Friday, 21 February 2014

Is gardening leave dead?

"Call for longer gardening leave to tackle the rise of networking on LinkedIn" is the title of an item in yesterday's Standard that caught my eye. In short, it mentions an observation by Daniel Isaac, a partner in Withers, that traditional gardening leave routines aren't much use in a world in which the social media, and in the case of lawyers LinkedIn, provide the perfect milieu for people to remain in touch with their clients -- and to be visible to them -- even when they leave a firm and are bound by all sorts of post-employment restrictions on soliciting the clients of their former firm.

Keeping in touch post-employment:
so easy, when you know how ...
From the point of view of the IP practitioner who departs from a large practice in order to kick-start his own solo one, post-employment restrictions are most unwelcome -- even if they are technically unenforceable as a restraint upon trade. The exposure offered through LinkedIn, where changes in employment details are automatically communicated to others with whom one is linked, is therefore invaluable.  Even if calls for departing professionals to "de-link" from existing clients are heeded, it is not reasonable to expect any individual to disappear so entirely from the social media that he cannot be found by a satisfied client who wishes to retain his or her services in the future.

Thoughts, anyone, and personal experiences?

1 comment:

Sally Cooper said...

If a client perceives that a particular lawyer "adds value" - they're going to make sure they stay in touch (and that's a comment from days gone by / not linked to social media). My question supplements yours - if you leave a firm (for whatever reason) and (after whatever period of time) fail to emerge in a new professional role (sole practitioner of otherwise) does your visibility on social media end up doing you more harm than good ?