Whether you’re already looking at law firm jobs or just starting your career training for a position in the legal field, you need to possess certain traits and abilities if you hope to find success. Take a look at these 5 important skills and see if you measure up:
Professionalism: Your actions as a legal professional will have a direct effect on how clients, attorneys and judges view your organization. Everything from the way you dress, to how you interact with others can send a positive—or negative—message, but you are also required BY LAW to conduct yourself ethically. If you become a legal secretary or paralegal, you must adhere to the same attorney-client privilege rules as the attorneys themselves.
Communication: Do you have excellent communication skills? If you work in a law firm, you’ll need to communicate effectively through the written and oral word. Whether you answer phones, attend meetings, greet clients, gather information, send emails or just speak to others in the work place, you need to be clear and concise. And remember, good communication skills are not just about talking; they’re also about listening.
Critical thinking: In addition to having a firm grasp of legal terms and concepts, you may also need to use your critical thinking skills to ask questions of attorneys and clients. Often, before clients choose an attorney, they speak to a paralegal who finds out the particulars of the case. As a paralegal or legal secretary, you might also conduct some investigative work, gathering documents and evidence and speaking to witnesses and other people who might be involved in a case.
Organization/Attention to Detail: Law offices are very busy places where you may be required to work on several cases at once. That’s why your organizational skills and fine attention to detail are vital. You need to keep the facts of individual cases straight and be certain there are no errors in the legal documents you handle. You will also need to meet strict filing deadlines and adhere to very specific rules of law.
Technological: The modern law office relies on modern technology. You need to have solid computer skills and the ability to learn about new programs and databases as the technology evolves.
Have you ever imagined working in a law office? You could get there with the right skills and training. At Career Quest Learning Centers, you could complete our Legal Secretary diploma program in as little as 35 weeks or earn your Associate of Applied Science Degree in Paralegal Studies in less than 15 months. Give us a call in Lansing at 877-481-4930 or Jackson at 877-365-8144 to learn more now.