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Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Fri Feb 19, 2016 10:50 pm
by itbdvorm
PeanutsNJam wrote:Just sayin thanks for taking the time to do this; this thread is very helpful. For others: I think firm hiring is really idiosyncratic, so I doubt itbdvorm's thoughts and ideas apply everywhere.

My q: 2 spaces after periods, or 1? And what are a few things you wished all your summer and junior associates knew?


two spaces

wished they knew they didn't know much of anything, I guess. and that whatever they think is "good", isn't good enough. they should read it, and write it, again and again.

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Fri Feb 19, 2016 10:51 pm
by itbdvorm
Anonymous User wrote:How important are grades to getting a CB? 1L T1 25%. Did Spring OCI. Interview went okay, but mostly me asking questions. Someone else in my section said it went the same. He got a CB, I did not. I have 4+ years of work experience. He has none. Just confused.


for a 1L position? need something magic to make it happen

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Fri Feb 19, 2016 11:12 pm
by Anonymous User
What sort of a boost is there for attractive men or women?

Or, is there a penalty for people who are overweight or unattractive?

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Sat Feb 20, 2016 12:04 am
by Anonymous User
Danger Zone wrote:
jbagelboy wrote:
smaug wrote:
sox49 wrote:I'm a 0L likely going to a top 25 this fall with a sub 3 undergrad gpa. I'll be 34 when I graduate. I worked as a legislative assistant for a state representative right outta school but left it to play music. I meandered for a while and ended up in restaurants, eventually serving and then managing in serious fine dining (award winning but not Michelin stars). I left that last summer to work as a legal assistant in small law.

I know I can make a good argument about the value of this experience and why law in any oci interviews I get, but how much is it going to hurt me in both screening and the interviews and how much can grades/personality make up for it?

Thank you!

Hey. Hey you. Don't go to law school. [sorry, this is egregious enough that I thought I should comment. I'm not going to derail this lovely thread with this, but seriously, don't go to law school.]


+1


As someone who is similarly old, underwhelming in undergrad, and "meandering," I'm wondering what aspects of this are the most damning. Any insight is greatly appreciated!

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Sat Feb 20, 2016 12:22 am
by Anonymous User
Anonymous User wrote:What sort of a boost is there for attractive men or women?

Or, is there a penalty for people who are overweight or unattractive?



not OP and hell, i'm still in Law School (3L) but had a comment about this made to me as a 1L.

I met with the MP of a leading regional law firm in my home market. This partner went to law school with my parents; was friends with my extended family; etc. Anyway, made the comment to me that b/c i'm well put together, in shape, presentable, etc. It helps. That being said, it won't make up for a shitty grade but it's enough to give you a push over a comparable candidate who may be a slob. So, stay in shape. Buy clothes that fit; don't buy off the rack from Macy's. If you take care of yourself, they can assume you will take care of their clients.

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Sat Feb 20, 2016 12:49 am
by Tls2016
Anonymous User wrote:
Danger Zone wrote:
jbagelboy wrote:
smaug wrote:
sox49 wrote:I'm a 0L likely going to a top 25 this fall with a sub 3 undergrad gpa. I'll be 34 when I graduate. I worked as a legislative assistant for a state representative right outta school but left it to play music. I meandered for a while and ended up in restaurants, eventually serving and then managing in serious fine dining (award winning but not Michelin stars). I left that last summer to work as a legal assistant in small law.

I know I can make a good argument about the value of this experience and why law in any oci interviews I get, but how much is it going to hurt me in both screening and the interviews and how much can grades/personality make up for it?

Thank you!

Hey. Hey you. Don't go to law school. [sorry, this is egregious enough that I thought I should comment. I'm not going to derail this lovely thread with this, but seriously, don't go to law school.]


+1


As someone who is similarly old, underwhelming in undergrad, and "meandering," I'm wondering what aspects of this are the most damning. Any insight is greatly appreciated!

I think meandering is the most damning. A person could do badly in undergrad but make a career, and then decide to go to law school for a different career. That shows stability, progression and growth. Aimless is problematic and harder to cover. I think a meandering type of person would absolutely despise biglaw even more than others.
I'm not OP so wait and see his response.

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Sun Feb 21, 2016 11:49 pm
by itbdvorm
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:What sort of a boost is there for attractive men or women?

Or, is there a penalty for people who are overweight or unattractive?



not OP and hell, i'm still in Law School (3L) but had a comment about this made to me as a 1L.

I met with the MP of a leading regional law firm in my home market. This partner went to law school with my parents; was friends with my extended family; etc. Anyway, made the comment to me that b/c i'm well put together, in shape, presentable, etc. It helps. That being said, it won't make up for a shitty grade but it's enough to give you a push over a comparable candidate who may be a slob. So, stay in shape. Buy clothes that fit; don't buy off the rack from Macy's. If you take care of yourself, they can assume you will take care of their clients.


