V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

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itbdvorm
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Sun May 12, 2013 8:47 pm

AssumptionRequired wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:OCS told you that Law Review doesn't mean much here?

They'd know better than I would, but I can say it almost certainly made a difference for me. Your mileage may vary, I suppose.

EDIT: Also, I wouldn't overestimate its easiness to get. I know too many who didn't get it for that. :P


Thanks, that's really helpful. Yeah, I may have overstated OCS's opinion. After talking with them, I just got the impression that, aside from clerkships, it doesn't really have a big impact. But it's definitely good to hear otherwise from someone who's actually done OCI here.


Yeah I mean if you are at HYS and jut want big law, I am guessing you dont have to try to hard unless you want one of the top shops


Re: law review - I was just having this chat w/someone actually. Here's my two cents:

1) Making law review is definitely important and a nice boost. It demonstrates something - usually top grades and/or writing ability. All else being equal, of course I'd offer the law review kid a callback/offer over the non-law review one. But of course things also change firm to firm and goal to goal. If your grades are good enough for LR and you "don't care which firm you go to, just want to work at a firm" go nuts and skip it...but I doubt very much that many people fall into that camp.

2) Doing law review, on the other hand, is relatively meaningless and a waste of time unless you're getting a credit for that. Of course I didn't clerk and I do corporate, so may be meaningful in either/both of those camps.

Where I ultimately come out is that there are relatively few ways of positively improving your OCI candidacy post-grades. If one of them is within your control, why not do it unless it's an insane process?

Bob-Loblaw 1
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Bob-Loblaw 1 » Mon May 13, 2013 1:10 am

tag

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Mon May 13, 2013 8:22 am

I apologize if you have already answered this question, and I know the answer will vary firm to firm.

When you have seen associates (particularly mid-level associates) shown the door in the corporate group, what was the motivating factor? Was the writing on the wall? Were their hours low?

I know mid-levels associates can be quite profitable for firms. I am not worried about my job at all right now, but I'm doing some financial planning, hoping to hang onto this job for 2-3 more years possibly (if I can stand it) and want to plan for contingencies. I do not work at a highly leveraged firm by any means.

itbdvorm
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Mon May 13, 2013 8:58 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I apologize if you have already answered this question, and I know the answer will vary firm to firm.

When you have seen associates (particularly mid-level associates) shown the door in the corporate group, what was the motivating factor? Was the writing on the wall? Were their hours low?

I know mid-levels associates can be quite profitable for firms. I am not worried about my job at all right now, but I'm doing some financial planning, hoping to hang onto this job for 2-3 more years possibly (if I can stand it) and want to plan for contingencies. I do not work at a highly leveraged firm by any means.


if you are a "good" midlevel associate, don't drop balls on your deals, people like working with you, etc., you can duck a few deals and stick aroud for awhile (though might get held back / low bonus / not make partner). people get truly shown the door for big f'ups / being useless

Anonymous User
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Mon May 13, 2013 10:15 pm

itbdvorm wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I apologize if you have already answered this question, and I know the answer will vary firm to firm.

When you have seen associates (particularly mid-level associates) shown the door in the corporate group, what was the motivating factor? Was the writing on the wall? Were their hours low?

I know mid-levels associates can be quite profitable for firms. I am not worried about my job at all right now, but I'm doing some financial planning, hoping to hang onto this job for 2-3 more years possibly (if I can stand it) and want to plan for contingencies. I do not work at a highly leveraged firm by any means.


if you are a "good" midlevel associate, don't drop balls on your deals, people like working with you, etc., you can duck a few deals and stick aroud for awhile (though might get held back / low bonus / not make partner). people get truly shown the door for big f'ups / being useless

Thanks. This is very helpful. This was my impression, but I wanted to confirm my suspicion. So if I have no interest in being partner, I need to just keep doing good work, but I can duck a few deals here and there? I'm fried and just want to survive a few more years. Bonuses/partnership prospects don't mean anything to me.

Can you give examples of what really constitutes "dropping the ball" on a deal? I've heard this phrased thrown around and I've closed well over 30 deals, but I've never really seen or heard of an example of what really constitutes dropping the ball as opposed to a small, easily recoverable mistake.

