Happy New Year, bitter associates. I hope this missive finds you gainfully employed and wildly optimistic about the coming year. Let’s face it, last year was a miserable year—from a law firm perspective anyway. Not enough clients, deals, billable hours . . . Which means the compensation was awful!
Personally, my bonus was off 24% from last year—and 36% from two years ago. I’m embarrassed to say that I made less (barely) than a million dollars this year. But never again! I have twin seven year olds in private schools, a seven-figure mortgage, and a new summer house in Nantucket. In other words, I can’t afford to make a measly $910,000 a year.
As such, here are my New Year Resolutions:
1. Kiss Clients’ Asses with Renewed Vigor and Zeal
Take them to Yankee games and steak houses as much as humanly possible. If need be, I’ll even call El Tigre and score them some high-priced escorts. Bottom line: I’ll do whatever it takes to convince these cost-conscious pricks to use my overpriced firm.
2. Fire More Lazy, Useless Associates than Necessary
Next year needs to be lean and mean. That means no excess associate fat. So if you’re not a legal genius or a relentless billing-machine, you’re a fucking dead man.
3. Fire as Many Lazy, Useless Partners as Possible
The only thing worse than unproductive associates making $200,000 a year are unproductive 65-year-old partners making 1.75 million a year. To hell with any and all compensation models that reward nonproductive geezers. If you don’t have a fat book of business TODAY, get the hell out. I don’t give a shit that you represented Eastern Airlines in 1976.
4. Cease Donating Money to My Law School
Let’s face it, the only reason you give money to your alma mater is to get great football tickets or have a library named after you. Since law schools don’t have football teams and Columbia’s library already has a namesake, there’s no point.
5. Cut Back the Summer Associate Program by 50 Percent
It’s a buyer’s market for the near future, so what’s the point in spending lots of money to “sell” to law students? It’s like taking a sex addict to Le Cirque for dinner to seduce them into having sex with you. Don’t waste time and money on sure things. There’s no point in bidding against yourself if you don’t have to—and right now, we don’t have to.
6. Stop Going to Therapy
Being sensitive and self-aware is a detriment in business. All that introspection and self-analysis is hurting my ability to be the cold-hearted, money-making asshole I know, deep down, that I really am.
7. Start Practicing Yoga
Being a money-making asshole creates a lot of anxiety, so I’ll definitely need some sort of stress-relief routine.
8. Start Drinking Again
Since I’m probably not going to go to yoga, I’ll need a backup stress-relief routine—one that’s much easier and more enjoyable to execute. I’m not too good with in downward dog, but I’m near flawless with a bottle of Ketel One in my hand.
9. Stop Writing for Bitter Lawyer
First, they don’t pay me a goddamn thing. Second, I get way too much negative feedback from the floundering, clueless associates who actually read the crap this site publishes.
[Post image from Shutterstock]