It definitely helps and hurts, respectively. Personality means more, but it undoubtedly has an impact. There are studies.

Be the best you.

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Sun Feb 21, 2016 11:49 pm
by itbdvorm
Tls2016 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Danger Zone wrote:
jbagelboy wrote:
smaug wrote:
sox49 wrote:I'm a 0L likely going to a top 25 this fall with a sub 3 undergrad gpa. I'll be 34 when I graduate. I worked as a legislative assistant for a state representative right outta school but left it to play music. I meandered for a while and ended up in restaurants, eventually serving and then managing in serious fine dining (award winning but not Michelin stars). I left that last summer to work as a legal assistant in small law.

I know I can make a good argument about the value of this experience and why law in any oci interviews I get, but how much is it going to hurt me in both screening and the interviews and how much can grades/personality make up for it?

Thank you!

Hey. Hey you. Don't go to law school. [sorry, this is egregious enough that I thought I should comment. I'm not going to derail this lovely thread with this, but seriously, don't go to law school.]


+1


As someone who is similarly old, underwhelming in undergrad, and "meandering," I'm wondering what aspects of this are the most damning. Any insight is greatly appreciated!

I think meandering is the most damning. A person could do badly in undergrad but make a career, and then decide to go to law school for a different career. That shows stability, progression and growth. Aimless is problematic and harder to cover. I think a meandering type of person would absolutely despise biglaw even more than others.
I'm not OP so wait and see his response.


Sounds about right.

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Mon Feb 22, 2016 11:32 am
by PeanutsNJam
Is there any significance to law firm prestige, or should we just pick the office we like the best in the city we prefer?

In other words, does prestige matter more, or the substantive work you've done matter more, for purposes of moving onto other things (big gov, lateral, in-house, clerking, etc.)? Does prestige matter at all for those things?

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Mon Feb 22, 2016 10:45 pm
by itbdvorm
PeanutsNJam wrote:Is there any significance to law firm prestige, or should we just pick the office we like the best in the city we prefer?

In other words, does prestige matter more, or the substantive work you've done matter more, for purposes of moving onto other things (big gov, lateral, in-house, clerking, etc.)? Does prestige matter at all for those things?


Yes. But prestige for what you want to do.

You will be more likely to get a job doing lev fin at a bank from Cahill than Skadden. You will be more likely to get a job in energy from Milbank than DPW.

General prestige is generally helpful. Specific prestige is specifically helpful. And connections matter most.

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Tue Feb 23, 2016 7:42 pm
by MurdockLLP
For Spring OCI, do you think its best to say that you are interested in a specific practice group or that you are open to all practice groups? I am a 1L and am extremely interested in White Collar Defense and Securities Litigation, but I am not sure if firms would rather here that I am not sure what I want to practice and am hoping to use this summer to make a more definite conclusion.

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Tue Feb 23, 2016 8:25 pm
by Anonymous User
As a junior associate, I had some Q's about business development. Its certainly not something we learn in school, and most firms seem to do a poor job of training younger associates in business development. Yet this is a crucial skill as one progresses and can't just pick up all at once during senior associate years. So what can younger associates do to hone business development skills? Is it really just a matter of networking and staying in touch with contacts that may become future clients?

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Tue Feb 23, 2016 8:42 pm
by rpupkin
MurdockLLP wrote:For Spring OCI, do you think its best to say that you are interested in a specific practice group or that you are open to all practice groups? I am a 1L and am extremely interested in White Collar Defense and Securities Litigation, but I am not sure if firms would rather here that I am not sure what I want to practice and am hoping to use this summer to make a more definite conclusion.

I'm not a V15 partner, but I have a couple of suggestions:

1. I advise against focusing heavily on a particular practice group during 1L interviews. I think it's fine to express a general preference for litigation or corporate, but law students—and especially 1Ls—can get themselves in trouble when they start talking about specific practice areas. Sentences that start "I want to work in X practice area because...." often finish with a reason that bears little connection to the realities of practicing law in that area. Expressing a tentative preference is fine, but tread lightly.

2. In particular, it's risky to state that you're "extremely interested in white collar defense." At most big law firms, white collar defense does not bring in a lot of money, and the practice groups are small and relatively unstable. (It's good that you're also interested in securities litigation—in general, you want to make clear that you're open to working in commercial lit.) Again, it's fine to mention that you have some interest in white collar defense—and you should target firms with strong white collar practice groups if that's what interests you—but try not to make it the overwhelming focus of your interview.

