James Donovan, adjunct professor at the University of Virginia and partner at Goldman Sachs, offers unique, practical advice to students headed toward a career in law or business.
Jim Donovan explains: “Whether you’re going to be lawyers or consultants or bankers or business people or entrepreneurs, you will need to cultivate client acquisition skills. You can learn this skill, practice it—get better at it over time. When you’re working on a mandate, know that issue cold. But expand your knowledge about the industry, the company, the competitors, etc. and engage the CEOs and ask them questions. Capitalize on the fact that you have a captive CEO audience—engage them on other topics! What will happen is that the CEO will start to think of you as more than just a lawyer and you will own that relationship.”