My Heart Will Go On

Ever have one of those days where the news outside The Firm is just as bad if not worse than what little info you can gather inside The Firm? I’m talking about the recent problems on Wall Street, not on Montgomery Street.

The problems on Montgomery Street barely rate a blip on the newswires, locally or nationally, but by the end of the month, the end of Q3, I’m sure the Chronicle or the Trib will pick it up. It has been called the Lehmanization of Heller Ehrman.

Right now is not the time to play “shoulda, coulda, woulda.” There will be plenty of time during the post-mortem of the bloated corpse that was Heller Ehrman to play CSI, point fingers, assign blame and walk away in a huff. Right now is the time when professional support staff who have tried to believe the line of bullsh*t fed to them by management need to gather together, pull down the life boats, make sure everyone is safe, and get the hell out while the deck is still at an angle, and not vertical.

In this past decade, we’ve all learned that when the man on the intercom says, “Everything is fine. Stay where you are. There is no danger,” that you haul ass and get the hell out or at least make plans for when you feel comfortable leaving. That time is now.

We all know that over the next few days management will make attempts to seem concerned, watchful and caring – all in line with their much touted “respect and dignity” policy. But as with any disaster, being pro-active, being positive, and helping each other is the way to survive. As the shareholders, at least those that are left, are pulling out their dry and golden life preservers, we’ll do what many of us have done in the past (remember Brobeck?):

– stay focused
– be creative
– help each other out
– encourage
– celebrate successes
– briefly note defeats
– and do what our leaders failed to do:

lead and communicate!

So there it is and have at it. Please review the Terms of Service for the code of conduct during a disaster. This is not a drill. I repeat: this is not a drill.


8 Responses to “My Heart Will Go On”

  1. 1 Associate 16 September 2008 at 5:01 am

    All –

    I’ve had the distinct pleasure of working with a number of support staff who were both consummately professional and fun, interesting people. I wish you all the best of luck in the future.

    – (A Soon-to-be-former) Heller Associate

  2. 2 X-HEWMster 16 September 2008 at 5:27 am

    It’s sad to watch this slow, painful death of the once-mighty Heller. But this ship is really sinking and everybody should bail out now before they are forced out — with the associated Brobeckian stigma.

  3. 3 Sad Associate 16 September 2008 at 2:08 pm

    All the IP partners have gone. Dissolution is oh-so-near. Can’t believe the economy is so damn shitty that I’ll struggle to find a decent job.

  4. 4 (now) happy former paralegal 16 September 2008 at 7:06 pm

    well, this was a long time coming, wasn’t it? greed, greed, greed! in truth, the heller people once loved has been gone some years now: by the time dear joan left us, it was more like HELLer for the paralegals. it’s very tempting to gloat; my only sadness is for those of my friends who still work there. so many others, however, were callously dismissed after decades of loyal service. i reached my own limit for managerial contempt circa 2005, and left voluntarily. just remember, there is life after heller. we’re all much happier on the other side. walk into the light…

    ps– love the blog.

  5. 5 X-HEWMster 17 September 2008 at 6:11 am

    Like “(now) happy former paralegal” I left the firm early this year after not deluding myself that “this slump is temporary” as management kept insisting, despite consistent signs to the contrary. (Even management itself degraded; replacements for Dear Joan and others were incompetent.) My observations turned out to be spot-on, and I’m in a much, much better position now. Current HE Staff: take heart, there are better opportunities “on the other side.” You don’t deserve all this stress and tension and uncertainty. Leave your comfort(?) zone, be strong, and “walk into the light…”

  6. 6 hellerdrone 17 September 2008 at 7:36 am

    Thanks for the comments and the visits ex-Heller staff.

  7. 7 Yet another ex-Hellerite 17 September 2008 at 8:52 am

    I’m thinking of you guys right now. Heller was a great place to work. Without violating the terms of service TOOOO much, let me concur that the Heller we knew and loved has been gone for a long time. And there REALLY is life after Heller, I assure you. The best thing is most of the places you’d want to go have ex-Hellerites working there already, and we’ll put in a good word for you.

    So hang in there, and give Patti a hug for me.

  1. 1 The soon to be ex-Heller Ehrman Trackback on 4 October 2008 at 7:30 am
Comments are currently closed.

Life preserver.jpg
Remember the words of Rev. Frank Scott (Gene Hackman in The Poseidon Adventure):

". . . sitting on our butts is not going to help us either. Maybe by climbing out of here, we can save ourselves. If you've got any sense, you'll come along with us."

Contact Us!

Send us your information as to job leads, networking, or just plain vent!
Go ahead, say it!
Add to Technorati Favorites
Bloggers' Rights at EFF


This blog has been created by Thomas MacEntee.

Recent Comments

Terms of Service

Heller Highwater (
Last Modified: September 14, 2008

- Don't be a dill weed.

- Treat other people the way you want to be treated.

- Ladies and children first.

- This is a rescue, not a bitch session.

- Help don't harm.

- Save the snarks for the attorneys and Above The Law.

Heller Highwater is not:

- a place to practice viscious and vindictive "whisper down the lane" rumour-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.

Heller Highwater is:

- a place for support, a place of empowerment, a place of passion;

- a place to learn about job leads, resume preparation, skill building, training, new opportunities, and how to succeed in a new workplace;

- a place to keep up on the latest news as to how Heller Ehrman management intends to treat its support staff as it winds down its operations - will it be every woman for herself? or will it be "let me hold the door for you and is there anything else I can do for you"?

- a place of refuge.

Note: in no way, shape or form is Heller Highwater sanctioned, supported or even recognized, (but it is very likely monitored) by the management of Heller Erhman, LLP. The opinions represented here and on each and every page of Heller Highwater do not constitute the opinions of Heller Ehrman, LLP or its shareholders or its management. In addition, the comments left by visitors do not reflect the opinions of Heller Highwater.

%d bloggers like this: