The Young Lawyers Section (YLS) of The Chicago Bar Association started a video blog (Vlog) series called “Lawyering in the Time of Coronavirus” that will showcase many of its members. The second in the series features YLS Second Vice Chair, Tracy Brammeier, Associate at Clifford Law Offices.
Lawyers are navigating practicing law while social distancing and are finding creative solutions to do so. In this video, Tracy talks about her work from home setup, her biggest challenge as a result of the changes in normal day-to-day operations, how she stays sane while social distancing and a useful tip she suggests to other lawyers.
Q: Are you working remotely? If yes, what’s your set up?
A: Yes. I am working remotely from my kitchen along with my husband – we take turns telling each other “Shh, I’ve got a call in 2 minutes!” I am doing regular conference calls as well as communicating via email, Teams, and Zoom.
Q: What’s the biggest challenge you are facing as a result of the changes your normal day-to-day operations?
A: Even though I am regularly checking in with my team via video conference and telephone, I miss being able to just pop into someone’s office to run something by them – one of the best parts of practicing at a firm! Also – getting companies to work around not being able to fax things to me (it’s 2020 people!).
Q: What are you doing to stay sane while social distancing?
A: Cooking therapy all the way. One good thing about being stuck at home is that you can prepare meals that take a while to simmer on the stove and then go back to work while they’re cooking. My husband has definitely been enjoying home-cooked meals he doesn’t normally see on weeknights, like French onion soup and rich Bolognese sauce! I’ve also been making it a point to get out of the house every day to go for a walk or a run.
Q: If you have a useful tip / hack / resource you can suggest to other lawyers, please share it.
A: Everyone needs to get their technology game up to speed, but other than that I find it really helpful to keep a somewhat normal work week structure. Even though every day is casual day, I get dressed in the morning and sit down to work during the day (TV off – you don’t have a TV in the background at your office!) and then after dinner I relax. I am trying to keep Saturdays and Sundays as my “days off,” tackling home projects and getting ready for the week just like I normally would. I think a semblance of a normal routine helps you stay mentally organized and balance the load!
Follow the Lawyering in the Time of Coronavirus Vlog to watch more interviews.