My first LP was Rio by Duran Duran. At least, that’s what I like to tell people, conveniently overlooking the Bucks Fizz album I had bought a year earlier. Before then most, if not all, of the music I listened to was recorded onto cassette tapes from Sunday night’s Top 40 on Radio 1, complete with inane voiceovers and sudden pauses. To be honest, I can’t remember if I bought it in HMV, but I know I didn’t buy it on the internet because it barely existed.
People who know me know that I am not afraid to cry. Sometimes it doesn’t take much: watching my daughter skipping in the garden, burning the dinner, stubbing my toe, kittens playing (ok, that’s probably an exaggeration). But on the whole I don’t get emotional about adverts, unless they are for John Lewis, which, I believe, are designed to induce sobs from even the hardest of hearts.
It has long been apparent to anyone with an ounce of business sense that, by and large, partnerships are not the best way to run a company. There are, naturally, exceptions and I am not going to take issue with the profitability of the ‘magic circle’ firms that would be eligible for inclusion in the FTSE100 were they to have publicly traded shares. They have all said, however, they would not seek to float. There are probably many reasons for this, most of which I couldn’t hope to understand. But I bet one of them is because the partners of those firms rather like being partners in those firms.
So this will (probably) be my last blog post of 2011, just over a year since I wrote my first one on the Legal Futures website (which you should read if you don’t, the website that is, not my post). I was inspired to write because I was fed up with just sighing loudly and shaking my head at the absurd reporting of a survey suggesting most, if not all, high street law firms would come out of the ABS mangle alive. One year on, sadly, not much has changed with the way many lawyers think about the changes taking place in the legal market. Lots else has though.
My favourite blog post of the week was in the Harvard Business Review (HBR), not normally somewhere I hang out but worth it on this occasion. The author admitted that in about half of his business conversations he had ‘almost no idea what other people are saying’. He goes on to say that when he was younger, if he didn’t understand what people were saying, he assumed he was stupid. He now realises it’s the other people who are stupid for not ensuring he can understand them.
When I was at school I very distinctly remember being told that ‘the world was my oyster’ and I could be whatever and whoever I wanted to be. I imagine that similar messages intended to inspire young women are given out today – I will certainly be encouraging my daughter to reach for the stars (not necessarily literally). What they didn’t tell me, as possibilities raced through my mind, was that I could do whatever I wanted, but I shouldn’t expect to get paid as much as a man.