Women's Leadership InitiativeQ&A with Lindsey Woods

Lindsey Woods is an associate on Porter Wright's litigation team and supports our litigation partners with all aspects of commercial litigation matters.

What was the single most important thing that made you want to focus on litigation?

Litigation has always been the most natural fit for my skill set and passions. I have always loved writing and research, and I was able to hone those skills in my previous career as a journalist. As a litigator, I have had the opportunity to do plenty of both and really focus those skills to put together the best strategies most persuasive arguments for clients.

What is the best advice you’ve received about how to be a successful attorney?

Law is a service business. In the controlled chaos of litigation, it can be easy to focus solely on the law, but it is just as important to understand the client’s goals, needs and communication styles. Every legal mentor I’ve ever had has given me this advice, and my mentors at Porter Wright have helped me understand what it means in practice. 

Describe a pivotal moment that influenced your career path.

I was sitting in my car in the Chicago Tribune parking lot, trying to convince myself how lucky I was to have this dream job that I had worked so hard to get. I had done this every day for three years. But that day I gave myself the grace to admit that I was feeling unfulfilled and miserable, rather than just forcing myself to feel grateful, which allowed me to explore why I was feeling that way. After some soul-searching, I made the very scary and exciting decision to not only leave my job, but to leave my journalism career and go back to school to become a lawyer. 

How has mentorship made a difference in your professional and personal life?

If there is one thing I’m sure of, it is that I could not do what I do without the support of professional and personal mentors. I believe you cannot have growth without vulnerability, and my mentorships have allowed me a compassionate and understanding place to be vulnerable and confront tough questions. This has been especially valuable to me in navigating two traditionally male-dominate spaces: sports journalism and law firm practice. My mentors have empowered me to be confident in my skills and ideas so that I can advocate for myself. Those skills have proven very useful in advocating for clients as well. 

Tell us about your favorite thing to do outside of work.

I love exploring different cultures and places through food – both cooking and supporting local restaurants. This dovetails nicely with my love of traveling, as I think the best way to explore a new place is through its local restaurant scene. I love finding people who are passionate about the food that they’re making. I’m also a long-suffering Columbus Blue Jackets fan and love to get to the games when I can.