So many factors contribute to the success of a lawyer beyond what law students learn in school. Maximize Your Lawyer Potential, by Amee R. McKim, focuses on what the author designates as “soft” lawyering skills. These are abilities that are not as easily measured as grades and journal participation. Though soft skills are not typically designated as required by employers, they are important characteristics for lawyers to possess and can even make the difference between landing a job or not.
The book is split into thirteen chapters, which makes it easy to read just the sections you are interested in if you don’t want to read the entire book. One aspect of this book that helps to make it very readable is that it includes tons of short anecdotes to illustrate the author’s points. Some of these even include different perspectives on the same story such as from the student, from the employer, and from law school.
There are also some sections on topics that may not be at the forefront of a law student’s mind, but will be very important as graduation nears. For example, debt is typically a large stress for many law school graduates, but debts that are delinquent or in collections can actually be issues when your character and fitness is assessed for being admitted to the bar. The author also includes helpful sections about what to do if you make a mistake while on the job and how to deal with a less than perfect supervisor.
Overall, this book is an easy read and touches on a lot of topics that law students should keep in mind as they search for first jobs. I would highly recommend it for all law students. Although there are some sections that will be more helpful when actually practicing, there are many parts that provide advice that would be highly valuable to read while still in school.