orozco’s thesis of assimilation of lawyers into corporate business teams the “new normal”. This should give lawyers more career opportunities in the future, slow the loss of influence of the legal profession in businesses, and make legal education a more attractive choice. Much of the discussion in academia has ignored the in-house counsel approach as being a viable option for the woes of the legal industry. Below the fold, this post will discuss the roles that academia, in-house counsel, and business firms each may play in increasing the potential for success of a new model for business lawyers.
Friday, May 29, 2015
Earlier this month, The Tennessean reported that the state of Tennessee approved $8 million of incentives for the fourth season of ABC's show Nashville. The city of Nashville also plans to chip in about $500,000. According to the article, the "show spends about $20 million each season on local labor."
Economic incentives seem to be increasingly common, but this arrangement is interesting for a few reasons. First, this is an arrangement that not only brings jobs to town, but also brings publicity and tourists. Second, the lion share of the incentives appear to be coming from the state, but the lion share of the benefits seem to be directed at the city of Nashville - causing some in other parts of the state to complain.
Some businesses, like the Bluebird Cafe, are featured regularly on the show, and I wonder whether they pay for that privilege. I don't think they do, but have not been able to find out for sure.
My wife and I watch the show, if only because we like seeing our city on TV. Nashville is a wonderful place, has been called an "it city" and the "south's red hot town." Even the New York Times did a glowing article on the city Nashville during the tenure of ABC's show. The job market and real estate are both booming in Nashville.
I don't know how much of this success, if any, is due to the show about Nashville, but things do seem to be going well here...except for the increasing traffic. Product placement has been on the rise in media for some time now; perhaps we will see more city, state, and business placement over time.
Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Last month, Ovul Sezer, Francesca Gino, and Michael I. Norton of Harvard Business School posted Humblebragging: A Distinct – And Ineffective – Self-Presentation Strategy to SSRN (available here).
Here is the full article abstract:Humblebragging – bragging masked by a complaint – is a distinct and, given the rise of social media, increasingly ubiquitous form of self-promotion. We show that although people often choose to humblebrag when motivated to make a good impression, it is an ineffective self-promotional strategy. Five studies offer both correlational and causal evidence that humblebragging has both global costs – reducing liking and perceived sincerity – and specific costs: it is even ineffective in signaling the specific trait that that a person wants to promote. Moreover, humblebragging is less effective than simply complaining, because complainers are at least seen as sincere. Despite people’s belief that combining bragging and complaining confers the benefits of both self-promotion strategies, humblebragging fails to pay off.
Although the authors accurately explain that humblebragging is "bragging masked by a complaint," I am partial to the Urban Dictionary definition:
Subtly letting others now about how fantastic your life is while undercutting it with a bit of self-effacing humor or "woe is me" gloss.Uggggh just ate about fifteen piece of chocolate gotta learn to control myself when flying first class or they'll cancel my modelling [sic] contract LOL :p #humblebrag
I think most of us know someone who is a user of the humblebrag. I used to think it was just a fairly common technique among lawyers and academics, though I am now more of the mind that it is a "people" thing, with lawyers and academics perhaps leading the way. I'm rather glad to see an article that shows that humblebragging is empirically ineffective in its goals. In my experience, I have also found that it's also not especially effective in getting people to like the humblebragger, either.
Now, if only blatant, unrepressed, old-school bragging weren't so effective in some circles. we could make some real progress.
Friday, May 22, 2015
In my first post of this series, I asked whether business leaders had unknowingly provided the legal industry with a long-term solution to declining interest in the legal profession and potential waning influence. I suggested that business leaders may be the driving force that ends up saving the legal profession, and its "respectability". In my second post, I discussed the current state of in-house attorneys. In this post, I would like to look at the current state of private firms as it relates to the in-house attorney discussion. My view is that the competitive marketplace reactions of a growing number of firms are partially contributing to the dimming of their own future prospects. Firms will need to evolve rather quickly; how they can, I’ll discuss in a future post. However, because of the firms’ relatively weaker position compared to corporations, many firms are in very precarious circumstances.
In this interim period between past firm dominance and the future corporate acceptance of Professors Bird and Orozco’s “corporate legal strategy” (in which attorneys are fully accepted and integrated as part of business teams in corporations, resulting in greater legal opportunities), firms are struggling. From my discussions with attorneys, I have learned that many private firms are beginning to intentionally screen out attorneys that even appear to be on a path to in-house corporate life in the future. They feel less inclined to provide expensive training for someone that has (in their perception) little intention of making a career of private practice, especially their private practice. This diminishes the number of opportunities for new lawyers. Firms have a harder time training the new lawyers they have, because much of the basic business work is now taken up by in-house counsel. Corporations, for their part, have exacerbated the lack of work for new associates by using their increased influence and wealth to insist that only the most senior firm attorneys handle their corporate work—perhaps shortsightedly robbing firms of talent continuity that has historically benefitted the corporations in the end. Expensive summer clerkships and recruiting drives have all but disappeared.
