Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Dear Santa, a wish list from an in house lawyer

Dear Santa,

I know that it's Christmas Eve and you're busy delivering toys (or coal) to little boys and girls across the globe, but I haven't had time until now to write my wish list.  See I've just started a new job and it's been a bit hectic.  Combine that with playing Santa for my three boys in what little spare time there is and there hasn't been much "me" time in the last few weeks.  So I'm reaching out on the internet as only a blogger can.  My list has been years in the making. I haven't been at this new place long enough to make a full list, but over the past decade I've accumulated a few wishful thoughts.  Let's see some Christmas magic knock a few off the list?

I'd really like a contract management system that works exactly as advertised without a Phd in computer programming.  Something easy enough that sales people will adopt it without me threatening to withhold commission payments and thorough enough that it will actually make due diligence less of a night mare.

I'd LOVE it if the lawyer on the other side of the table didn't try to intimidate me by touting his resume or classification as some 'industry expert".  I get it, you're old and you've practiced for a long time.  Oh and you don't have ovaries so you're better than me.  Now that that's out of the way, can we also stop referring to female lawyers as "sweetie", "honey" or whatever other patronizing term of the day is.  I went to law school, took the bar and have sat in just as many negotiations, war rooms and board meetings as most of my peers.  Give it a rest!

Even better would be sales people who don't wait until the week before end of quarter/year to "rush" that one customer agreement because we need to make our numbers and no other sales person has procrastinated so I must not have anything to do.

Maybe, while we're getting really wishful, we can get support, transparency, and the tools needed to actually be effective at my job from my management team/board.  I'd spend a lot less time cleaning up the mess if someone would just let me sit in on a meeting or two, or let me buy that contract management system that won't meet my expectations (but is still better than nothing.)

CLE's that are actually relevant to my in house practice would be great!  You know, the kind that isn't just cover for some firm to tell me that I can't do it in house and I need to hire them.  Or buy their software.  Or give over all my data to the government.

Most of all, I just want a computer that doesn't crash when I'm 80% done with my redline/brief/email.  Or 10 minutes before deadline.  I back up often, but the 2-3 hours of IT recovery time kill me.  Every. Freakin'. Time.

As a bonus, if you think I've been really good this year, can we find someway so that all the important school events aren't scheduled on the same day/time as the board meeting, conference call, or staff meeting?  That would be ever so helpful, and the boys would thank you too.

Obviously all this won't fit in your bag of tricks, so maybe just the computer one?  I'm still pretty new at this job so maybe these won't be an issue.  So far they've been great.  But, ten years of experience tells me that my next 'industry expert' is waiting for me on the next sales call, which will be scheduled on December 29th - because numbers.

Happy holidays to all my in house brethren, or other want to be in house lurkers.  Share your wish list in the comments - just in case the big guy is taking a break from delivering toys and wants a real challenge.  


  1. I really enjoyed this post!

    As a salesperson, I admit we do call on the final day for contracts. In our small defense, we much rather be done sooner too. We hate that stress and it makes for a anxiety-heavy holiday! Who wants that??

    At any point, I apologize for everyone in my profession :) We appreciate you!

  2. I wish you had a like button for your posts. Also, Santa, EVERY in-house lawyer wants this...

    Happy New Year!