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  • A month in at Winston & Strawn - JEREMYCWILSON.COM | JEREMYCWILSON.COM
    more general but the industry is more specific In general I help represent 1 technology companies in a full range of activities including raising money exit IP general matters and also 2 non tech companies who undertake certain tech based activities such as licensing joint venture agreements etc 3 Finally we also help represent investors in those companies which could be angel or venture investors I ve been on a few projects and deals thus far and everything has gone smoothly One lesson I ve learned for a second time now is that it does take time to get fully integrated like it would anywhere I ve had a few interesting things going already but I know there is a whole lot more to come over the next year Once a few interesting things start popping up I ll do my best to share any lessons learned along the way One thing I like about the role and sought out is that I am part of a small team since I really just work with the one person in each group In a big firm it can be easy to get lost so I purposely sought out working with micro teams The benefits here are very clear a smaller heirarchy few people you rely on easier to have discussions and more speed and innovation than you could have in a big team This means that work can happen faster feedback can be better and communication with the client can be more seamless It s also good because there s more alignment with workstream and scheduling leading to greater happiness of the team members My one piece of advice to anyone reading is to seek that out Ever smaller teams where each person has ever more responsibility Stay tuned to hear

    Original URL path: http://www.jeremycwilson.com/?p=3006 (2016-04-27)
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  • Careers | JEREMYCWILSON.COM
    members were asked what advice they would give others The most common was expressed in such quotes as follow your passion the money will work itself out pursue what is most fun to you do what you love and enjoy the ride Oddly though the second most common theme appeared to be in conflict with the first Focus on making money earlier advised one 86er Ignore that pursue your passion stuff said another Make more money added one 86er Get promises in writing advised another A third theme evolved over the importance of picking a spouse Be more careful in choosing a spouse warned one 86er If he seems like a jerk he s a jerk Said others Marry someone else a screwed up marriage screws up everything else And finally one obviously burned class member put it simply Get divorced now Many members of the class wished they had taken more risks Trust your gut take some career risks be more ambitious think big there is never a good time were among the comments And finally many alums emphasized the value and importance of family Spend time with your children advised one There is nothing more rewarding than investing in your children said another Time will fly by and your children s lives will never be repeated Tags Careers Lives MBA Saturday June 16th 2012 Business School Careers 2 Comments Leadership Lessons from the Chairman Of My Firm About two weeks ago only days after beginning my new job at Vedder Price I had the special privilege of having lunch with Bob Stucker the Chairman of our firm In addition to making a good contact at the firm and eventually making my way onto a couple of his interesting projects I also had the thrill of seeing first hand how a top lawyer and revered leader in Chicago navigated his way to the top and what his thoughts were regarding the future It was about 11 10am and only my second week at the firm I had a lunch scheduled with a couple of associates in the office one whose office is across the hallway from mine and another who sits right next door At Vedder most people tend to head to lunch around noon so at the time I was rushing against the clock to get a few things printed and to draft a couple of emails before heading out But as I was typing up my first email I looked up and saw Maryanne head into my office Maryanne is the Chairman s Executive Assistant and she told me that the chairman wanted to take me to lunch What a remarkable opportunity I thought to myself So of course I told Maryanne that I was excited to head to lunch with Bob and she replied that he d drop by my office to grab me at 11 50am So after rescheduling my lunch with my coworkers and getting started on a couple of emails Bob dropped by at 11 50 on the dot He had on a nice gray suit that day despite the fact that our office recently went business casual in the summer Fortunately though I haven t followed that trend and I ve been wearing a shirt and tie to the office every day So I was dressed for the occasion So Bob and I headed toward the elevator walking past reception on the 26th floor I noticed that Bob spoke to every single person we passed on the way out addressing each one by their first name including our great receptionist Vickie who sits by the elevator And although he s a very busy guy not once did Bob seem like he was too much in a hurry to say hello to anyone On the way down the elevator he explained that he loved being at the firm and that it was a great pleasure to get to know everyone there over the years And it was clear that he was sincere about it After all he had been at the same firm for his entire legal career and took the time to know everyone by name and learn about their families In the elevator Bob said we would have lunch at an Italian restaurant Coco Pazzo which was a few blocks down It was lightly raining that afternoon so instead of walking we hopped in a cab Bob had an umbrella but unfortunately I didn t bring mine a fact that Bob noticed before I did Bob told me to wait inside while he waived down a cab We hopped in and then he sent me to the restaurant while he paid so I could avoid the rain When Bob walked in all the waiters said hello to Bob and greeted him by name As it turns out Bob if pretty well known in Chicago and at a lot of the local restaurants So they sat us down ahead of the line took our orders right away and Bob and I had a nice discussion for the next eighty or so minutes We kicked off the conversation with a little business first discussing an upcoming project he wanted me to get involved in where we were retained by a CEO to help negotiate an employment contract But the conversation quickly diverted into more interesting things such as his background and mine The practices I thought I d be interested in and his process of choosing a practice back as a younger attorney I also talked a bit about my personal history and Bob talked a bit about himself It s funny how when you re having good conversation eighty minutes can feel like twenty And before I knew it we had finished our meal paid our tab and had to head out Fortunately the weather had cleared up so we walked back to the office which was the perfect way to finish off our chat less abruptly On the way home I brought up a few people I d worked with in the past including the Practice Chair of my old consulting firm who Bob knew directly That was a good way to really connect with him at the end Upon reflection here are a few lessons I learned from the discussion 1 Good leaders are also good entrepreneurs Bob spent his entire legal career as an entrepreneur Out of law school he turned down a couple of white shoe firms to join Vedder Price which at the time was still an up and coming law firm in Chicago It gave me the opportunity to have real impact he said But rather than simply playing a part in an up and coming firm and taking what came his way he also decided to make his own opportunities And along the way he helped build a couple of practice groups including the financial institutions group and the executive compensation group Today Vedder Price does more work