Meet Samantha Hargitt
The balancing act of life and career goals will inevitably include points in which you are faced with significant challenges.
What have been the challenges faced in your professional career?
Some of the challenges in my career so far have, in certain instances, related to someone else’s expectations of me as a young woman in the legal field. Particularly early on in my career, I had experiences when the opposing counsel would misunderstand my role in the transaction and treat me as though I was not on their level or my contributions were not as worthy. I found my young male colleagues did not face the same frustration or feeling that they needed to prove their worth or correct another’s expectations despite similar levels of experience. Fortunately, I’ve had great support internally from senior partners in the firm who know my potential and value my perspective.
What have you learned, what have you taken away from these experiences that helped shape the person you are today?
Through this experience, I have found ways to tactfully address these situations in a manner that corrects the record but avoids creating a distracting confrontation. In many cases, the person’s actions are not intended to offend but result from cultural biases that we’re all often still trying to unlearn. At the end of the day, I try to let the quality of my work and my commitment to my practice and my clients lead the way and speak for me.