Post # 1
Let me start off my saying I am no longer a bride to be; I am a happy wife. I’m talking about making this work with the company I am currently at. I started here as a receptionist and overflow legal assistant and I was very happy. I was taking some paralegal classes and seeking a career as a paralegal. Flash forward 2.5 years. My office manager tells me I am being “promoted” (no raise) to work for someone I just didn’t click with (ok, I hate him.) Morale was low. Flash forward a few more months. I become a national certified paralegal, and even though the company needs a paralegal (our paralegal just passed the bar and got promoted), my boss is holding me back and (it seems) trying to prevent me from moving forward. So, I sent my office manager an email expressing my frustrations (because I spent a lot of time and my own money on getting certified, and the firm was well aware of my career goals). She then forwarded it to the big boss (my boss’ boss), and it seemed that he agreed with her. Unfortunately, even though I was very clear, and my office manager was very clear, I am still working for this guy I hate, AND they are giving me time consuming paralegal work (and not enough money). I feel like I need to just cut my losses and move on, but I REALLY like everyone else in the office (so much that I invited them to my wedding.)
Post # 3
- Wedding: January 2013 - Harbourfront Grand Hall
@frustratedbridetobe: So the boss’s boss agreed… then what happened? They did nothing?
I’d send an email to both boss’s boss and office manager again and ask if they’d thought any more about advancing your position.
Post # 4
@frustratedbridetobe: Hello, iam also a State Certified Paralegal too and i started out also as a receptionist 10 years ago, and the firm where i used to work knew that i was going to school for this and knew that i wanted more for myself, career wise and money wise, but they left me at the front desk even after i graduated as a Paralegal. Its frustrating for sure. I understand what you are going through, so I left the company and because i was sooo mad i didn’t even give them notice, one day i just decided not to show up, that’s all….You have to do what works for you and what’s best for you, so if you have to look somewhere else, do it, otherwise you are not going to grow. I now work for a firm that always lets me grow and the money is excellet…i’ve been here for 7 years now….GL and best wishes.
Post # 5
@frustratedbridetobe: If you have no tuition reimbursement time obligation to the company, then start looking for a paralegal job at another company ASAP!
Post # 6
How long has it been since you emailed them about your frustrations?
Is there any way you can talk to someone in person? (Sometimes that helps them get things done faster.)
Post # 7
As an employee you should always know your worth. If you are doing the work as a paralegal then you should be paid accordingly for it.
My advice to you is to fix up your resume and start quietly sending it around. If you see interest and job opening in your area and think it’s highly likly that you find other employement then you should explore that. If you get job offers go back to your company tell them about your job offer, then express that you love the company and after all these years you prefer to stay with them and move up in the company. Then tell them you nned a firm answer by a certain date.
Then the ball is in thier court. But I think eventually if they don’t offer you the job then you should move on.
Post # 8
@frustratedbridetobe: Some companies are really weird about promoting from within. They get an image of you in one position and can’t see you in another. Or maybe they feel you’re too valuable in your current position, so they don’t want to lose that. Either way, once you discover your company is like that, polish up your resume and move on. There are nice people at every job, so work-friends are no reason to stay stuck with a company that doesn’t value you or treat you fairly.
Post # 9
@alaska_99705: I emailed them a week ago and had a sit down with my office manager. The only one dragging his feet is my direct supervisor.
Post # 10
A lot of times, the only way you get the raise you deserve is by leaving.
There are other jobs with other cool people. I recommend you find one, stat! The best part? Once you’re not working with the current people, they can become more true friends, since you can be totally open about work politics without fear of anything getting back to your boss.
Post # 11
UPDATE: I was pulled into the conference room to discuss my position. My boss patronised me in front of three of my coworkers, and told me it would take at least a year before I could get out from under him and be a paraegal for the whole office, but that the former paralegal could train me. He didn’t know that I was capable of a number of things (thank God my coworkers came to my defense) even though a lot of these things are things that I do for him on a regular basis. He also didn’t know I was capable of legal research. My thoughts: he is playing dumb so he can pigeon-hole me into being his assistant as a career. If I truly felt like I could speak my mind, I would have asked if it was really worth my while to get certified. My strategy: learn as much as I can from former paralegal, and get out of there. I’m capable of dealing with sharks, but I can’t handle working for a snake.
Post # 12
@frustratedbridetobe: I think your strategy makes sense. Good luck!
P.S. Your boss sounds like an ass.
Post # 13
I agree with your decision. I am an attorney and I can tell you we do NOT treat our paralegals, secretaries, or receptionists with such disrespect as you have endured, and no one should! Your boss sounds like a power hungry ass (trust me, I’ve met a lot of those in this line of work), and I would get out of there as soon as possible if you can’t get the position you want in a different firm. The job market may be horrible for attorneys right now, but there are always paralegal jobs to be found, and you’ll be better off STARTING as a paralegal in a different firm. That way your job description will be more defined, and you’ll be paid appropriately. You are worth more than you are being treated in your current job! You should absolutely be making more as a paralegal than as a receptionist.
So sorry to hear about your situation. I promise not all attorneys are assholes lol! I hope everything works out for you!
Post # 14
@LilliePad: Thanks for your reply! It’s good to know that not all attorneys are assholes. Actually, there are quite a few in my current firm that are great. I just happened to get the narcissistic jerk/snake. That’s kind of why I talked to my office manager–because I know that I could be working for someone else, and I would be a lot happier. I guess this guy goes through secretaries pretty fast. You’d think the company would realize what is going on.
Post # 15
@frustratedbridetobe: Unfortunately, most firms only care about how much money an attorney brings in. If he’s billing tons and tons of hours and getting them clients, he could be the biggest jackass in the world and they’d still keep him around. It’s pretty sad, that’s why I go out of my way to make sure our secretaries and paralegals are appreciated, because they ARE! We couldn’t do out jobs without them. Some attorneys are just power hungry and treat anyone with less experience than them as complete idiots just to make themselves feel better. It’s sad, really. Stand your ground and don’t let it fall through the cracks. The squeaky wheel gets the oil!
Post # 16
@frustratedbridetobe: As someone who is in a similiar situation, I agree with your plan. I work for approximately five attorneys right now (inlcuding one major asshole who I am not supposed to be working for at all) and I’m still making 4$ per hour less than I should. They won’t acknowledge the fact that I am a paralegal and I’m just generally frustrated.
Hopefully jobs are better where you are, because I’m having a hard time finding anything at this point.
@LilliePad: I’m also glad to hear that not all attorneys are jerks. Out of the five I’m currently working with, I really only think one appreciates the fact that I do everything for him. He is really fantastic.