with financial institutions than any other Chicago firm and Vedder s executive pay practice is second to none in the U S Most law firms and business for that matter are not wildly successful entering new markets but Bob was an exception to the rule because he sought out new opportunities 2 Good leaders focus on their people Bob was the kind of person who inspired others in the office As I mentioned above he said hello to everyone we passed and remembered everyone s name and personal story It s critical to retain every single employee that comes here Bob said at lunch Not only because it s economically better for a firm to do so but also because we want everyone here to be successful and build a career here And it wasn t just rhetoric In fact Vedder Price has done a great job of not letting many of its attorneys go during the economic downturn and it didn t let a single staff person go despite the worst of the economic downturn Bob had a laser like focus on everyone at the firm He knew there names knew where they sat in the building and reached out to them when it made sense After all he was even taking me the new and only summer associate this year to lunch during my second week 3 Leaders reach back and develop leaders Just a few days before lunch I was speaking to one of the firm receptionists and she mentioned that Bob had been a great mentor to many of the attorneys at the firm At the time I was glad to hear it but she had also never worked directly with Bob so I solicited a few other opinions I went to lunch that day with two senior partners here at the firm and one of the them was the lead for partner recruiting at the firm He said the same thing about Bob that Bob has mentored me over the years at the firm and that s why I ve done so well today And for the last couple of weeks I heard similar comments from a few others Was it all just rhetoric I asked myself a few times After all balancing the tightrope walk of managing client development and people development has always been difficult at services firms But for Bob the answer is a resounding No Bob has already gone out of his way a few times now to bring me into meetings and teach me lessons about the world of law firms And after the meetings are over he ll always imparts a few lines to me He has also set me up with a couple of attorneys that he works with so I could learn more about the firm I was glad to see this was Bob s style In fact I recently wrote about this myself a few weeks back click here to see the post 4 To get to the top do something you like People who make it all the way to the top do because they are passionate about what they are doing something I talk constantly about here on my site click here for one of my favorite posts on passion Not only do they have good ideas but they actually have a real desire to go after them During lunch Bob told me that he s always loved practicing law and that he s never thought of leaving the firm He also mentioned how much he like the legal aspects of executive compensation financial institutions and securities work And even though it wasn t that hot of an area legally back then because Bob enjoyed it and thought there was opportunity he paved the way for Vedder Price by initiating work in those areas That passion is especially evident now given the fact that he s stayed with the firm and practice areas many years later despite the modern trend that many professionals have of hopping from firm to firm 5 Leaders are humble and kind And it goes without saying based on my story above that Bob was as humble as firm Chairmen come As I mentioned Bob knew everyone s name at the firm he made sure that I didn t get wet in the rain and he even made sure I got enough to eat for lunch ordering an extra plate while we were there I was also impressed by the fact that Bob actually showed up to take me to lunch at 11 50 that day rather than a little earlier or later Leaders at his level are often so busy that they prioritize their work over other people s schedules In fact many lawyers and client service professionals do I was particularly impressed that Bob didn t do that because he valued my time Conclusion Today s leaders are called to help tomorrow s leaders learn all they can especially now as the business and legal worlds are changing as they become filled with new technologies and expand to the ends of every continent and as they reshape themselves to thrive in today s changing economy Fortunately there are people like Bob who are already engaged in this process These leaders dedicate serious time and energy to prepare the next generation to face these new challenges and to take on some of the current ones That s because the best leaders know that mentorship is critical That a leader s job is not only to cut costs meet with clients and negotiate deals but also to make sure the up and comers in the organization are well equipped to do the same Leaders set the tone and inspire others on how to produce results and eventually how to become leaders themselves And when they do these up and coming leaders will be inspired and committed to take on more than they ever could have before which is critical in the ever changing business and legal worlds And in the end these lessons meetings conversations and even lunches with interns can make all the difference Tags Careers Leadership Management Networking Sunday July 4th 2010 Careers Leadership 10 Comments Good Article Best Places To Start Your Career Have you ever wondered where you will end up twenty years from now Will you be the leader you always wanted to be That maverick who went out and started your own company That diplomatic leader who always had a way with people who eventually became CEO Or the guy who always wanted to change the world and ended up running a non profit On the other hand have you ever wondered what would happen if you got stuck in middle management and missed the opportunity to do that Or if you couldn t navigate the waters and kept getting held back because the economy was bad Well for those new to the workforce just last week Bloomberg Businessweek came out with a list of companies that may provide the best places to launch your career Just last week Bloomberg Businessweek came out with a list on where can you find the top undergraduate internship and graduation programs in the country This is BusinessWeek s third annual list of the Best Internships where the rankings are determined according to data such as pay and the percentage of interns who get full time jobs as well as feedback from career services directors across the U S This is not to say that these are the only places to get good training I personally didn t work for any of these companies upon graduation and neither did a lot of very successful people I know On the other hand though it is a solid list of companies that will ensure that you get a solid summer program and a substantive experience over the summer And that sounds like a good proposition to me especially in today s economic environment Take a look at the article and see what you think The article is titled Internships The Best Places To Start Click here to read the interactive rankings table Tags Careers Companies Recruiting Saturday June 26th 2010 Careers 1 Comment Careers Question How Important Is My Upcoming Phone Screen Anyone who runs recruiting probably thinks about the following question all the time How can we distinguish the firm s future stars from those who simply have good resumes Well that s a good question What many applicants don t know is that employers often get hundreds sometimes thousands of resumes That s especially true now where the economy is slumping and where a record number of qualified applicants and overall applicants are out of work So today recruiters not only have the task of sorting through resumes and screening candidates but they also have the nuanced task of of interviewing more people