Sunday, November 23, 2008

LAWYERS' PETITION FOR A 10-HOUR WEEKEND

An open letter to the Managing Profit-Sharing Partners of Brightgold & Billings, LLP, Attorneys at Law specializing in antitrust litigation

Dear Sirs,

We write to you as your humble associate servants. For 3100 hours per year, we conduct legal research for you, write memos, organize files, make copies, sit at depositions, update docket sheets and eat lunch at our desks while listening in to conference calls. We are proud legal professionals, and we are pleased to serve the financial interests of Brightgold & Billings, even if that means withholding material information from the securities markets or governmental investigators. Our loyalties lie squarely with the firm. Our billing records and timesheets prove it. We are always here. We are always billing. And we are doing it all for you.

We take seriously the firm's motto: "When losing is not an Option®." We are not afraid to work from 5 in the morning until 1 the following morning for three weeks straight in order to secure an injunction for your clients. We are not afraid to work on Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter Sunday or New Year's Day. We don't take vacations; but if we do, we take work with us. We don't sleep to make sure you don't lose. Your clients' money matters; that is why we never stop working. At the risk of mental illness, suicide, gastrointestinal injury, depression, anxiety disorders, heart attack, obesity and high blood pressure, we stay in the office through the weekend. We ensure that every color-coded sheet is correctly placed in every filed brief. We ensure that your case citations conform to accepted citation format. And we meet every deadline you set--every time.

In a word, we are your dedicated servants. Our track record speaks for itself. We would never abandon you. Nonetheless, we confess that we are tired. In that light, we humbly request no more than 10 hours off per weekend. We realize that this is a very bold request. We fully respect the fact that the firm's business can never wait, and we are prepared to hear that you cannot grant our request. Rest assured that if you decide that you cannot grant us 10 hours off per weekend, we will in no way feel resentment or disappointment. We will continue to render you the same, unswerving service that you have come to expect from us.

Please bear in mind that our request does not stem from laziness. Rather, we sincerely believe that approximately 10 hours' rest per weekend will freshen our minds to the extent necessary to ensure maximal productivity once we return to work. We venture to suggest that granting us a few hours off may actually be in your financial interest, because we will be able to achieve more with rested minds. True, we will not be billing for up to 10 hours per weekend. But if we are rested, we will produce more tangible benefit to the firm during our billing hours.

We welcome your suggestions concerning our request. We are amenable to any compromise you may propose. For example, you may ask that we take our time off during traditionally quiet periods, such as Sunday evenings between 7 PM and 5 AM. You may also ask that we take no time off during firm emergencies, such as filing a summary judgment brief or preparing an SEC report. We are completely open to such modifications. We emphasize that you should in no way consider our request to reflect a rebellious spirit. We remain your humblest and most loyal legal servants. Our loyalty to you demands that we advise you that our service has made us tired. We want to continue serving you 24 hours a day, plus holidays. Yet without a little rest, we will be unable to deliver the maximum client satisfaction you have come to expect. We believe in winning as much as you do. But to keep winning, even champions need a few hours off the field.

We hope that you will understand this letter for what it is: A humble request from humble servants. In the everyday crush of business, it is sometimes difficult to know what lower-level employees are thinking. Indeed, we recognize that you have much more important things to worry about during the day, including golf outings with clients and preparing monthly travel expense sheets. You are entitled to assume that your servants will attend to your business with the same zeal and vigor that they have always shown. Still, we believe that it is important to understand your servants' needs from time to time. To be truthful, we do not have many needs. We can tell you candidly, however, that our primary need is to ensure your total financial success. To fulfill that need, you need the best team. The best teams occasionally need rest. Thus, we seek approximately 10 hours off per weekend end in order to continue to be the best team. We believe that 10 hours per weekend will provide us the reprieve we need to remain your best possible servants.

Thank you for your time and consideration. Again, if you choose to say no, we will not feel disappointed or resentful. We will continue to provide top-notch client service as we always have, fully consistent with firm business growth and financial goals.

Yours sincerely, truly, gratefully, humbly, loyally and in full knowledge of your superior station,

Curtis A. Bummlicker, Esq.,
Associate Attorney (Specializing in Antitrust Defense; J.D., summa cum laude Harvard University (2007), Order of the Coif, Best Oralist) on behalf of the Associates and Junior Non-Profit-Sharing Partners of Brightgold & Billings, LLP.

2 comments:

SteveW said...

No.

Because you asked with proper deference, I'm even going to keep you on the production bonus program, although I must admit this request is going to ding you on the soft-and-squishy bonus program and will probably have to be considered in your partner review.

By the way - where were you when I texted last night at 1:30 needing an update on that deposition? When I checked my e-mail at 10, the time stamp showed you didn't respond until 5 AM.

Hope you had a Happy Thanksgiving! Remember our other motto - People First!(R)

Balthazar Oesterhoudt said...

Wonderful response! Thanks for posting; it fits right in with the tone.