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A dangerous game: How older lawyers diminish their Gen Y colleagues

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NZ Lawyer | 25 Aug 2014, 09:51 a.m. Agree 0
At our sister publication in Australia, we heard from a young lawyer who believes his older counterparts are having a negative effect on his generation of legal talent. Today we ask Kiwi lawyers if they agree
  • Mark | 25 Aug 2014, 11:55 a.m. Agree 0
    I have experienced this lack of respect from seniors at times in my career. But generally you just need to see it for what it is. The senior who acts like this is usually very insecure and lacks many abilities. Its just a shame that these people can't see past themselves to do what's good for the long term future of their firms. I would recommend that a younger lawyer consider leaving a firm that tolerates such behaviour. There are other senior lawyers out there who do have the skills, personality and interest to mentor others in a beneficial way.
  • David Roughan | 25 Aug 2014, 12:41 p.m. Agree 0
    When I was admitted at age 25, became a partner in a large firm at 28 and a Notary Public at 30, I really appreciated the encouragement of senior colleagues.
    However, it wasn`t until I was 39 that I had the confidence to start my own firm and until I had been practising 27 years to stand for Law Society office.
    I enjoy working with colleagues, younger & older, who work with me in achieving good outcomes for our clients.
    I am from time to time treated by younger practitioners in a dismissive & condescending manner - I have to say it happens more when I deal with Legal Executives than it does when I deal with lawyers - although that rarely happens in face to face situations.
    There are far less face to face dealings and opportunities for collegiality now than there were in the first 3 decades of my 4 decades (& still counting) of practice to date. Being more removed from colleagues by our dealings means its too easy to be dismissive of others , whatever their age & experience.
    We need to try harder to appreciate and celebrate how each of us working together play invaluable roles in solving our clients problems. We only exacerbate those problems by treating our colleagues -older or younger, men or women, born here or not, city or provincial, big firm or not - without courtesy and respect.
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