and looking more closely at all parts of the interview process And in a recent question on GottaMentor I responded to a question about just that Is my phone screen more casual than a typical interview I was asked on the website Conventional wisdom suggests that phone screens are more of an initial hurdle before the real deal in person meetings The meetings where you schmooze with with HR try to prove fit with the team and convince the line manager that you re the future leader the firm s been looking for Years ago before the internet skyrocketed the number of applications for open positions and before the economic downturn put more people out of work this idea probably had a bit more validity But those days are long gone Today open positions not only get hundreds and even thousands of applicants they also get a very large number of really qualified ones And as such all the parts of an interview are becoming more important And so my belief is that the phone screen is no longer a screen It s a distinct and important part of the interview process which means that you should prepare with the same level of seriousness that you would for an in person interview You should practice the same questions evince the same confidence and politeness demonstrate that you re both a leader and a team player and be sure you have the same level of preparedness and relaxation Here are a few reasons why 1 Phone Interviews May Give You More Time For one you never know an interviewer s schedule And unless the recruiter is scheduled back to back all day then there may not be a hard cut off in terms of time like there might be in person where you are in an unfamiliar environment and where the interviewer will have likely scheduled your interview around their other important meetings But on the phone you can often take more of a lead ask a few extra questions and as a result really collect and pass along good information As such the more prepared you are the better conversation you might be able to have 2 Interviews Are Often Holistic Second I think many candidates tend to over compartmentalize the interview process While on one hand an interview might be intended to be more of a screen to the next round and may have little bearing on how things progress afterward on the other hand it could instead lay the groundwork going forward And if the firm has discussions on the what the screener thought about you the conversation it could have serious impact on how people perceive you during the next round I think this is especially true if you do really well because then the recruiter will share all your information with those you ll meet next It s also especially true at companies like Goldman Sachs and Google where the firms keep intricate records of the people they interview even if that interview is done by phone 3 Good Leaders Are Always On Third my general belief is that you re always representing yourself and your organizations during every interaction That s especially true during interviews where the person across from you or on the other line has the task of assessing you as a candidate It s also especially true today where information travels at the speed of light speed and so the chances that what you say will be common knowledge at the firm are higher not to mention where the chances of running to someone again at a career related event or during another interview down the line are high And so you should try to think longer term about the interviews you go through especially if you intend to stay in the same industry Having conducted a large number of interviews and gone on a pretty large number of interviews myself I speak from experience with all three For many it may sound unreasonable to put so many hours into prepping for a phone talk especially older candidates who are not used to putting in so much time just to use the phone But from experience I would suggest that it s not After all interviews whether they seem difficult or not demand a great deal of skill and agility And that s especially true if the interviewer is less experienced because in those cases you ll want to be sure you convey all of the right information As such I recommend that you give the same time and effort that you would an in person meeting so you can present yourself in the best light possible Because in the end you never know how things will play out Good luck PS As I ve mentioned in a few previous posts post on Gottamentor and post on resumes you might considering taking a look at GottaMentor com when you get the chance For now though here s a sneak peak at another one of my responses from the site Tags Careers Recruiting Tuesday June 15th 2010 Careers No Comments My First Day As A Summer Associate At Vedder Price Do you remember your first day on the new job I bet you probably went in not knowing anyone but hoping to impress everyone And it s also likely you also felt like you were running around frantically trying to fill out paperwork or scrambling around on your way to meetings and training sessions hoping you wouldn t be late We ve definitely all been there before But consider doing that now in what s considered one of the worst economies ever Where the stakes are higher and the odds of getting an offer are statistically much lower Sounds nerve wrecking right I thought it did too But fortunately I realized that most of that stuff does not apply here at Vedder Price a mid sized and full service law firm here in Chicago At long last one year after first learning about the firm more than eleven months after first reaching out five months after submitting my official application three months after I got the good word that they wanted to have me for the summer and just a couple of weeks after my law school final exams ended I finally made my way to downtown Chicago to start my first day as a summer associate which technically was the Tuesday after Memorial Day weekend And boy was my first day exciting Although my office is on the 26th floor top floor I spent most of my day switching between the other six floors in our downtown Chicago high rise building with views of the Chicago River I met with the recruiter I d most recently been in touch with to say hello and chatted with another to get situated for the day I talked with multiple people from HR and administration to learn about the business I spoke various individuals from Accounting went over the billable hours at law firms which is a whole new post for later had discussions about professional development and learned the importance of compliance with the docket team And I even met a former attorney now working in professional development Turns out she is a friend and a former classmate of a really good friend of mine who works at Northwestern Law And after all of the back to back meetings with new people here at Vedder Price I spent the latter half of the day in computer training learning new things like our billing systems firm directory this is going to be extra useful this summer and our email server And in the end it was exactly the action packed training focused first day I originally envisioned But despite an action packed first day at work mostly schmoozing and learning our new systems I took off around 5 30pm that evening to hop on a flight to New York city for the second of my two conferences that week with MLT which lasted the rest of the week And six days later after hours and hours of networking fun and meeting new people and employers I headed back to Chicago for my second first day of work this past Monday I call it my second first day of work because despite meeting lots of attorneys and learning some of the systems the week before spending a week out of the office has a way of making you forget lots of things So I spent the past Monday figuring out some of the same things I learned the week before logging on to my computer tracking down passwords reading the instructions on how to