By Elyssa A. Goldstein, CLM

As the saying goes, “timing is everything”.  On the evening of Monday, November 20, 2017, I found out that I had passed the Association of Legal Administrators’ Certified Legal Manager exam.  To say I was elated would be an understatement.  I was on the proverbial top of the world, and couldn’t imagine anything disrupting my happiness.

Nine days later, on Wednesday, November 29, 2017, I found myself on the doorstep of losing my job, as my firm would be dissolving at the end of the calendar year due to the loss of a name partner to a judicial appointment. 

While I was thrilled for my colleague, and understanding of the business decision that would result in my job loss, I couldn’t help but feel an overwhelming sense of sadness and uneasiness.  Those that know me well know that, when it comes to my work life, I like to chart my own course, and leave nothing up to chance.  (Okay, the same applies to my non-work life, as well.)  The position of strength that I relished was no longer at play, and I would be left to navigate quickly securing a new job during an incredibly challenging time of year.  Naturally, I reached out to my New Jersey Association of Legal Administrators colleagues for help.

I could fill more space than I have here with my appreciation for the outpouring of job leads, support and encouragement I have received this past month.  My sadness and uneasiness have been (somewhat) replaced by immense gratitude.  It is one thing to say, and another thing to do, and the amount of “doing” that has been done on my behalf is incredible.

As I am about to walk through a door with only unknown on the other side, I want to reiterate how blessed I am to have my New Jersey Association of Legal Administrators family in my life.  I also want to promise each of you that I will do whatever I can to help you in your own time(s) of need.  

A principle benefit of the network in which we exist and continue to develop is that we are a built-in support system for one another.  My hope is that none of us ever need support for the big-ticket items, like unexpectedly losing a job, but the reality is that some of us will.  Having now lived this reality, I know I am in excellent hands, and, again, I hope you know that I am truly, truly grateful.

Elyssa A. Goldstein, CLM is the Office Manager of Wolkstein, Von Ellen & Brown, LLC in Springfield, New Jersey.

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