Attorney at Law Magazine Miami Publisher Rhenne Leon sat down with 2019 Superstar Carlos Concepción of Shook Hardy & Bacon to discuss his career, his inspiration, and his plans for the future.
AALM: What do you find most rewarding about your practice?
CONCEPCIÓN: I would have to say problem solving with creative solutions, advocating a position and seeing it from client’s perspective. As an advocate, the law is a means to an end, never the other way around. I also enjoy developing a personal relationship of trust and confidence with the client. It is OK to say, “I don’t know,” if you also say, “We will figure it out or I’ll work with someone who knows.”
AALM: What do you find particularly challenging about your practice? How to you overcome these challenges?
CONCEPCIÓN: Merging the business of law with the practice of law. The only solution is that the client comes first, never the attorney. When there is a personal relationship of trust and confidence, this challenge is not hard to overcome. Moreover, telling a client, “No, this cannot be done.” It is not easy, but it is much easier when there is trust and confidence.
AALM: What traits do you think make an attorney exceptional? What is the difference between a good attorney and an outstanding one?
CONCEPCIÓN: Putting aside issues of competence and experience in your practice, these are the differences:
- Good lawyers solve problems; exceptional ones anticipate the problem and prepare the client.
- Good lawyers know the law; exceptional ones know the law and the client’s business.
- Good lawyers care for their clients; exceptional ones are loyal to them.
- Good lawyers can articulate their client’s position; exceptional ones can listen also.
- Good lawyers are prepared; exceptional lawyers are more prepared.
AALM: Tell us about your fellow attorneys at your firm? How do you work together?
CONCEPCIÓN: I am proud to work with exceptional, world-class lawyers. We work together and staff our cases by focusing on what is best for the client and never dwell on what is best for the individual lawyers. Humility paves the way.
AALM: Tell us about your involvement in the community.
CONCEPCIÓN: I am the current chair of the Miami International Arbitration Society. The mission of MIAS is to champion international arbitration and encourage the use of Miami as the legal jurisdiction for international disputes involving the Americas.
As an advocate, the law is a means to an end, never the other way around.”
AALM: What events or career moves are you most looking forward to in the coming year?
CONCEPCIÓN: I look forward to focusing only on the things that I can control so that I can be a good partner, a better lawyer and contribute to the success of my clients and law firm. I also look forward to spending time with my family and watching the development of my super-star children, Christine and Alex.
AALM: What do you most hope to accomplish in the future? Where do you see yourself in five or 10 years?
CONCEPCIÓN: Long ago, I learned that the only way to make tomorrow better is to focus on today. One client and one issue at a time. Do less, so you can do more.