Summer wanes, the harvest abounds, and we ready ourselves for a return to our higher-octane existences. New beginnings, new chapters, and for those of us observing Rosh Hashanah, a new year begins with contemplation and taking stock of the year gone by.
It is also a time to reflect on and appreciate the people in our lives, personal and professional, whose contributions and presence have made a difference.
In that spirit, I will firstly say thank you to my Tips partner, David Bilinsky, for inviting me to join him here in collaboration, discussions and debates on “all things law practice.” It’s been about a year since I jumped aboard the Slaw train, and I’d also like to thank Simon Fodden for apparently determining that my presence here wasn’t so bad an idea, after all.
Who are some of the other people in our lives who deserve our professional thanks? Here is my short list:
- Our associates and staff, without whom it would be impossible to function and who make us look good, day-in and day-out
- Those finicky court office clerks who let you file the occasional document a bit after the official deadline
- Our bookkeepers and accountants who toil away and keep our law societies happy
- Our bar associations, regulators and leading legal thinkers like Jordan Furlong and Mitchell Kowalski, all of whom have demonstrated an increasing awareness of the importance to our profession of innovation and being ahead of the curve
- The people who manufacture our smartphones and apps and software, whose collective efforts make our working lives a little bit easier and our non-working lives a little more fun every day
- Judges who speak out about the challenges facing the administration of justice in Canada
- Our spouses, partners, families and friends who stand by us, tolerate our schedules, and give us strength to carry on in this very challenging profession
- Our clients, for they choose us out of the seemingly infinite options for representation that are always only a Google search away. Those we may have unintentionally disappointed, for the lessons they will always teach in the feedback we don’t always want to receive, and those we have pleased who have let us know they recognized our effort and commitment to their successes and causes.
- Our colleagues and opposition, for making us better with the standards of professionalism, ethical practice and sheer brain power they model and demonstrate in virtually every encounter.
- Our online followers, readers and friends, who enrich our daily existences with their virtual insights, shared-treasures, and general schtick.
So today’s tip, coming to you on the eve of this Jewish New Year 5774, is contemplate and appreciate.
(It’s a work-life balance thing, too).
– Garry J. Wise, Toronto