Do you think you deserve a training contract? If you do then that hardly surprises me because like most Lawyer2B.com users youre probably a member of Generation Y.
Earlier this week I attended a conference hosted by The Lawyer for graduate recruitment and HR professionals in the legal sector. The theme throughout the day was what firms can do to attract and cater for the needs of Generation Y.
Following on from the highly educated yet under-employed Generation Xers, members of Generation Y are more ambitious and confident, and question everything. Whats more, they work to live and dont live to work, meaning that they will only work long hours in return for hefty financial rewards. And more worryingly for firms, Generation Y lacks the loyalty that employers were once able to take for granted.
During one session one of the delegates asked why firms should bother to dance to Generation Ys beat? And although his question struck a chord with many of the other people in the room, the truth is that firms accept that if they dont move with the times, they might miss out on the best candidates.
That said the onus shouldnt just be on the firms. Although theres no harm in demanding more from yourself and others, you should try to manage your own expectations. For instance, try to be more flexible when it comes to seat allocations, overseas secondments, or even simple things such as booking holidays before youve even joined your future firm. As a student its very simple to just think about yourself, but as soon as you embark on your training contract you will need to start thinking and acting like a team player.
You should also try to be more realistic when it comes to your chances of securing a training contract if you dont meet a firms minimum academic criteria. Again, its great that youre more ambitious and confident than I ever was, but as Ive already mentioned nobody deserves a training contract. If you want one, you have to work for it just like all the generations before you.