use my phone meeting my secretary and firm mentors for the summer and last but not least reaching out to new people here at the firm including a couple of Northwestern Law alum and another Kellogg JD MBA alumni class of 2009 Monday definitely felt more chaotic than my original first day in part because I felt a bit behind after being gone for the week but also because I m making a point to meet lots of new people and take part in lunches with different attorneys at the firm in addition to everything else I m doing The good news is that I tend to enjoy reaching out and meeting others so despite being time consuming it s also been a lot of fun But even if I didn t enjoy reaching out so much everyone here at Vedder Price has made it pretty easy to get to know people at the firm so things would still be going well In fact on my first day here I not only met a number of partners and senior partners but I also had a good conversation with our firm s chairman Mr Bob Stucker In my case though I did reach out to many of them before ever stepping foot in the office including Mr Stucker so it was an easy introduction when I dropped by his office In sum my first day went well and my summer is definitely taking off Thanks to everyone at Vedder Price for ensuring my first few days have gone smoothly and for including me in pieces of their projects during my first week on the job And I m especially grateful for the latter considering that this summer will probably be a bit different from past ones when the economy was better and billable hours flowed like the Chicago river does during the summer It should be interesting to see how the summer turns out Stay tuned Tags Careers Law School Recruiting Summer Internship Thursday June 10th 2010 Law School 5 Comments Careers Question Should I Put The Word Leadership On My Resume Have you ever had the task of hiring someone Sometimes it can feel impossible right On your worst day your dream hire can turn out to have just been a good marketer Weak problem solving skills no sense of urgency and not the leader he or she touted being on their resume On the other hand sometimes you just hit the jackpot and the person quickly engages in the role quickly gets plugged into everything at the office and is poised to be a good leader from day one But the question is how can you really know from a resume screen exactly which one you are choosing And how can you tell if they are going to be a good leader The reality is that sometimes you can do everything perfectly and things will still turn out for the worst This happens all the time in But assuming a little correlation between the resume and the hiring decision there s a typical process that recruiters tend to go through which is usually pretty effective And in a recent question I responded to a question on GottaMentor one of the members asked about putting the word leadership on your resume They specifically wanted to know what the implication were of changing the bottom section of their resumes from Extracurricular Activities to Leadership And Extracurricular I thought it was a good question not only because it involves putting resumes in the context of pre MBA or post MBA jobs but also because it involves a little bit of philosophy on leadership In any event I ve provided my response below I ll also note that lots of interesting questions just like this one are asked and responded to every single day So as I mentioned in a recent post you might considering taking a look at GottaMentor when you get the chance For now though here s a sneak peak at one of my responses from the site MY RESPONSE Dear Anonymous First off you hit the nail on the head that leadership is an important consideration in any career you pursue and as a result any application you submit As such you re right to think that a good company or firm will want to hear more about your past leadership experiences After all conventional wisdom suggests that past performance is indicative of future performance On one hand this means that during the recruiting process companies will want to know as much about your past leadership experiences as possible On the other hand though you may want to be careful about your strategy While showing leadership on your resume is important putting the word leadership on your resume calling out that you have been a leader may also come off as pretentious as you suggested Why Perhaps here are a few reasons 1 Because leadership is not a typical section that goes on a resume If it were then you would have seen it multiple times on the professional experience section 2 Also because the word leadership is completely overused and misused by just about everyone today It s often confused with titles and not sufficiently correlated to influence and results 3 Also because conventional wisdom suggests that leadership is not about taking credit for the work you ve done One of my favorite sayings in the world defines a leader as One who can motivate his colleagues and get things done without making his teammates feel that it was the leader who had actually got the work done So in my view the best approach to your resume is not to tell but to demonstrate that you ve led that you ve done some important things in the past and you have important specific plans for the future If you can do that in a way that s direct and avoids generalities then during your interview they ll probably ask you about it That will give you the real chance to provide them with the real details of your experience and as such prove that you had a leadership experience And so in the end I would encourage you to shift your thinking from describing what your titles were and telling what you ve done to describing who you are and what you bring to the table as evidenced by what you ve done Does this distinction make sense Ultimately it s your decision if you want to make a new title for the section It s quite possible that an employer wouldn t even notice the difference And in some circumstances an employer might be drawn in by the word and take a more close look at what you write But from my experience I suspect that most of the top employers wouldn t be impressed by the wording change not only because it s easy for anyone to put leadership on a resume but also because they probably interview a lot of people with leadership experiences I personally live by Robin Sharma s motto you don t need a title to be a leader Because of that and because of traditional resume protocol I don t use the world leadership on my resume but chances are that it will not make a difference no matter what you decide so long as you have substance Good luck Tags Careers Leadership Resume Thursday May 27th 2010 Careers Leadership 1 Comment Careers Question Reach Out Make Connectons Find Mentors Then Do It Again What if I told you I had the one secret that could help you achieve a world class level of success What if I said that Michael Jordan and Tiger Woods became the athletes they are today because they did it And that without it Barack would not be our current president And that every single Fortune 500 CEO today did the same thing Well the truth is that most highly successful people athletes musicians professionals speakers and thinkers are doing it Nowadays skill and passion can only get you so far The most successful people also reach out and find mentors It s no mistake that I said the word find in my introduction While some world class performers and leaders did stumble upon their mentors most people don t That s because the good mentors can be really hard to find After all the most successful people in the world work long hours and have limited time dozens of competing priorities and goals that they can t let go by the wayside to help someone who may not even respect their time But from experience I know that great mentors definitely do exist And because I was lucky enough to find a SUPER mentor in my very