For associates considering a move and judicial clerks seeking to further their careers in private practice, ask yourself one simple question before selecting a firm: where will I get the support and exposure necessary to become a truly exceptional lawyer?
Cozen O’Connor is absolutely committed to creating the next generation of leaders of the legal profession. To accomplish that goal, our firm offers developing attorneys a combination of rigorous training and hands-on experience that is unmatched among large, international firms.
Cozen O’Connor is a young, entrepreneurial firm. In just four decades, we have grown from a dozen attorneys in Philadelphia to an Am Law 100 firm with more than 750 attorneys in 26 offices across two continents. We have been able to achieve such impressive growth by cultivating a strong entrepreneurial spirit. The firm is avowedly non-bureaucratic, unromantic about convention, and unconstrained by the simplistic calculus of hierarchy. For associates, this means, if you can handle the work, it will be given to you. If you are ready for major responsibility, it is yours for the taking.
Because of the types of clients we serve, we are able to follow a staffing model that affords associates an unusual amount of responsibility. In addition to Fortune 500s and blue chips, Cozen O’Connor represents a large number of entrepreneurial clients – startups, venture-backed firms, closely held enterprises, and mid-sized companies poised for growth. These clients understand that high-level legal matters should not be handled by armies of under-supervised associates. We staff in tight teams of dedicated attorneys, each of whom has a significant role and close contact with senior counsel.
As a junior litigator at Cozen O’Connor, you will develop case strategy, take critical depositions, draft pleadings, motions and complaints, and second-chair hearings, trials, and proceedings. As a junior business lawyer at Cozen O’Connor, you will design deal structure, coordinate diverse parties, consult with experts, and participate in key discussions and formal negotiations. You will undertake these activities much earlier in your career than you might at many other large firms.
In both litigation and transactions, we make sure that associates have direct contact with the firm’s most important clients. We believe that it is necessary for every member of a team to have a strong connection with the client in order for our firm to deliver the highest level of service. Associates are also expected to confer with judges, opposing counsel, regulators, and the press. Learning to communicate effectively with each of these constituencies is core to a junior lawyer’s continuing legal education.
The firm also provides leadership opportunities through our secondment and pro bono programs. During a secondment, an associate works in a client’s office for a period of months in order to become enmeshed in the day-to-day operations. Likewise, associates are encouraged to accept and lead pro bono matters, which can provide invaluable experience first chairing a litigation or leading a negotiation from inception to conclusion.
At Cozen O’Connor, we understand the value of informal mentorship and formal professional development. Because of our staffing model, associates have unusual access to senior attorneys, which facilitates development of the kind of organic mentoring relationships that have been shown time and again to be the most valuable. The firm also provides formal training and leadership programming to impart practical information about everything from billing procedures to building a book of business.
Finally, we believe the culture of the firm is ideally suited to helping associates take their careers to the next level. Cozen O’Connor was founded by young, ambitious lawyers who were unafraid to challenge the legal establishment. And Cozen O’Connor has grown so remarkably because it continues to recruit and promote energetic associates who are willing to challenge themselves and this firm to achieve even greater success.