Monthly, members meet in person.
Much more frequently they contact each other by phone, email, and social media.
They had been senior associates at BigLaw firms during a Golden Age. Of course, for most law firms, that era is over.
On a conscious level, they perceive their little club as a must for networking, hearing about employment opportunities in and outside law, and getting the dirt on The Enemies, that is, the partners who terminated them. That illusion can be fun. However, the investment of their time rarely pays off in professional progress.
You don't have been Sigmund Freud to notice this: On other levels, they are trying to hold on to what they have made their own golden age. Since then, there has been no professional experience yielding such status, stimulating work, lucrative compensation and feeling of superiority.
What's obvious is that no member of the alumni club has done a reset. Sure, there are law firm jobs here and corporate compliance jobs there. There are consulting assignments as with condo boards.
However, no big leap forward. How they recall the past has them hog-tied to a very different world of work. One that is over.
Any executive coach would recommend that they quit this little club. Membership could be classified as downright toxic.
Note: I observe the same dynamics with the Gulf Oil (now Chevron since being taken over) former managers in public affairs. They're quite an active group, even sponsoring meet-ups in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where Gulf headquarters had been located.
They were puzzled when I demanded they remove my name from their email lists. To me, that was a sign of their unawareness that every member was stuck in the past and doomed to underachievement.
Non-members went on to progress to the C-suite in other industries. They are creating new kinds of golden ages in their careers.
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