Basically, I have been a model associate to date but feel like I need to pull back a bit in order to avoid burn-out. I am trying to pull back without sacrificing my career or my reputation, but it's a difficult dance...as I am sure you can appreciate.

itbdvorm
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Mon May 13, 2013 11:23 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
itbdvorm wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I apologize if you have already answered this question, and I know the answer will vary firm to firm.

When you have seen associates (particularly mid-level associates) shown the door in the corporate group, what was the motivating factor? Was the writing on the wall? Were their hours low?

I know mid-levels associates can be quite profitable for firms. I am not worried about my job at all right now, but I'm doing some financial planning, hoping to hang onto this job for 2-3 more years possibly (if I can stand it) and want to plan for contingencies. I do not work at a highly leveraged firm by any means.


if you are a "good" midlevel associate, don't drop balls on your deals, people like working with you, etc., you can duck a few deals and stick aroud for awhile (though might get held back / low bonus / not make partner). people get truly shown the door for big f'ups / being useless

Thanks. This is very helpful. This was my impression, but I wanted to confirm my suspicion. So if I have no interest in being partner, I need to just keep doing good work, but I can duck a few deals here and there? I'm fried and just want to survive a few more years. Bonuses/partnership prospects don't mean anything to me.

Can you give examples of what really constitutes "dropping the ball" on a deal? I've heard this phrased thrown around and I've closed well over 30 deals, but I've never really seen or heard of an example of what really constitutes dropping the ball as opposed to a small, easily recoverable mistake.

Basically, I have been a model associate to date but feel like I need to pull back a bit in order to avoid burn-out. I am trying to pull back without sacrificing my career or my reputation, but it's a difficult dance...as I am sure you can appreciate.


Absolutely.

So dropping the ball is really just not doing what's expected of you. Shitty work product, missing deadlines, not getting back to clients/other attorneys. Super easy to not drop the ball which is why it gets more frustrating when people do.

Remember - it is ALWAYS better to say no to taking on a deal than to take on too many deals and screw something up. People quickly forget who said yes/no to what - they always remember the person who screwed them.

Talk to people - senior associates, junior partners you trust, ask about stuff/breaks/etc. Take a true vacation if you can. If you've been a model associate a break is probably yours for the taking

Anonymous User
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Mon May 13, 2013 11:51 pm

Thanks again. This is really helpful. I plan to take a real vacation over the course of the summer (though, it may not be until later in the summer).

Out of curiosity, how did you handle rebalancing that most associates need to do as they rise the ranks from juniors, then as midlevels and start to approach the senior associate level? I feel like as a junior associate you have to prove yourself, do whatever it takes at the drop of a hat (not sleep, work weekends, etc.) and never push back on a deadline. You just need to figure it out and grow your reputation. As a midlevel, you have proved yourself, but the workflow just increases because now you can do more and you are known to more people. Partners can trust you more, clients contact you more often to request things get done, etc. As you approach senior associate, you need to have this rebalancing figured out or you will be wholly consumed by work because marketing efforts/networking is in high gear.

Any tidbits of wisdom are much appreciated. I've approach people that I trust in my department, but it has not been particularly helpful so far. Many of the people are just grinders and never went through needing to pull back to maintain sanity/health/a marriage.

itbdvorm
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Tue May 14, 2013 1:39 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Thanks again. This is really helpful. I plan to take a real vacation over the course of the summer (though, it may not be until later in the summer).

Out of curiosity, how did you handle rebalancing that most associates need to do as they rise the ranks from juniors, then as midlevels and start to approach the senior associate level? I feel like as a junior associate you have to prove yourself, do whatever it takes at the drop of a hat (not sleep, work weekends, etc.) and never push back on a deadline. You just need to figure it out and grow your reputation. As a midlevel, you have proved yourself, but the workflow just increases because now you can do more and you are known to more people. Partners can trust you more, clients contact you more often to request things get done, etc. As you approach senior associate, you need to have this rebalancing figured out or you will be wholly consumed by work because marketing efforts/networking is in high gear.

