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'Job-hopping' expected for young grads: Salama

While frequent "job-hopping" can be more problematic the older a lawyer gets, it's not an entirely negative thing for a law student, a first- or second-year associate, Toronto criminal lawyer Maureen Salama tells the Lawyers Weekly.

“The way I view it is, they’re young. I expect a varied work history. It’s very rare at that stage of the game that they know exactly what they’re going to do,” she says.

Salama, associate at Brauti Thorning Zibarras LLP, heads up the firm’s student committee, which sees her hiring young talent every year. And job-hopping is something she has noticed, says the article.

She weighs in on the topic in a Lawyers Weekly article that looks at the dangers that “job-hopping” can pose to a career. It does, however, note there are legitimate reasons why a person would jump from job to job, particularly at the outset of their career.

"It might even be a fruitful strategy to rise through the ranks and earn more money," says the article.

But in the long run, says the Lawyers Weekly, recruiters and veteran lawyers suggest that job-hopping hurts careers, partly because firms begin to question whether an individual is worth the investment and hiring that person "becomes a gamble they are not willing to take," says the article.

"A recent survey of more than 300 HR managers in Canadian companies found that an average of six job changes over a decade can lead to someone being viewed as a job-hopper," says the publication. Though the survey was developed by Robert Half Canada, which bills itself as the world’s largest specialized staffing firm, it did not focus on the legal world, says Lawyers Weekly.

Salama says in the article that she focuses on identifying transferable skills.

“I think it’s incumbent upon employers hiring students not to be so rigid in what they are looking for,” she tells the legal publication, noting that the job market is much tougher now compared to just five years ago.


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