Mentorship Video | Sullivan & Cromwell

Proving the Benefits of Mentorship at the firm

Client: Sullivan & Cromwell
Industry: Legal
Video Type: Recruitment
Messaging Type: Interview-Based

About This Video Project

Sullivan & Cromwell tasked us with creating a video that highlights the importance of mentorship and the its’ impact on the success of the firm. Mentorship is in the DNA of S&C, and we hear how it begins when you walk through the door as a summer associate. Learn how mentorship is a two-way street, and how it is fundamental to the practice of law. This video show’s Sullivan & Cromwell’s commitment to mentorship & the impact it has on their lawyers’ success.


S&C is different. We take mentorship seriously. A generalist model requires mentorship. You can’t have one without the other. Mentoring is in our DNA. The commitment of each one of our lawyers who have gone through the growth experience of being mentored to then becoming mentors is something that becomes singularly important in the success of the programs that we run. The S&C mentor relationship really begins when you walk through the door here. As a summer associate, there are so many things as a young lawyer that you just can’t know unless you’re being guided by a seasoned lawyer. I’ve been fortunate to have mentors that have supported me since the beginning, and those mentors have been there for the work milestones, also people I can talk to about things going on outside of work. And now that I am on the other side, it’s really important to me to make connections with the other lawyers that I work with, and especially women at the firm. As a lawyer here, it is part of my job to mentor and to teach the next generation of lawyers. Having relationships with a broad number of partners and associates as I was coming up at S&C has been the best way to develop relationships that naturally lead to mentorship. The beauty of mentoring is if you really believe in it, it doesn’t feel like part of the work. It feels like just the way you interact with your colleagues. We look to mentors all throughout our career. Mentorship is a two-way street because the younger member of that partnership, and I think it is a partnership, it also gives something to the person who’s more senior. We both give and take different things within different pairings. There are obviously formal mentorship programs at the firm through affinity groups or through practice areas. And then there are the informal mentorships that just develop over time. The advice and mentorship that they give me is very practical and effective. Some of my most important mentors have been my friends here, other associates, frankly sometimes people who are even more junior than me, but they’ve had experiences that I don’t have, and I think it’s really just about forming relationships and having an openness. I’ve had fantastic male mentors here at S&C, where if I get into a room where occasionally it’ll be a board and there’ll be all male members or maybe one female member, they will stop and they will create space for you in the negotiation or in the room, and that’s been incredibly valuable. Mentorship is fundamental to how we practice law, and it’s not enough to be an expert in a particular area of the law. You really need to have empathy, not just with clients but with your colleagues as well. You do it by working closely together with people and seeing how they practice law, seeing how they interact with others with respect and dignity. It’s very much center to everything we do. Our firm has been in existence for 144 years, and we are a law firm where one generation trains the next. The next leaders of Sullivan and Cromwell are the young associates of the firm. I’m a first-generation lawyer. I’m a first-generation immigrant, and so I didn’t come to law school having my own built-in network of people who could tell me what the practice of law looks like, so it was really important for me to find my surrogate family of legal professionals to take me in and give me guidance. That very inclusive, very generous style of mentoring, that very associate-centric style of mentoring of people trying to help you craft a practice that you can feel really good in and really good about.

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