Any tidbits of wisdom are much appreciated. I've approach people that I trust in my department, but it has not been particularly helpful so far. Many of the people are just grinders and never went through needing to pull back to maintain sanity/health/a marriage.


frankly (sorry) - still haven't figured it all out. but it gets better as you actually become a "deal leader" - you can be active instead of reactive

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ph5354a
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby ph5354a » Tue May 14, 2013 1:52 pm

Tag. Thanks for this, OP.

drive4showLSAT4dough
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby drive4showLSAT4dough » Thu May 16, 2013 4:32 pm

What are some successful ways the interviewees have described their pre-law school firm experiences in paralegal-type positions? Is it universally considered a bump, or are there effective ways to make it stick as a positive factor?

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 21, 2013 2:14 pm

Hi--I'm a rising 2L getting ready for the chaos of recruiting season. I had a good convo with a hiring partner at a firm event earlier in the year. I received an email from the partner a couple of months later encouraging me to interview with the firm and making himself available for any questions i might have. I know that it was a form email but I also don't know of anyone else who received one. My grades aren't terrible but they don't seem to be good enough for this firm. Is it worth bidding on them?

jd20132013
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby jd20132013 » Tue May 21, 2013 3:21 pm

I never understood these "is it worth it" questions. If you don't try the answer is no. If you want the firm, bid and work the connection. Unless you have a severely restricted bidlist, it's not going to knock out the one firm that will definitely take you.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 21, 2013 3:29 pm

jd20132013 wrote:I never understood these "is it worth it" questions. If you don't try the answer is no. If you want the firm, bid and work the connection. Unless you have a severely restricted bidlist, it's not going to knock out the one firm that will definitely take you.


You are right. You don't understand my question.

jd20132013
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby jd20132013 » Tue May 21, 2013 7:25 pm

Cool. Good luck.

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ExBiglawAssociate
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Tue May 21, 2013 7:28 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Hi--I'm a rising 2L getting ready for the chaos of recruiting season. I had a good convo with a hiring partner at a firm event earlier in the year. I received an email from the partner a couple of months later encouraging me to interview with the firm and making himself available for any questions i might have. I know that it was a form email but I also don't know of anyone else who received one. My grades aren't terrible but they don't seem to be good enough for this firm. Is it worth bidding on them?


See if you can find out what the firm's GPA cutoff is. Many firms have them. If you're below it, there's no way you're getting hired.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 21, 2013 7:55 pm

Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Hi--I'm a rising 2L getting ready for the chaos of recruiting season. I had a good convo with a hiring partner at a firm event earlier in the year. I received an email from the partner a couple of months later encouraging me to interview with the firm and making himself available for any questions i might have. I know that it was a form email but I also don't know of anyone else who received one. My grades aren't terrible but they don't seem to be good enough for this firm. Is it worth bidding on them?


See if you can find out what the firm's GPA cutoff is. Many firms have them. If you're below it, there's no way you're getting hired.


I'm at Penn. School doesn't calculate GPAs or give out school rank. I know of the range of grades this firm looks for. I'm not in it.

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5ky
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby 5ky » Tue May 21, 2013 8:26 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'm at Penn. School doesn't calculate GPAs or give out school rank. I know of the range of grades this firm looks for. I'm not in it.


Just calculate your GPA yourself. Firms will.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 21, 2013 10:52 pm

5ky wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I'm at Penn. School doesn't calculate GPAs or give out school rank. I know of the range of grades this firm looks for. I'm not in it.


Just calculate your GPA yourself. Firms will.



Maybe. Maybe not. Also GPAs come out differently depending on how you calculate them. Also GPAs don't mean much without a class rank and a determination of where the GPAs come out rank wise.


I don't understand why posters other than the guy taking questions feel the need to chime in.

itbdvorm
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Wed May 22, 2013 12:25 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
5ky wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I'm at Penn. School doesn't calculate GPAs or give out school rank. I know of the range of grades this firm looks for. I'm not in it.


Just calculate your GPA yourself. Firms will.



