Specialising in legal support recruitment, I work with a wide variety of law firms, from sole practitioners to top-tier and global firms. Although all firms are different, their top performers all have qualities in common. I am regularly told by hiring managers about their best legal secretaries and what makes them stand out compared to others in their firms. Here are a few key performance indicators for you to consider:
Communicate with the fee earners whom you are supporting to ensure they know what you are already working on and what deadlines you are working to. Allow them to coordinate their work commitments together, to prioritise what has to be completed first.
When supporting multiple fee earners, you will be faced with mixed personalities and mixed working styles to adjust to. You need to be able to adjust to suit the individual needs of the people you support, ensuring that you work collaboratively and maintain the standards that they each require (and expect!).
Instead of waiting for instructions, always look at the bigger picture and start to take the initiative to determine what needs to be done next.
Attention to detail
Preparing legal documents, you just cannot afford to make any mistakes. Deadlines are important, but you need to spend time double checking your work (and then checking it again!) to save you the angst (and embarrassment) of redoing it.
To be on the top of your game, you need to have up to date skills. There are many courses available both at TAFE and online that focus on office and legal training, MS Office skills and legal software. Some courses even focus on particular practice areas so that you can really be an expert in your field to be considered as one of the best legal secretaries.