This is especially true at law firms and investment banks and high-profile corporations, and it’s one reason why some blue chip firms have been so slow to offer anything resembling a healthy work-life balance. “It’s a problem because many of the firms just don’t want to let the client know their attorney is work­ing less than full time,” says Deborah Epstein Henry, president of Flex-Time Lawyers.

But major law firms are discovering that clients can be trained. More and more of them offer part-time partnerships, and the fact is, lawyers usually have to juggle a number of cases at once—so in reality, clients often have to wait for a response anyway. If you are valuable to your clients you have enough leverage to pull it off.