Sullivan attorneys work hard; there's no getting around it. But we also recognize that the people who work here are multi-dimensional individuals, each with civic, family and personal obligations. We do our best to create a balanced work environment, and offer both family leave time and part-time schedules. We enjoy the company of our colleagues and their families, and host several social events throughout the year. Because in addition to being excellent lawyers, we know a thing or two about having fun. You'll see our lawyers running marathons, starring in local theatre productions, organizing charity events, participating in weekend cycling, leading girl scout groups, coaching sports teams, scuba diving, sailing boats, and organizing college alumni groups.
We have resisted the trend among major law firms to require immediate specialization by new associates. Instead, first-year associates at Sullivan participate in a rotation program – exposing our associates to a broad range of disciplines, specialty areas and training. First-year associates spend 2 to 3 months in each of our major Departments – Corporate, Litigation, Real Estate and Tax. This allows our first-year associates the opportunity to gain exposure to our different practice areas within these Departments, and work with associates and partners throughout our firm. The goal of the rotation program is to enrich and expose our associates to different areas of legal discipline and clients, developing them into well-rounded and highly-skilled lawyers.
The program is closely monitored and supervised by a partner and the head of our talent management team. This ensures that each first-year associate is receiving the appropriate mentoring and training required for each discipline, as well as the necessary tools and feedback they need to be successful for each rotation and beyond. At the end of the rotation program, first-year associates work with their supervisors to select the discipline in which they would like to concentrate.
Upon arrival at Sullivan, first-year associates spend one to two weeks in our comprehensive First Year Academy – an intensive training experience designed to help first-years quickly develop the practical skills required for success from one’s first year throughout one’s entire career. From the nuts and bolts of how to review a commercial lease to knowing how to structure a closing to leveraging Sullivan's litigation support technology, first-years master the basics quickly and emerge poised for success. Upon completion of First Year Academy, first-years are ready not only to take on assignments, but also to participate in department meetings, in substantive and skills training classes and in external continuing legal education programming.
After the first year, we have an excellent retention rate for our associates. We hire associates with the expectation that one day they will be partners at our firm.
Learning is a career-long adventure. At Sullivan, we support your development at all levels by providing top-notch learning and development tools and resources, and our career development program is dedicated to helping you choose which opportunities to seize. Our focus on your individual career development is second-to-none.
Every professional development resource Sullivan offers is tied to our Core Competencies, a set of skills that defines a successful Sullivan attorney. Training classes are crafted to support achievement in at least one competency, and usually multiple competencies, and mentoring programs are designed to promote similar achievement. Evaluations of associates at the junior and mid-levels, and evaluations of senior associates and counsel, are tied directly to the competencies. This structure not only ensures maximum transparency, but also best enables associates to take charge of their own success.
We value each associate as an individual, and work we work very hard to ensure that our associates feel as though there is a path to a long and fulfilling career at Sullivan.