Sklover & Company, LLC

Employment Attorneys

Serving Executives, Professionals and Senior Managers​

ExecutiveLaw Climbing Your Best Ladder

10. Climbing Your Best Ladder

“It’s better to be at the bottom of the ladder you want to climb than at the top of the one you don’t.”
– Stephen Kellogg

In our practice we assist executives, professionals and senior managers going “in, up or out” of employment. Most clients are aware of our “value-add” when they enter new employment, and, too, when they depart from employment. Few, though, are aware that we provide advice and counsel on career navigation, what we call “climbing their best ladder.”

This includes assistance in the pursuit, evaluation and negotiation of greater opportunities and rewards on the job, promotions to higher levels, and transitions to new employers. We particularly enjoy these assignments; there is little more rewarding to us than assisting someone in a carefully considered win-win pursuit.

A. Your “Best Ladder”
In youth, few of us know with certainty what we want to “be” when we “grow up.” Over time, we each begin on a chosen “path” and a “ladder” to climb that path, some by happenstance, some mindfully. Conscious, careful choice and moving up your “best ladder” require continued consideration of the changing world, and what of your “unique human capital” that changing world seeks, wants, and needs.

There is no “perfect” ladder, only a “right” one for you at this moment in time. With time and reflection we grow to understand our core values, what you view to be a good, quality and righteous life. Factors in choosing which “best ladder” is right for you include what you do well, what you enjoy, and what seems bound to provide you the greatest meaning, opportunity, challenge and reward.

It can only help in choosing and climbing your “best ladder” to gather input of others with experience in these matters, including those outside your usual universe, and who are independent of your interests.

B. Climbing Your “Best Ladder”
Wherever you begin on your chosen path – whether an internship or a C-suite position – you can use that opportunity to view, understand and reach for the next rung up. With each rung up, you gain a wider perspective and, too, a keener understanding of what elements of “unique human capital” you may need to acquire, develop and strengthen, including among them expertise, relations and reputation.

Each next rung up on your best ladder should be taken as safely and carefully as possible. It is never wise to act without careful forethought and due care.

C. We Help Clients Avoid Missteps and Falls along the Climb
As a “second pair of eyes,” we regularly assist clients in evaluating alternative steps under consideration, offering a truly independent view, and identifying potential missteps to manage or avoid.

We view assisting clients in “climbing their best ladder” among the most fulfilling aspects of our work.

We offer confidential telephone consultations as a first, preliminary step in providing counsel to those with workplace or career problems or opportunities. They are available days, evenings and weekends, depending upon urgency. For those with questions related to matters on which we were retained and worked with them during the preceding 12 months, brief discussions, without review of new documents, are provided without charge. For others, our Schedule of Consultation Fees can be found on our About page. Consultation arrangements can be made with Ms. Vanessa Mustapha or Ms. Phyllis Granger at 212.757.5000, or by email to or

(If you have any thoughts, comments or suggestions about these Insights, please consider sharing them with us, by forwarding them to us at Thank you, in advance.)

© Copyright 2019 Alan L. Sklover. All Rights Reserved and Strictly Enforced.

ExecutiveLaw Career Brand

1. Your Unique Career Brand

“Either you are distinct, or you will become extinct.”
– Tom Peters

We are enthusiasts when it comes to the practice and pursuit of branding and, of course, when it comes to employment, the notion of “career branding.”

Each of us has a unique personal brand, namely what others think of when they think of us. It is their sum total view of what we offer the world, our value to others, and to our clients, customers, employers and colleagues. Your brand precedes you, empowers you, and follows you, wherever you go.

Your “career brand” is what your present employer and all potential employers think of your potential value to them, and thus what they need to offer you in return for your working for them. Your knowledge, skills, relations and reputation have taken a great deal of time and effort to learn, acquire, and develop, and is a reflection of your personality, character and the standards you have set for yourself.

You create your brand each and every day, whether you know it or not. If you don’t proactively create and enhance your career brand, you leave that critical task to luck and chance, or worse, permit others to define it for you.

The employment marketplace is an increasingly competitive place. New York Times columnist Tom Friedman has written “Good enough is no longer good enough.” We could not agree more. If you don’t have a distinctive, attractive, outstanding career brand, in the employment marketplace you are likely perceived as little more than an easily replaceable commodity.

Most of our clients have devoted and continue to devote significant effort and imagination to creation and enhancement of their own, distinctive career brand, and enjoy the multiple and varied “fruits” of their efforts. Their experiences are as inspiring to us as they are rewarding for them, in the broadest sense and spirit of those two words.

ExecutiveLaw™ Insights

  1. Your Unique Career Brand
  2. Managing Employment Risks
  3. The Recruitment Phase
  4. The Negotiation Phase
  5. Equity “Trap Doors”
  6. Climbing the Ladder
  7. If Difficulties, Disputes or Allegations Arise
  8. Navigating Employment Departures
  9. Continuing Restrictions
  10. Extending Career Longevity