first job I wanted to share a few words here on my site that I also shared with a friend a current MLT fellow seeking out a little advice on networking See below for that person s question and below that for my response I ll note that I only included selected parts of the conversation as some of the information might have revealed too much about their identity and as other parts were less relevant to the content of the message I ll also note that this post turned out to be longer than expected EMAIL QUESTION Hey Jeremy Skipped part of question 1 I m glad you enjoyed Leading Matters And I applaud your participation in the middle of your exams you are a rockstar It sounds like your Chicago event was really engaging deleted part of message 2 You are awesome for thinking about MLT in your blog Myself and my fellow b school prospectives are juggling a few things that you might find relevant to write about Actual list of things deleted The biggest thing on my agenda right now is networking I am nervous about cold calling people in my industry i e social investing But I know that I have to get over that initial fright if I want to get anything out of this I actually just got back from dinner with someone who a Kellogg alum put me in touch with I also wonder how do I extend those relationships beyond just a one time informational interview How do I stay in contact without being bothersome Should I make myself helpful to them Good luck with the rest of your finals Name MY RESPONSE TO QUESTION Hey Name Good to hear from you and thanks for your message This is a really good set of questions and now is the perfect time for you to start thinking about them as you go through the MLT process and start to think about new career options most of which are challenging to break into But the good news is that once you get used to reaching out and become more skilled at it it actually becomes a lot of fun especially for outgoing and high potential professionals like yourself Here are a few of my initial thoughts As I said above I was lucky enough to find a phenomenal professional mentor early in my professional career I concede though that most people don t have that experience And for reference when I say I found

    Original URL path: http://www.jeremycwilson.com/?tag=careers (2016-04-27)
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  • Law | JEREMYCWILSON.COM
    hear how things go I am excited for the new beginning Tags Careers Law Wednesday September 10th 2014 Careers No Comments The Role of Local Counsel One question that often arises in the practice of corporate law is whether you really need to hire local counsel for commercial deals The answer is an unequivocal yes Here is the short answer for why Local counsel is the lawyer or law firm that is qualified to do business in a certain geography They are often hired becuase the laws of that geography might be critical to facilitating a deal including a commercial finance deal a secured lending transaction or real estate deal just to name a few In many transactions law firms will hire local counsel because their clients have business going in other states As a general rule a lawyer can only work on a legal matter if he or she is qualified to practice law in that state If the deal takes place in a state where there lawyer is not qualified to practice law then the lawyers would not be able to work on the deal On the other hand if the deal takes place in a state where the lawyers are qualified to practice but parts of a deal may involve an additional state then a firm may hire local counsel to assist One reason local counsel should be a part of any relevant deal because without hiring them lead counsel may be engaged in the unauthorized practice of law Anothe reason to hire local counsel is because counsel should also have more knowledge and experience in the states that they practice Without getting too far into the weeds local counsel is very important because they provide opinions that give comfort to lendeers and induce them to move forward in transactions that ar eoutside their borders These opinions are relied upon to deem the transaction as valid to show that it complies with all aspects of local law and that the debt is secured by verifiable collateral in that specific state While the folks at many big firms on a deal are certainly smart enough to do such work they wouldn t be as close to the matters as local counsel would be and that s the role of local counsel Tags Law Saturday July 13th 2013 Business School No Comments Business doesn t like law law doesn t like business It s true much of the time Think about it Ask a business person a legal question and here s what you ll hear that sounds like something the lawyer should deal with I don t have time to think about such small details I m a big picture person The lawyer is just the opposite She responds the details can make or break the whole deal But business that is just nonsense It s just guesswork and unpredictable Because the business person does not like law that person will inevitably fail to consider all the risks

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  • Archive Careers | JEREMYCWILSON.COM
    pull back and avoid getting in over our head By understanding many new projects we can work on in our jobs before quality slips Understanding when to make something perfect or when good enough is enough and to just be done With more information and more possibilities than ever before it s more important than ever to understand our edge and not go further If we find it then we ll get better and one day the edge will be further and further out than we ever imagined On the other hand if we never find it then we won t move at all And not only will we be stuck we ll also be left behind while the edge goes further and further out Just a thought Sunday November 3rd 2013 Careers 6 Comments New beginnings People all over the world crave new beginnings But ironically most people also do everything they can to avoid them The lawyer who slaves away at her job for an extra few years because she likes her salary and doesn t know what to do next The middle manager who is comfortable with the day to day routine which he thinks he can t find anywhere else Or the aspiring journalist who chooses to stay at a big company instead of working in the small town in Iowa for the chance to finally make it on air This is because new beginnings are hard and uncertain But new beginnings are also the best opportunity you have to change everything They give you a sense of hope and rebirth They remind you that more in the world is possible if we just look up And they remind you how good you are the moment you break out of your routine That s why we celebrate them on new years and new birthdays It s why we get excited to start over in school again or start a new job after school It s what makes entrepreneurs excited to wake up each and every day The ability to do something for the first time To chance to tackle the problem that everyone else said would not work Every day in yoga we approach our practice the same way with a beginner s mind We start every class in childs pose and we take our first breath and put our feet down on the mat for the first time You don t know how class will go And sometimes you feel sore tired and nervous you might not finish But every day you take the first breath concentrate and more often than not you not only make it through the hard part but you also make more progress than you ever imagined That s why so many people keep going back In short new beginnings sometimes give you the opportunity to change everything Wednesday September 11th 2013 Careers Entrepreneurship Leadership 1 Comment Meeting my readers I don t do it often as I want but I really enjoy meeting my readers I ve had the chance to meet many of them In Chicago Atlanta Phoenix New York and the Bay But also in countries like Kenya Today I had