AGG Corporate partner Mike Burke, was profiled as part of Law.com’s “How I Made Law Firm Leadership” series on September 15, 2022. Mike, who is also administrative partner of AGG’s Washington, D.C. office, co-chair of the firm’s nationally ranked Life Sciences industry team, and leader of the Ireland & Northern Ireland practice, shared his perspective on his path to these leadership roles, guidance for attorneys interested in a path to leadership, and lessons from his experience in leadership.
From being the president of his high school senior class to serving as chair of the American Bar Association’s International Law Section, Mike has always sought out leadership positions. As the administrative partner in D.C., he focuses on ensuring that every person in the office has what they need to thrive and excel, both personally and professionally, as well as communicating firmwide goals and making sure the office more than pulls its weight in terms of firm success.
“We’re a team and I have to promote and protect the AGG culture,” Mike said, adding that current issues to address continue to be the impact of the pandemic, remote work, and the war for talent in the D.C. market.
Offering guidance to attorneys who similarly want to pursue leadership roles, Mike recommends investing in their firm.
“Successful firm leaders are those with a record of effectively investing time and effort in firm committees, taking opportunities to participate in a firm management project, and seeking leadership experience inside and outside of the firm,” he said. “Additionally, it is critical for us as firm leaders to have our fingers on the pulse of the industry and to be aware of trends and innovations that are impacting and sometimes disrupting the practice of law.”
Speaking to what advice he would give to his younger self, Mike repeated an adage from his father — “keep the faith” — meaning, be patient, do excellent work, and trust that things will work out as planned.
Mike concluded discussing the strategic direction of the D.C. office, including continued growth and making it an even more vibrant place and larger contributor to AGG’s success. At the center of these plans is the firm’s culture, which Mike attributed to the firm’s ability to effectively navigate the challenges of the last two years.
“In the AGG culture, we’re professional colleagues with a great deal of respect for one another,” Mike said. “We know each other’s families; we share in our colleagues’ successes and help with their challenges. That made it a bit easier to keep in contact with one another — through one-on-one calls, Zoom meetings and virtual happy hours. Without this culture, the connective tissue binding lawyers and the firm would have withered.”
To read the full Q&A, please click here.