I think that immigration is definitely an area of fierce competition. It’s a high-demand, high-growth field; there are lots of people who want to get into it. The other thing about immigration law is the fact that you really have to be very good at what you do in order to thrive in this business. I think because so few lawyers go into the practice, being well thought of by your peers is important for moving up within the industry. You need clients and colleagues who know you can help them with their cases or issues they might have over time. If someone thinks highly of you, then more often than not they will come back asking for your services again and again—that’s how referrals work!
Once upon a time I was asked to make recommendations as part of an executive search committee looking for both board members and managing directors at one law firm here in New York City. At first glance my team came up short on several fronts: we didn’t have enough senior women on staff (women were only 27 percent represented among our partners), nor did we have enough diversity overall (a broad range but still disproportionately white men). When push came to shove though, my partners almost always hired me themselves instead of relying on those recommendations from others brought forward by the search committee chairperson herself! And this despite knowing all along that she had overlooked these areas when assembling her own team! My advice? Don’t ever let someone else direct