the chance to meet one of my favorite readers We ve been trying to meet up for a few weeks and it finally happened He just graduated college and had a lot of really great energy not to mention questions about the world He came prepared with a list of questions but we didn t get to most of them I think that meeting my readers remains one of the best ways to help hear more about the things students and professionals are thinking about and what their stories are What they think about work how they think about grad school and education and what impact they want to make in their lifetime It also helps me hear about the things they fear The fear of making sales calls fear of getting rejected and fear of failing at what they do And so I like to talk a lot about how to overcome that We come up with plans so they can see a path to figuring out how to make it more likely that they will succeed But here s the real secret The hard is part isn t defining the path or coming up with a plan that s the easy part Unfortunately it s the part most consultants and advisors focus on The hard part is doing the scary thing of taking a stand and sticking to the path And so that s where I like to focus And it made for a really fun conversation today If any of you are interested in chatting please let me know I d love to hear from you But before you write check out Education Matters Project Most people I talk to tend to want to support the cause by sharing their story about why education matters to them Saturday September 7th 2013 Careers Education Leadership No Comments Nothing is for everyone You know this but you ignore it every single time And you always find out the hard way If you re fundraising for Catholic Extension in Chicago you have to ask yourself why does it matter what the atheist next door thinks about your phone strategy If you re a marketing executive at Target why does it matter what loyal shoppers at Neiman Marcus think about your new products Or if you re applying to college from the poorest schools in one of the poorest neighborhoods in the world then why are you trying to please the admissions committees from colleges who don t care about your story We all know this but we always seem to forget that nothing is for everyone Think about it The vast majority of people in the world have never sat in a Starbucks and never used an Android Likewise the vast majority of people in many parts of Asia do not have indoor plumming The numbers show this very clearly Just because you have it doesn t mean everyone else does And the sooner we understand this the more time we can spend focusing on ways to have more impact in the world by pleasing the people who do care In the end you re more likely to succeed if you say this is what I stand for And this is what I believe If it s not for you then I ll find the other people who believe in my story In short ignore the skeptics And spend more with the people that believe Friday September 6th 2013 Careers Education Entrepreneurship Leadership No Comments New project based on bravery During times of change there s nothing more important than bravery So I m going to explore the topic over the upcoming months Whether deciding to take a stand on an issue that is controversial Going out on a limb to take on a risky project Or deciding to risk everything and tell someone exactly how you feel Brave acts are the things that help us make history That s why giving people a platform for bravery is so critical That s why I am exploring the topic No details yet no decisions on platform but the time will come Click here to let us know if you have a story of bravery to share I look forward to sharing mine ArtofBravery Wednesday August 7th 2013 Business School Careers Consulting No Comments Pattern Recognition One of the most important things I noticed working with Seth Godin over the past week was the importance of patterns This idea was also pointed out by one of the team members Josh Long Every time we had an idea or posed a question you could see Seth thinking of patterns Patterns in people patters in markets patterns in the future We try to hedge our bets with information and analysis but more often than not it comes down to gut feel that intangible pattern recognition that tells you that your next project could be a big winner One pattern Seth discussed was how people look at risk He noted that the pattern that many people attempt to fail small At the last minute we all take a step back and take that compelling elements out of our work because it s safer to fail small He noted it not only in individuals but also in groups Another patten he discussed was the concept of barriers On one hand he noted that successful people get out of dead ends quickly They see when a project won t succeed or when the team isn t right and they back out before the going gets tough But on the other hand there is a really big reward for getting through the big barriers If you are working on the right things and can get past the barriers in front of you then you can become the best in your field In addition to patters in people he also noted patters in the way the world works Through frameworks like scarcity choosing yourself a Seth concept and generosity Also the ability to take a stand for what you believe in and have a point of view Every suggestion anyone in the room made Seth continually asked what do you think Do you have a point of view All to lead us down the path of making a decision not just endless discussion Patters are good because they help you understand the issues pick precise words to describe them and communicate your ideas with the masses for change Saturday August 3rd 2013 Careers Entrepreneurship No Comments The Art of Bravery Bravery is indeed an art In the words of one of my favorite authors Seth Godin an artist is someone who uses bravery insight creativity and boldness to challenge the status quo And an artist takes it personally Having had the opportunity to work with Seth this week I agree that the message is spot on And even though may of us agree with the message at times we do still experience fear We don t always take the risk worth taking don t always push the envelope worth pushing and don t always make the call worth making Even though we know it could change everything That s why being brave is an art and not about being fearless It s about knowing fear is there and somehow figuring out how to move past it Somehow channeling your inner artist to use insight and creativity to get past what you feel right here right now It s about finding the precise words to push back when you had a point of view Connecting the dots of your intuition to speak up when you feel strongly about the issues Channeling your most visionary ideas to keep going when it seems like It s not worth going any further When we decide to allow fear in we let it become stronger We re less likely to share our generosity with the world And less likely to act even when we should On the other hand if we think bravely we have the opportunity to do something that could change everything Tuesday July 30th 2013 Careers Entrepreneurship 1 Comment Working Hard Hard Work Working Hard Today was filled with a lot of really hard work Not to be confused with the fact that we were also working hard Working hard is what we do every day For me it s usually billing more hours than I can count for weeks at a time I m sure many of my readers have similar experiences at their jobs But hard work is what we do when we work on gamechanging ideas together Bringing a team of lots of people together to discuss disjointed ideas debate different points of view mesh our worldviews and take a stand about an idea And often we are charged to do all of this without any framework structure or leaders in the group Working hard is not new We all know how to buckle down and work hard But hard work flexes an entirely different muscle Because it s difficult adapting