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Carolyn Smallwood Pens Article on CLM Exam for Association of Legal Administrators

Carolyn Smallwood’s article “Top 10 Reasons Why You Should Start Planning Now for the Fall CLM Exam” appeared in the July 2014 issues of the Association of Legal Administrators’ Legal Management.  Click PDF Download to see a full version of the article as it appeared in the publication.

Top 10 Reasons Why You Should Start Planning Now for the Fall CLM Exam

By Carolyn Smallwood, CLM

1. Enhance your resume. A stable and rewarding job may change unexpectedly and force you to seek other employment. Having the CLM designation can distinguish you from a pack of otherwise qualified candidates in an employers’ job market.

2. Improve your visibility and credibility within the Association on both a local and international level when your name is on the published list of CLMs and specially identified on nametags at various meetings and conferences.

3. Qualify your firm for discounts on professional negligence insurance. ALA publishes a list of these and other CLM benefits on their website.

4. Provide a business case to attend ALA conferences as you can obtain CLM application requirements or recertification credits at all conferences.

5. Take your exam online at Pearson VUE’s many testing centers, around the United States, Canada and other U.S. territories. The application deadline is September 8, 2014, for the Exam Date November 10, 2014.

6. Develop new friendships in a ALA Study Group. There’s nothing quite like experiencing the joy of victory and the agony of defeat to build closer relationships with fellow administrators.

7. Impress your friends and family by having these three little letters [CLM] behind your name.

8. Validate what you do and do not already know. According to ALA’s CLM brochure, “Job requirements for principal administrators working in different environments are not exactly the same. The content of the CLM exam is targeted to an individual who is expected to have dayto- day, hands-on involvement in all areas of legal administration. Additionally, passing the CLM examination demonstrates that an individual has the management skills and the depth and breadth of knowledge that would enable him or her to visit any 30- to 50- attorney law office, review practices and procedures, and be conversant about, and offer advice, in all areas of legal administration without relying on others.”

9. Enjoy the congratulations from your colleagues! They sent me cards and flowers and emails. It was very touching.

10. Inspire others. The last time I was in a college class was in 1980, and I had overwhelming fear about taking the CLM exam because my collegiate experience wasn’t so pleasant. What I figured out is because people learn differently: some can study for the CLM using books and websites, and others like me can get similar educational benefit from attending Section Meetings, Chapter Meetings, Regional and Annual Conferences. If I can do it, YOU can too —so just do it!

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