After fielding hundreds of calls & emails focused solely on Corporate Connections, thought it time to share this with everyone.
Corporate Connections is just one part of the CMCP Annual Business Conference...
The entire conference is one huge opportunity to connect.
When in-house at Wells Fargo, I made the best, most productive connections at conference sessions, during the breaks and at the receptions -- and I gave or referred more business to those I met during the conference than I did those with whom I had Corporate Connections interviews.
Whether or not you registered for Corporate Connections, and whether you have one, several or no pre-scheduled interviews...
Attend the entire conference, and take advantage of all the opportunities CMCP provides in just 1-1/2 days. A few highlights...
The GC Reception Oct 5, 5:30-7:30pm -- A casual time for attendees to mix & mingle; to begin, renew or enhance relationships.
The "Walmart Session" Oct 6, 10:00-11:00am -- Drop-in & join the Dialogue on Diversity hosted by Mike Bennett, Walmart SVP & General Counsel of Litigation.
The Breakout Sessions Oct 5, 2:15-3:30pm, and the All Rise: Advocacy in Action Plenary Session Oct 5, 4:00-5:30pm -- See your colleagues in action. Enhance your knowledge. A great opportunity for in-house lawyers to see outside counsel prospects doing their job versus making a pitch.
The Awards Lunch Oct 6, 12:15-2:00pm -- Hear an inspiring keynote speaker, Michele Coleman Mayes, Allstate GC. Sit with people you don't know. You may be surprised by who is sitting next to you.
Conference breaks -- Put down the phone. Stop checking email. This is your time of opportunity. Meet as many people as you can.
Outside Counsel -- remember that lawyers in other firms are a referral source of business, and some even go in-house one day
In-House Counsel -- you just might meet that great lawyer who fits a need you didn't consider when designated interview practice areas
Everyone -- the more people you know, the stronger you build relationships, the more you enhance your own career opportunities
At a prior conference, an African-American law firm associate stood with a friend during a break. A woman walked up; the mutual friend introduced them. That woman was a General Counsel. She asked the associate about her work. They spoke for awhile, mostly not about work. After which the General Counsel suggested they continue the dialogue after the conference. They did; the associate brought a new client & significant business into her firm -- all because she was at the conference & engaged.
A law firm partner told me recently he was very involved with CMCP as an associate & wants to get more involved again, even though he never got business from CMCP. I asked how he knew that. He thought for a moment & corrected his statement to say he never got work directly from a Corporate Connections interview, but CMCP provided him, as a young Latino lawyer, a place in which to meet a wide variety of attorneys at all levels, from law firms & companies, many of whom are now in-house senior managers, judges and other influential people who either give or refer him work. It all links back to participating in CMCP activities.
In the hallways, at the receptions, wherever you are -- there are connections to be made. But you can't connect if you're not present.
And be sure to meet your CMCP staff. Creating access & opportunity for minority lawyers is what we do all year long. We look forward to seeing you at the Conference. Until then, all the best...
And p.s. to those who registered for Corporate Connections -- please do read the following information.
Some very important Corporate Connections information:
CMCP cannot promise any law firm attorney a Corporate Connections interview slot, or any in-house attorney that we will have matches meeting the specified interview criteria.
Matches are made after conference registration closes. We do our best to make good matches based on the information each attorney provides at registration. We honor the wishes of both outside counsel & in-house counsel in the match process. Each in-house attorney sets his/her interview parameters, e.g., practice areas, geography, firm size, and "Do Not Match" list. Each law firm attorney designates his/her practice areas and "Do Not Match" list. CMCP staff works hard to find matches for everyone, and will try to contact participants where appropriate to see if match criteria can be adjusted. But that isn't always possible.
If you registered for Corporate Connections, CMCP will send you an email with your matches or letting you know you have no matches by September 30, 2011. Please help us get this done as quickly as possible -- do not call or email inquiring about your matches before the 30th.
Interviews are Thursday October 6, 2011, 9:30am - 12:05pm, 2nd floor of the conference hotel. If you have matches, the email will include your interview times with the law firm name (for in-house counsel) or company name (for outside counsel), and the applicable practice area. Interview room assignments will be available on October 6th at the Corporate Connections Desk in the Caucus Room Hallway.
Attend the Corporate Connections Welcome Session Oct. 6, 9:00-9:20am for tips on making the most of these 15 minute interviews.
IMPORTANT OUTSIDE COUNSEL REMINDER: Corporate Connections are made on a per firm (not individual attorney) basis. Each law firm needs to coordinate with its registered conference attorneys to decide who attends a scheduled interview.
CRITICAL INFORMATION FOR ALL CORPORATE & LAW FIRM PARTICIPANTS: This is your opportunity. Take the time to do it right. Read "Making Corporate Connections Work for You", together with the Ten Commandments of Corporate Connections for Outside Counsel and the Five Fabulous Facts of Corporate Connections for In-House Counsel: Click Here
Copyright 2011 California Minority Counsel Program