to having more cooks in the kitchen navigating a setting where at times it might be hard to speak up or propose an idea wondering how many others are still not convinced with the concept and skeptical whether you can actually make a difference I have felt all of these things over the past day or two It always takes a lot more hard work and perhaps a lot more risk than working hard to answer these and other hard questions This is why is so important to be part of not just a talented team but also a good team Tags Entrepreneurship Teamwork Tuesday July 23rd 2013 Careers Entrepreneurship No Comments Finishing Yesterday me and my team finished a very big private equity deal that we ve been working on intensely for the last couple of weeks And today I finished another small Venture Capital deal that got a lot messier than we ever expected It got me thinking a lot about the idea of how hard it can be to finish Yesterday minutes after finishing our first deal I couldn t help but think how long the last few weeks have been A colleague of mine left the office right after the deal ended and on his way out he said thanks for all your help the past few weeks I replied thanks for all your help We both really meant it because there was so much work for us to do And in the end we were both very glad it ended well That s because there is also something profound to finishing something you started Especially when you finish strong I can t help but think of people who had to work really hard to get through college People who start in communities where many people don t graduate but still find a way to defy the odds and finish One of my mentees Jaime Limon is the perfect example Jaime went to an inner city high school in Los Angeles where about 25 of the students graduate within four years but he worked hard and went on to graduated with honors and go on to USC His struggle hasn t been easy He had to start at another University and spend some time at a community college before getting into the school of his dreams two years later Now he s working in a great summer internship in Los Angeles and will be finishing up in December Finishing takes vision focus discipline and comittment And it often takes getting up and trying again when the going gets tough I am a big fan of working harder when it gets tough defying the odds and finishing something you started Easier said than done but worth getting better at Congrats to my team for finishing strong the past few weeks And congrats to one of my clients and former MBA classmates who finished up the private equity deal on his side He ll be getting married out west this Saturday and I look forward to joining him Tags Careers education Thursday July 11th 2013 Careers Education 1 Comment From the Archives Reflecting on the 2010 2011 School Year To all of those who recently graduated from college and grad schools over the past few weeks congratulations What a important accomplishment I really do believe that Education Matters more than ever in today s world as the gap between those with and without a quality education is bigger than ever before In the spirit of graduation season and embarking upon new careers I wanted to share one of my favorite posts which comes from the archives 2010 was an interesting year Most of us left high paying banking and consulting jobs and finally decided to return to business school And what timing The financial crisis was finally starting to fade and the prospects of recovery left the business world enormously hopeful At the same time the nomination of Sally Blount as the first female Dean of Kellogg had just made business news history Many of us were excited to be back in the classroom during such interesting times especially as we knew the markets were recovering just in time to land our dream jobs at business school But one thing we didn t know is that many of us would also be scrambling in business school Many of us had to scramble to learn accounting and finance since it was our first time ever taking the classes Others of us scrambled to stay awake in DECS and MECN after spending the night before prepping for upcoming job interviews And some of us scrambled all year trying to figure out exactly what our dream job was or if that job even existed And so that leads me to the million dollar question today The one question that s been on everyone s mind since last August What is the best opportunity to pursue at Kellogg And what can I do to ensure that I maximize my success CLICK HERE to read the full post Tags Leadership Friday July 5th 2013 Business School Careers Leadership No Comments Instant Miscommunication In the age of instant gratification and communication it is almost a quintessential experience to have felt that sinking Oh no feeling of having just pressed Send on a message you should not have Or even worse getting a message where you have no idea how to interpret it Unfortunately this miscommunication happens far more often than it should The thing about miscommunication isn t that we wanted to do it Nobody does Likewise it s also not realistic to have the goal to never miscommunicate I propose that the thing that really matters is

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  • How I just completed 100 straight days of yoga - JEREMYCWILSON.COM | JEREMYCWILSON.COM
    hits a 740 on the exam In the end you keep record of what you ve achieved and start to appreciate small but important amounts of success But more important than any physical progress was the mental benefits that came with the physical ones The fact that little things didn t seem to get to me as much That I had more mental energy and focus throughout the day That things were more clear and I was more decisive and calm Seeing the progression of these benefits has been extraordinary Persistence The process of being persistent has also been a really big benefit Like studying for the GMAT LSAT preparing for the bar exam or doing anything new but difficult These things all take persistence to get through The ability to push yourself to new levels constantly And just when you reach the goal you ve set you have to do it again on another topic But mixing in the physical element makes everything even more complex During the process many things happen you learn to become OK with where you are you keep record of your improvements and start making smaller incremental goals of what you want to achieve Meanwhile pretenses about how good you are go away You learn how to be OK with where you are even if it s not where you want to be Or even if it s not as good as you were yesterday You stop comparing yourself to other people around you And in the end you become far more aware of where you want to go and what it will take to get there than ever before These feelings help you to continue persisting not just through a class but also throughout the month and for the entire 100 days Finding your edge See my blog post on this In yoga one of the most important parts of practice is finding your edge That means understanding just how far to go into a pose Because if you don t go far enough then you won t be challenged you won t get the full stretch and as a result you won t get the open heart mind or body that you want On the other hand if you go too far that increases not just the pain but also the possibility of injury And it s more likely than not that you won t make it through the full class Somewhere between these two points is the perfect balance your edge One of my favorite instructors Yasemin talked about this in two classes and I thought the idea was spot on Embracing the Pain See my blog post on this In yoga another important part of practice is the ability to embrace the pain In yoga you feel the pain in the class especially when you re new or challenge yourself to go further But by the end you feel more flexible and stronger and at the end of class feel

