Working In The Midwest #2

Having grown up in Metro Detroit I felt very comfortable coming to work at a firm just outside of Detroit this summer. Since coming to college I have learned that folks from different parts of the country approach work and leisure from different perspectives, but I can honestly say while I appreciate learning those alternate ways of doing things I have come to highly regard the Midwestern style of business. There is a bit of a running stereotype that Midwesterners tend to err on the side of humility, hard work, and dedication to values. While such a generalization does not capture all of the personalities of everyone living here, it does seem to fit the culture of my firm and the way they conduct business.

I think the greatest misconception that one can make is that Midwesterners lack in the areas of ambition and drive, but again I think that is owed to the fact that on average people tend to pursue their goals with vigor without broadcasting every achievement with pomp and circumstance. This has been a great fit for me because while I enjoy being recognized for quality work I do not feel the need for a celebration and praise after completing every task. Flying under the radar on a broader business sense may mean that the local news is not covering our firm on every transaction closed, but I believe my colleagues take satisfaction in a job well done regardless of recognition from the press for example.

While none of these regional traits have been a surprise for me I did find it interesting that some of my colleagues who come from other parts of the country have adopted the mindset so willingly. I believe this goes to show that people are capable of change if they put their mind to it, and I think it is also a testament to the positive culture at the firm. At the end of the day the people here care about providing quality advice to their clients not for the sake of their bottom line, but rather to form long-lasting relationships with businesses as their go-to M&A firm. As the firm closes in on nearly a decade of business it is evident that this model has worked very well and will continue to drive growth for the next ten years and beyond.

One thought on “Working In The Midwest #2

  • July 20, 2018 at 3:23 pm

    Hi Joshua,

    Thanks for your sharing your post! I really enjoyed reading them. It sounds like you are enjoying your time at the law firm and that you are adjusting to the community well, too. One of my initial thoughts is I like that you are self-reflecting asking yourself how does you see your work fitting in the greater picture. Similarly, any time I am working on an assignment or project, I often look at it holistically and try to see how does my part fit in the bigger picture. This a great characteristic that you have early on. I encourage you to keep that. Being intellectually curious is a top trait employers seek out when looking for top talent!

    You mentioned that there is a work culture built on generalizations and perceptions. I would encourage you to be your authentic self and to be unique! Generalizations and stereotypes are not true for everyone so just be aware of that. Moreover, I am happy to hear that you are adjusting well with your other colleagues and you’re learning from each of them. It seems like you are finding great value from learning from them too.

    I’m interested in hearing about the type and number of projects that you’re working on? Are they group projects or individual work? How is what you’re learning from your internship connect back to the classroom?

    Looking forward to hearing more!


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