You have to give them points for the name. “Heller Highwater” is a new blog (first post went up on Monday) with survival tips for Heller Ehrman legal professionals. We’re not entirely sure partners know what’s going on in that firm since Mayer Brown walked away from merger talks this week, but it must be especially bewildering for paralegals, legal secretaries and other professionals a few steps removed from the inner workings of management.
The site adamantly, and repeatedly, stresses that it’s not a place to dish dirt, cop attitudes or otherwise fiddle while Montgomery Street burns:
Heller Highwater is not:
- a place to practice vicious and vindictive “whisper down the lane” rumor-mongering;
- a place to bad mouth co-workers;
- a place for diatribes against specific people or specific incidents;
- a place to heap pity on poor Heller Ehrman staff by outsiders;
- a place that discriminates or sets margins noting who is outside and who is inside — we even welcome supportive Heller Ehrman attorneys;
- meant to further the demise of Heller Ehrman, LLP.
That’s definitely going to kill the blog’s wider appeal, but creating a place to pool information about what to do as the floodwaters rise (we’re both going with and mangling the metaphor here) seems like a helpful, proactive thing to do. Job resources, unemployment resources, and links to news articles about the firm’s travails are included. Also emerging (the site is up to six posts as we type this) are instructive comparisons to the Bay Area's last great law firm meltdown, the infamous Brobeck disaster.
The blog may even be more helpful to some than the anonymous creator(s) might’ve expected — One legal recruiter posts his URL and phone number (Manhattan area code) saying he’s got tons of jobs for legal pros, just give him a call.
The few comments that seem to originate from Heller staff are uniformly pessimistic, with a distinct RMS Titanic vibe. Still, over the next few weeks (days?), the site may be of use as understandably worried staff wait for more definitive word from on high.
— Brian McDonough