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January 2022 Spotlight on Flex

Our Spotlight on Flex showcases professionals from member organizations who exemplify personal and professional success while working a flexible schedule. Their stories illustrate the long-term benefits that flexible schedules offer to both individuals and organizations.

For our January 2022 Spotlight on Flex we are pleased to share insights from Jessamine Lee, Shareholder, Wolf, Greenfield & Sacks, P.C.

Diversity & Flexibility Alliance: How have you made flexibility a priority and a success with your schedule? How has the firm and/or your clients contributed to this?

Jessamine Lee: Flexibility has been a key to my success at Wolf Greenfield.  After coming back to work from having my first child 11 years ago, I went on an 80% schedule. I was a junior associate at the time. I stayed on an 80-90% schedule through having my second child three years later and then becoming Counsel and a Shareholder at the firm.  During that same time, I also had a flexible arrangement in which I worked remotely twice a week.  The firm was supportive of my requests and made it possible for me to have this alternative work arrangement during a time when it was not common to do so.  I had a lot of help from my colleagues. For example, at times when my workload was too high, I was able to transfer work to other colleagues who had more bandwidth at the time.  This is a testament to Wolf Greenfield’s collegiality and culture – we work as a team.  I also set boundaries, made expectations clear to both my colleagues and clients as to when I was available, and inquired about firm and client expectations as well.  Of course, there were times when urgent projects needed to get done, but for the most part everyone was respectful of these boundaries and I was able to meet the expectations of those I worked with.

 

Our Spotlight on Flex showcases professionals from member organizations who exemplify personal and professional success while working a flexible schedule. Their stories illustrate the long-term benefits that flexible schedules offer to both individuals and organizations.

February 2021 Spotlight on Flex

For our February Spotlight on Flex, we’re pleased to highlight Chelsea Witte-Garcia, PhD, Associate, Wolf Greenfield. 

Diversity & Flexibility Alliance: How have you made flexibility a priority and a success with your schedule? How has the firm and/or clients contributed to this?

Chelsea Witte-Garcia: I joined Wolf Greenfield seven and a half years ago in the firm’s Technology Specialist Training Program. As part of this program, I went to evening law school and was working an 80% schedule. I had done a full PhD program prior to joining the firm and had my first child during law school, so I had been extremely busy and was dealing with being a new parent. Once I took the bar exam and became an Associate, I knew I needed some flexibility. Instead of transitioning to a full-time Associate schedule, I moved to a 90% reduced hour schedule. While a 10% reduction in billable hours may not seem like a lot, to me it alleviated a lot of billing pressure and allowed time for other non-billable activities. Having that slight reduction in my annual billable hours frees up time for a personal break as well as other work-related activities such as business development, writing, or presenting at firm training sessions.

Wolf Greenfield, and in particular the Biotechnology Practice Group, has been at the forefront of appreciating flexibility. We had the opportunity to set up a home office long before COVID 19. The leadership really understood that not everyone wants the traditional career path. I’ve really appreciated that they’ve put a lot of time and investment in training individuals and they see your value, even if the day-to-day looks a bit different.

In a client-driven industry, there are always times when our jobs are unpredictable. I’m committed to being accessible and adaptable, particularly when there’s an urgent client need. I think clients appreciate that. We also leverage a very talented team of people that can pull together to meet clients’ needs. This can also be a valuable training opportunity for junior group members.