Hilgers Graben PLLC

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I have been drafting contracts for a long time and I have written about them a lot in this blog, including posts on boilerplate clauses, how to create a contract playbook, and how to read a contract.  Looking back, I see that I have never shared my three core goals of contract drafting: 1) clarity (anyone can understand the deal); 2) get what you need vs. what you want (there is a…
Throughout my legal career, I have been pretty fortunate when it comes to good health, both physically and mentally.  I have a knack for managing deadlines and have always been able to crank out work pretty much as needed.  Still, like everyone, there are times when I feel overwhelmed by the weight of what is on my plate. And, the higher up you are on the food chain, the more pressing the weight becomes as…
I’ll start this post by saying it is both awesome and (somewhat) dispiriting to have to follow the last “Ten Things” blog post, i.e., Talia Jarvis’ guest post on what you need to know as a woman in-house lawyer.  I feel like the Rolling Stones agreeing to follow James Brown at the 1964 T.A.M.I. awards.  If you don’t know what happened, let’s just say Mr. Brown blew the Stones off the stage with his…
In seven years of writing this blog, I have turned down all offers of a guest post.  Nothing personal, I have always wanted “Ten Things” to just be my thoughts.  Today, I make an exception.  Why?  Because I think this is an incredibly important topic – one I have wanted to write about but knew I could never pull off.  At its core, blog writing has to ring true and be based on experience or…
Last year, I wrote about how to get the most out of regular 1:1 meetings; from the viewpoint of the manager and from that of the employee.  Those two posts turned out to be really popular.  I wasn’t surprised by that because I know (from experience) how often those meetings sucked. Not on purpose, but because neither I nor the other person – regardless of which chair I had at the time – really…
English philosopher Thomas Hobbes famously wrote in his poem Leviathan that, “Life is solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short.” That is a startling clear sentiment, both powerful and scary… Um, sorry. This has absolutely nothing to do with today’s “Ten Things” post. Just got off on a tangent here.  Let me start over… I have always been able to get a lot of things done in a day.  I never really thought much about it.…
Welcome back, everyone!  I hope your holidays were joyful and restful (and COVID-free).  I was able to make a bit of a dent in the next book, so the ABA goons are leaving me alone… for now.  I did have some time to squeeze in the first “Ten Things” blog of 2021.  As usual, and like I did when I was general counsel, I like to start the year by sitting back and just thinking…
Just like I promised last week, it’s December and time for my annual list of top legal blogs for in-house counsel!  This is one of my favorite “Ten Things” blogs to write because it gives me a chance to recognize some of the best legal writers out there today.  It also means that the year is coming to an end, which in the case of 2020 really cannot happen fast enough.  After this blog posts,…
Hi everyone!  I hope you are either knee-deep in or getting ready for a wonderful holiday season. I know that I promised that my next post would be the annual best legal blogs edition but I decided to take a short detour (which I get to do because it’s my blog).  I promise that before 2020 is over, I will post the best blogs edition. For today, however, I wanted to take up a question…
Trials are rare.  Like wins for the Dallas Cowboys or finding gold on Oak Island (seriously, guys give it up!).  If you have been practicing law long enough you know that most commercial litigation never goes to trial (at least here in the USA). Disputes typically get settled either through mediation or on the eve of trial.  Unfortunately, everyone spends a lot of money and time before that eventuality occurs.  This is why it is…