Schenck, Price, Smith & King understands that associates are vitally important to its current and future success. There is a strong community of interest between partners and associates regarding associate training and development.
Associates at Schenck, Price, Smith & King are treated with dignity, respect and appreciation. Furthermore, the Firm believes that associates should be trained and developed into outstanding lawyers. The Firm believes that all attorneys are entitled to know what is expected of them so that they can focus and prioritize their efforts.
Like many firms, Schenck, Price, Smith & King draws upon the experience and teaching abilities of its attorneys in organizing seminars, tutorials and other exercises for all practice areas. In addition, all departments hold regular educational meetings to discuss current developments and practice areas. Furthermore, the Firm actively supports the pursuit of continuing legal education on the part of its attorneys, and has an Education Committee that focuses exclusively on associate development.
As noted earlier, the Firm maintains a collegial approach to its practice and encourages all attorneys to discuss relevant legal and business issues on an informal basis. The Firm sponsors attorney luncheons and other formal and informal gatherings within the Firm overall and within specific departments as an effort to address new practice developments. Additionally, Department Chairs and other attorneys circulate memoranda, new court decisions and other relevant information to interested attorneys on a regular basis.
In an effort to provide assistance and encouragement to all associates, all associates are assigned a partner to act as a mentor or preceptor. Each associate spends approximately one year with his or her mentor or preceptor and then is assigned a new mentor or preceptor.
Mentors meet periodically with associates to discuss any and all matters affecting their lives at the Firm. In many cases, the relationship between an associate and a mentor extends beyond the usual twelve-month period and continues informally, and the mentor often remains a source of general advice on career matters in subsequent years.
Associates receive formal reviews once a year. In addition, we provide each first-year associate with an informal annual review midway through the year. Preceptors are particularly active in the formal annual review process. These reviews are based upon the submission of detailed review forms by all partners and a discussion of all written evaluations undertaken by the Associate Review Committee. In these reviews, we encourage a dialogue about the associate's career, the Firm's expectations of the associate and other work-related issues.
In addition to the annual review, the Firm asks all Department chairpersons and supervising lawyers to provide ongoing feedback to associates with whom they are working.