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  • Archive July | JEREMYCWILSON.COM
    on the hard part Ask yourself What s hard Why are you stuck What s in the way of where you are now and where you want to go And talk about it openly and honestly Then leap forward 7 Rush early not late It s better to set aggressive deadlines early To change change again and change again when you re starting out It s cheaper that way The cost of changing is lower And it s better for your peace of mind 8 Shun the skeptics There are a lot of people who won t believe in your idea no matter what They ll encourage you to give up or do something that s safe The best way to deal with skeptics is to ignore them And for the thoughtful generous skeptics the best thing to do is to understand their point of view explore why they believe what they believe and then decide what you want to do 9 Go Go Go Get to work Make things that matter Make a difference It won t happen if you don t start now Here is a video recap on the final day with tidbits from the team members from http vimeo com 72428593 Tuesday July 22nd 2014 Entrepreneurship No Comments Grace during transitions Tr ansitions are hard And often times feel awkward Between meetings at work where one meeting ends at 10AM and the next one begins at 10AM and you find yourself rushing from one meeting to the next without any time to prepare When a project at work fails And you have to tell your boss what happened before starting on the next one When you lose your job and you have to find a new one with limited time and money on your hands And in yoga when it s halfway through class and the tough postures are starting The instructor calls out one tough pose then another then another Meanwhile you re exhausted and can t imagine being graceful for one more second In life we often get wrapped up in these endpoints We want to get deeper into poses do well on our presentations ace our interviews move on to the next project or get funding four our company And we tend to focus so much on the endpoints that we forget the importance of the process Of what we can learn from our experiences What we can take with us And how gracefully we can move between the endpoints Sure periods of transition always carry with them a fear of the unknown But they also provide opportunity To do something you ve never done before To find comfort trying something you ve never tried before To learn To find balance and composure To fail gracefully and refocus your compass and radar to get closer to the right path Every big innovation that s ever existed at some point hadn t been done before Almost every best seller came after 5 books that

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  • thinks The power of the resistance has been clear throughout the entire 365 In my first class when I was afraid someone would notice I hadn t done yoga before Three months in became apparent to me when I pushed through classes to prove that I was athletic enough to get through anything A few months after that it was apparent when I wouldn t try poses because I didn t want others to see I couldn t do it perfectly yet So instead I d practice at home so nobody would see me fall And then the same thing happened with handstand I didn t try my first one until about 10 months in Even today it happens with Feathered Peacock My shoulders are naturally tight and so the pose still challenges me in ways that no other pose does so often times I won t try it in class And then again it happened on Day 366 when I decided to keep the streak going After an incredible practice on day 365 day 366 may have been the hardest day I ve had as a student I got tired and came to my knees 5 minutes into class I left class to get water and I had to take more than a few timeouts The irony is that I felt great before the class far better than the last few weeks Further the classes in the days before were far more challenging So why did I get tired this class It was mental I listened to the voice that told me I was tired even when I had more in me That told me I was finished after 365 so I didn t have to get through class today Sure we should all listen to our bodies in yoga but I was listening to my head The challenge and opportunity with yoga then is to quiet the resistance which I ve gotten a lot better at since Day 1 It s been a gift Patience Further to the point above through the yoga postures I am also learning to be more patient You have to Changes don t usually happen right away It takes time for change to settle in This is true for most things but especially when you practice yoga regularly In the beginning you see the physical changes rapidly and for me that was a great motivation to keep going But later the changes starting happening much slower and it started taking far more time and dedication Unlike many sports e g track basketball or baseball where you can measure results based on statistics and percentages your yoga practice is more fluid and harder to measure One day your body might feel great and you land a handstand but the next day you might not be as open and you might struggle with basic postures I ve had no choice but to be patient and trust the process To be patient and OK with where

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  • 365 Days of Yoga. What I learned? And why I kept going? - JEREMYCWILSON.COM | JEREMYCWILSON.COM
    didn t want others to see I couldn t do it perfectly yet So instead I d practice at home so nobody would see me fall And then the same thing happened with handstand I didn t try my first one until about 10 months in Even today it happens with Feathered Peacock My shoulders are naturally tight and so the pose still challenges me in ways that no other pose does so often times I won t try it in class And then again it happened on Day 366 when I decided to keep the streak going After an incredible practice on day 365 day 366 may have been the hardest day I ve had as a student I got tired and came to my knees 5 minutes into class I left class to get water and I had to take more than a few timeouts The irony is that I felt great before the class far better than the last few weeks Further the classes in the days before were far more challenging So why did I get tired this class It was mental I listened to the voice that told me I was tired even when I had more in me That told me I was finished after 365 so I didn t have to get through class today Sure we should all listen to our bodies in yoga but I was listening to my head The challenge and opportunity with yoga then is to quiet the resistance which I ve gotten a lot better at since Day 1 It s been a gift Patience Further to the point above through the yoga postures I am also learning to be more patient You have to Changes don t usually happen right away It takes time for change to settle in This is true for most things but especially when you practice yoga regularly In the beginning you see the physical changes rapidly and for me that was a great motivation to keep going But later the changes starting happening much slower and it started taking far more time and dedication Unlike many sports e g track basketball or baseball where you can measure results based on statistics and percentages your yoga practice is more fluid and harder to measure One day your body might feel great and you land a handstand but the next day you might not be as open and you might struggle with basic postures I ve had no choice but to be patient and trust the process To be patient and OK with where my edge might be on any given day The good news is that patience and calmness has had a way of seeping into other things For me and most people I talk to it helps with our jobs our reactions with family members interactions with significant others and yoga partners I haven t always been naturally patient but the last 365 days have done wonders for me and for

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