A successful attorney has 15% to do with legal knowledge and 85% with that of his ability to deal with people. Commercial Attorney’s primitive responsibility is to ensure that their client’s business transactions are in compliance with the law. They research the law implicated by that transaction and advise their client of any negative effects it might create, in future. In addition to their regular duties, attorneys ensure that their client’s legal decisions spell out to a strong bottom line.
The diversity of the role requires a strong background in a variety of areas. Corporate law experience is beneficial along with knowledge and general experience in business and the corporation’s industry. Holding administrative skills, managerial skills, negotiating, writing, interpersonal skills and soft skills are a blessing. Corporate lawyers work in quick-paced work-structure. Meetings with board members and management occupy part of their time where they are called upon to strategize and offer legal as well as business advice.
Highly desirable skills of commercial attorneys apart from their legal knowledge-
- Business & financial sensitivity
Corporate lawyers must have a varied skill set, including business and financial sensitivity. It is imperative for corporate lawyers to understand the business effect of any legal decisions they make on behalf of their clients.
Commercial awareness boils down to understanding people's or businesses' desires and motives, and how to achieve them. If you cannot understand your clients' (be they corporations, small businesses or individuals) motivations, goals and constraints, your advice on how they should act is going to be worthless.
- Art of Negotiation
Corporate lawyers must be skilled negotiators because they need to bargain on several matters covering distinct fields. Such negotiation is done behalf of their clients. “Lead & bow- according to the requirement” is the rule for effective negotiation.
- Academic ability
You’ve got to be reasonably clever in academic sense. You need to have the ability to analyze and process information, draw inferences and make conclusions. Showing others how clever you require major displaying. But academic success is only half the story, beyond your grades on paper, they also want to see a host of other qualities that set you apart.
- Demonstrative acumen
Attorneys should be fair enough in not shying away from highlighting the bits where they looked really brainy. Another tack is the ability to talk coherently and compellingly about current affairs, which means showing that you have background knowledge, can understand context and draw rational conclusions. Initiative and responsibility demonstrate more than anything.
- Detailing and determination
Lawyers do detail. Lawyers spot and resolve omissions and commissions. Proof reading comes naturally to them, but they still check again. Show that you have gone to the depth with a web of material and reached the finest outcome.
Legal fraternity involves lots of work, lots of boring bits, lots of pressure and perhaps some out-of-touch senior colleague or client shouting at you at some point. This should all be grist in your mill as you display a superb track record of getting things done.
- Communication skills
There's no point in being clever, driven and attentive if you can't let others know what you are thinking or suggesting, communicate with confidence. Communication skills have made a material difference to a situation. Understanding between clients & co-workers become essential as communication is the key.
- Collaboration skills
A good commercial lawyer must have collaboration skills. It is not just about working well with others. More importantly, it is about having the ability to function in an environment where there may be other lawyer collaborators to work with. It is a skill meant to be practiced.
- Teamwork and leadership
Merely being intellectually rigorous, detailed, argumentative does not help. Cooperation and collaboration gives better results too. Teamwork brings in more creativity and gives each member a chance to shine.
- Work experience
The chances are you already have many of the above skills and the tough part is coming up with the evidence for them, the richest pickings may well come from the work and work experience you have encountered. This implies two things; first, you must get some sort of proper work to put on your applications. If nothing else it demonstrates that you understand what it means to turn up on time each day and put in a proper shift.
- Language skills
While not essential, this will help your application stand out. In effective communication, whether among colleagues or between clients, language should never be a barrier.
- Legal research
Researching brings major onus of going to the depth in each matter keeping in mind the amount of money involved. Compliance with the most recent laws, notifications, rules and regulations habitually is significant to be a successful commercial attorney.
- Legal writing
Apart from researching skills, writing is also a must-have quality, excellent writers to communicate with clients, in courts
- Emotional intelligence
It is a highly needed skill of every commercial lawyer. A lawyer that can show a personal connection to the job that he does is someone who can give his client a clear understanding of the case and aims at becoming successful at what he does.
- Except for the above, many qualities like high ethical standards, understanding of the role of law, Self confidence, good interpersonal skills and motivation reveal a high level of achievement.
A commercial lawyer's practice covers varied areas from financial services, energy and infrastructure, consumer and retail, digital, health and life sciences, Insurance & Risk Management Investment Banking to industry and transport, Entrepreneurship & Start Ups, Journalism & Publishing, Pharmaceuticals, Public Sector & Government, Technology: Consulting & Project Management and Technology: IT & Software Development.
Typically they undertake a wide variety of work. As a result, clients often range from sole traders and start-ups to large companies, MNCs and global financial institutions, all of whom require their commercial lawyers to have a deep understanding of both their individual business and the markets in which they operate.