Additionally, firms have become focused on hiring attorneys with portable business for the “quick hit” of income and are less concerned about hiring new law graduates. This cannibalization of mature legal talent has always occurred, but it now seems to be a much greater part of firm business plans. It has resulted in some lawyers commoditizing themselves, rather than some of their clients doing so, perhaps further weakening the profession's "respectability". Of course, because the legal industry is currently well staffed, this “horse-trading” approach will work for the present. However, it will eventually be unsustainable—as lawyers retire, there will be fewer talented lawyers to replace them or have the capacity to buy out retiring partners’ percentages. Of those, even fewer still will invite the rigors of private practice if the rewards diminish.
I, for one, am not a complete believer in the “end of Big Law”, or any size "Law", for that matter. (The late Professor Larry Ribstein discussed the subject here--disappointingly, he only briefly touched on the in-house counsel effect, and instead, focused on the firms themselves.) However, I do believe in the necessary evolution of “All Law”—where the legal industry (firm, in-house, and academia) evolves to a point of natural and mutual support which benefits society as a whole (creating greater “respectability” for all lawyers)—and businesses will initially play a dominant role. How will businesses do so? More soon in a post coming your way!
--Marcos Antonio Mendoza
Thursday, May 14, 2015
I sincerely appreciate the opportunity to post! I have been following this blog for some time with great interest. I hope to bring a third perspective—not as an academic, nor a private firm practitioner, but as an employee of a company who happens to be a lawyer.
A few weeks back, Professor Heminway posted, and I commented, on the difficulty good law students have in finding jobs. I made the point that the law is in a state of transition—firms are becoming smaller, but more opportunities are arising within corporate models. Over the past 20 or so years, attorneys have gradually become more integrated in the corporate world, and we have seen the number of positions with firms gradually decline in comparison.
As part of this mainstreaming of lawyers into the business model, lawyers are becoming more and more part of business teams, not walled-off in legal departments.* By incorporating lawyers into operational divisions, have businesses “humanized” lawyers, making them more accepted and respected? Will this growing engagement and familiarity, with lawyers as co-workers in the business environment, lead to greater opportunities for all lawyers, including those in private practice? The answer is, maybe, possibly. It’s complicated. Allow me to explain.
Let’s be clear—external counsel are respected for their pure legal skill, or otherwise, businesses wouldn’t hire them! However, business leaders often view external counsel with some trepidation, as engaging them could result in great cost and perceived “rolling roadblocks” of legal reasons things cannot done. Additionally, while lawyers and business leaders work in parallel, their goals do not exactly align. Law firms are for-profit organizations, after all, and have their own operating concerns. Nevertheless, businesses value the private law firm stamp of approval on the company’s work product for many reasons.
Most businesses (I believe, and from what I have seen) initially began onboarding lawyers not to deepen the bench of their overall business talent, but simply to lower costs tied to legal spending for basic legal services. An excellent article in the MIT Sloan Management Review by Professors Robert C. Bird and David Orozco outlines the progression for effective use of internal counsel, and I’ll return to some specific discussion of that in later posts. But I think the article accurately reflects the continuum for integration of lawyers, and most companies are somewhere around the early “avoidance” or “compliance” stages for use and understanding of internal lawyers.
However, as businesses advance in their view of legal assistance and business models incorporate lawyers as part of their entrepreneurial focus at the highest levels, I think their lawyers are on the path to becoming valued in a way that is impossible for private practice attorneys. Rather than the (unfair or not) stereotypical view of self-serving or disinterested firm lawyers some business leaders may have dealt with in the past, will these same leaders that work daily with lawyers integrated into their corporate teams grow to appreciate and respect them more, since their talent and loyalty to the companies’ interests is paramount? Will this eventually lead to a shift as to societal viewpoints about lawyers, as they become more familiar and helpful personas around everyday workplaces? And in turn, will the law firms become more generally appreciated and respected (and less commoditized!), as this growing force of in-house attorneys bridge the communication gaps with external counsel, thus increasing trust levels between the entities?
Maybe business leaders, who have historically been at odds with their law firms to some degree, will actually be the force (perhaps initially, quite inadvertently) that saves the legal profession from potentially destructive isolation and gives greater hope to aspiring law students. This interim period—as the prevalence of the private firms lessens and corporate legal strategy grows—may be difficult for all involved. More thoughts on this soon.
--Marcos Antonio Mendoza
*Depending on the organization, direct control of such lawyers may or may not remain in the general counsel’s office.