- What is Litigation Support? Database Administrator
- What is Litigation Support? Project Management
- What is Litigation Support? Legal Technology Expert
- What is Litigation Support? Help Desk / IT Support
- What is Litigation Support? Vendor Management
- What is Litigation Support? Marketer and Speaker
- What is Litigation Support? Trainer
- What is Litigation Support? Trial Presentation
A career in litigation support encompasses multiple careers. This series of articles will describe how each plays a part in litigation support.
Overall, litigation support can be described as:
We assist litigators.
We speak and translate geek.
We work with litigation discovery, primarily in electronic format.
One of the careers within litigation support is a Project Manager. I would dare to say that this is probably the most difficult part of the job for a litigation support professional. It can be tough trying to manage multiple cases, each with a legal team of its own.
Personally, I think our industry has been over-using the term “project manager”. It has become difficult to discern exactly what the role entails at each service provider, law firm, government agency or corporation. In addition, I find that hiring managers are defining it differently during the interview and hiring process.
To me, the project manager is the person on the team that is most definitely client facing. The client can include the legal team as well as the actual client the lawyers represent. From a service provider's point of view, the client might be a litigation support professional.
The project manager must be extremely organized and they must have excellent communication skills. It's a given that the project manager must be able to multi-task. The project manager is the gatekeeper.
One of the key criteria for an excellent project manager is how they handle the negative situations. Are they trust worthy? Do they know when to push back? Do they own a mistake if it's the right thing to do? Do they understand the importance of the timeline and can they relate that to others in their back office in a compelling, but respectful way?
A second key criteria is the project manager's ability to manage expectations of EVERYONE. If expectations are managed appropriately and proactively, the entire workflow will go so much smoother.
In my opinion, it is difficult to find an excellent project manager. When I find one, I hold on to them as long as I can. Make sure you tell your good project managers when they're doing a great job and take really good care of them.
I would like to single out a few of the best project managers I've known over the years and thank them for all of their hard work.
Melanie, Jamie, Sherry, Susan, Jeff, Brett, Kelly and Vipul, I can't thank you enough and I appreciate you more than you know!