Maybe. Maybe not. Also GPAs come out differently depending on how you calculate them. Also GPAs don't mean much without a class rank and a determination of where the GPAs come out rank wise.


I don't understand why posters other than the guy taking questions feel the need to chime in.


Well, I'd think about going super-ballsy and, if you're going to be in town (assuming NYC) or even if not, sending a reply back such as "Great to hear from you, I am very excited about the prospect of interviewing with Firm, I am actually going to be in NY the week of [blank] and would love the opportunity to meet with you in person and discuss further the possibility of working at Firm". Maybe slip in something about meeting his colleagues if possible. Bring your resume and transcript if he says yes. It's possible to short-circuit the OCI process entirely.

Now does that mean you have a chance in hell? Who knows, I don't know what the firm is or what your grades are. But you should indeed calculate your GPA (easy to do, 4.0 scale * credits, aggregated, average). Firms will indeed do that.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Wed May 22, 2013 1:26 pm

itbdvorm wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
5ky wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I'm at Penn. School doesn't calculate GPAs or give out school rank. I know of the range of grades this firm looks for. I'm not in it.


Just calculate your GPA yourself. Firms will.



Maybe. Maybe not. Also GPAs come out differently depending on how you calculate them. Also GPAs don't mean much without a class rank and a determination of where the GPAs come out rank wise.


I don't understand why posters other than the guy taking questions feel the need to chime in.


Well, I'd think about going super-ballsy and, if you're going to be in town (assuming NYC) or even if not, sending a reply back such as "Great to hear from you, I am very excited about the prospect of interviewing with Firm, I am actually going to be in NY the week of [blank] and would love the opportunity to meet with you in person and discuss further the possibility of working at Firm". Maybe slip in something about meeting his colleagues if possible. Bring your resume and transcript if he says yes. It's possible to short-circuit the OCI process entirely.

Now does that mean you have a chance in hell? Who knows, I don't know what the firm is or what your grades are. But you should indeed calculate your GPA (easy to do, 4.0 scale * credits, aggregated, average). Firms will indeed do that.


Thank you. That helps a great deal. The email included an invitation to a cocktail reception for rising 2Ls at the firm. I won't be able to make it but I'll try to set something up outside of it.

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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 25, 2013 2:40 am

Not sure if this has been asked yet, but how could one make themselves attractive to BigFed while at a firm? More specifically, financial regulators. What practice group would be best and do you know anyone who has made this jump?

6lehderjets
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby 6lehderjets » Sat May 25, 2013 4:27 am

Tag, and thanks for doing this.

Green Crayons
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Green Crayons » Sun May 26, 2013 1:00 am

Appellate-focused practice. Is it a real thing outside of the few, top firms with the big names leading the practice groups?

As a 3L going into a clerkship followed by a firm gig (Vault 100 but certainly not Vault 50 and exceptionally far from the V10 elite), what can I do from Day 1 to help shift my career trajectory to focus on appellate litigation? Is this purely a "find a partner already established in the area and hope that they like you" strategy?

anon168
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby anon168 » Sun May 26, 2013 1:23 am

Green Crayons wrote:Appellate-focused practice. Is it a real thing outside of the few, top firms with the big names leading the practice groups?


No.

Green Crayons wrote:As a 3L going into a clerkship followed by a firm gig (Vault 100 but certainly not Vault 50 and exceptionally far from the V10 elite), what can I do from Day 1 to help shift my career trajectory to focus on appellate litigation? Is this purely a "find a partner already established in the area and hope that they like you" strategy?


What kind of clerkship? Please COA? And please let it be Federal COA.

Also, what area of the country are you living in or targeting? Please say DC.

If you can't wedge your way into a biglaw appellate group (and really we're just talking DC biglaw here fwiw) then look at boutiques. Otherwise target the public sector - both government and public interest.

jd20132013
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Re: V15 Senior Associate/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby jd20132013 » Sun May 26, 2013 1:30 am

Piggybacking off that question--is it true that even if you have a Federal COA, it's unlikely you'll be able to get into one of the top flight appellate groups unless it's like...D.C. Cir. or a feeder? That's been floated around on this board before and I wonder how true it is




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