Are you an Outlaw? Meet Erin Ryan

Who has redefined what it means to think outside the law (aka OUTLAW) and is helping each of us in the process?

Meet Erin Ryan, Senior Business Development Manager at McGuireWoods LLP. Over her 14-year career, Erin has been fortunate to provide business development and marketing services to three AmLaw 100 firms, with the last 9 years at McGuireWoods. Her role as senior business development manager encompasses many facets, including revenue generation, practice development, coaching, innovation, and client relationship management.

Erin has a passion for team management and professional growth. She launched a “Professional Growth Forum” that regularly brings together members of the firms’ marketing and business development group to shine a light on “soft” skills to enhance their long-term success. She approaches each day with an open mind, ready to teach, to learn, and to do something to make her firm a better place. Above all, she strives to help people discover the same intrinsic joy in their careers that she has been fortunate to experience.

Erin is an active member of the Legal Marketing Association and will serve as chair of the 2020 LMA Southeast Regional Conference. She frequently writes and speaks on business development, management, and professional growth. Erin received her J.D. from the University of Wisconsin, where she also received her B.A. in journalism and public relations. In addition to being a proud wife, she loves re-experiencing life’s small wonders through the eyes of her two amazing children.

We asked Erin a few questions, and her answers can be found below. Enjoy getting to know this Outlaw!

Q: Where would you like to live?
A: I actually got to play this one out in 2011 when my husband and I decided to escape frigid Chicago winters for warmer climates. While we preferred a city where one of us could relocate within our job, it felt like throwing a dart at the map. We chose Charlotte, NC and haven’t looked back. This beautiful city is the perfect place for us to raise our family!

Q: What is your motto?
A: “If something is worth doing, it’s worth doing well.” I repeat this mantra in every aspect of my life, from creating work product to cleaning my house. Maybe it’s the perfectionist in me, but if I’m going to do something halfway, I may as well spend that time doing something else altogether.

Q: Finish this sentence: “If I could have one super-power, it would be…”
A: To operate at full capacity without the need to sleep. Sleep is non-negotiable for me, but there are so many things I could accomplish in those extra 8 hours when no one else is awake.

Q: Who are your favorite authors/what are your favorite books?
A: I don’t have a single favorite author, but I enjoy reading when I can. Currently I am finishing “The Power of Moments” by Chip Heath and Dan Heath. For me, the mark of a great book is when it forces me to look at the world in a slightly different way. This one has that in spades. If I had my no-sleep superpower, I would read more fiction. As a working parent with lots of competing priorities, getting lost in a good book has become a luxury.

Q: Your favorite musician or band?
A: I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m a Swiftie. She is mega-talented, and I respect the authenticity in her music. But I also have a lifelong love affair with Bon Jovi…they rock, pure and simple. I’ve experienced 14 concerts, including a front row seat during my first year of law school. #BucketList

Q: Your favorite virtue?
A: Empathy. There is some debate as to whether empathy is a virtue or a skill, but does it really matter? So many of our problems – in our heads, in our personal lives, in the workplace, in the world – could be mitigated if we genuinely tried to understand someone else’s journey.