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Thu Feb 25, 2016 3:42 pm
by itbdvorm
Anonymous User wrote:As a junior associate, I had some Q's about business development. Its certainly not something we learn in school, and most firms seem to do a poor job of training younger associates in business development. Yet this is a crucial skill as one progresses and can't just pick up all at once during senior associate years. So what can younger associates do to hone business development skills? Is it really just a matter of networking and staying in touch with contacts that may become future clients?


That's about 90% of it to start. Business development is really something like a combination of contacts + expertise + luck. The more contacts you have, the more likely you'll get lucky enough to have an opportunity when you and/or the firm are a good fit for a project.

But the other 10% that you can control is being a key member of a team. If you're the go to for a bank, PE shop, company, etc., that is a key client of the firm, you are doing a great BD job if you're keeping that client happy and keeping them using your firm. Keeping a client is as, if not more, important as trying to get a new one.

I know some very successful partners who basically just are continuing to be the go-to relationships for guys they have been working with for years.

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Thu Feb 25, 2016 3:42 pm
by itbdvorm
rpupkin wrote:
MurdockLLP wrote:For Spring OCI, do you think its best to say that you are interested in a specific practice group or that you are open to all practice groups? I am a 1L and am extremely interested in White Collar Defense and Securities Litigation, but I am not sure if firms would rather here that I am not sure what I want to practice and am hoping to use this summer to make a more definite conclusion.

I'm not a V15 partner, but I have a couple of suggestions:

1. I advise against focusing heavily on a particular practice group during 1L interviews. I think it's fine to express a general preference for litigation or corporate, but law students—and especially 1Ls—can get themselves in trouble when they start talking about specific practice areas. Sentences that start "I want to work in X practice area because...." often finish with a reason that bears little connection to the realities of practicing law in that area. Expressing a tentative preference is fine, but tread lightly.

2. In particular, it's risky to state that you're "extremely interested in white collar defense." At most big law firms, white collar defense does not bring in a lot of money, and the practice groups are small and relatively unstable. (It's good that you're also interested in securities litigation—in general, you want to make clear that you're open to working in commercial lit.) Again, it's fine to mention that you have some interest in white collar defense—and you should target firms with strong white collar practice groups if that's what interests you—but try not to make it the overwhelming focus of your interview.


Close enough. For 1L positions it's a crapshoot anyway.

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Mon Feb 29, 2016 9:25 pm
by morningstar
I saw that one other person had asked about being a pregnant associate, but I'm more worried about being (very) pregnant during OCI. This is going to be my only child, and the idea is that I'm having it now as opposed to when I start at a firm, but how much is this going to hurt me overall? Is there a good way to spin it by explaining that I chose to do it now rather than having to take maternity leave when I'm still fairly new to a firm?

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Tue Mar 01, 2016 11:56 am
by itbdvorm
morningstar wrote:I saw that one other person had asked about being a pregnant associate, but I'm more worried about being (very) pregnant during OCI. This is going to be my only child, and the idea is that I'm having it now as opposed to when I start at a firm, but how much is this going to hurt me overall? Is there a good way to spin it by explaining that I chose to do it now rather than having to take maternity leave when I'm still fairly new to a firm?


No one will say anything, and won't be an explicit modification. But - I am sorry to say - decent odds it hurts you somewhat. It's very hard to have a very small child and be a junior associate at a big firm. Unconscious bias will hurt you.

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Sat Mar 05, 2016 4:08 pm
by Anonymous User
1L who just accepted a SA at a NJL250 firm near my hometown. Was feeling pretty good about myself until a 3L I met at a party informed me that I was taking a risk and I would be in trouble at OCI if I was no offered. I have Top 20% ish grades at a lower T14. I obviously plan on working hard and being normal, but the firm is not a 100% offer firm. Are no offered 1L SA's untouchable at OCI?

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Sat Mar 05, 2016 4:30 pm
by sims1
Anonymous User wrote:1L who just accepted a SA at a NJL250 firm near my hometown. Was feeling pretty good about myself until a 3L I met at a party informed me that I was taking a risk and I would be in trouble at OCI if I was no offered. I have Top 20% ish grades at a lower T14. I obviously plan on working hard and being normal, but the firm is not a 100% offer firm. Are no offered 1L SA's untouchable at OCI?


How would they even know whether you got an offer? I think the concern is more if it's a 2L position and you get no offered..

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Tue Mar 08, 2016 4:21 am
by Anonymous User
itbdvorm - i have a question about a subject that you have sort of touched upon. I'm at a decent firm that does amazing work in one practice area. how easy would it be to lateral to a "prestigious" firm that is not that well-known in my practice area? In other words, how hard is it for a cahill levfin associate to lateral to skadden's levfin group? how hard would it be to lateral from milbank's project finance group to davis polk's? i know there are always a million other variables in the lateraling process, but i just wanted to know if you've seen a general trend for this question


Congrats again on making partnership bro, sounds like you really earned it

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Tue Mar 08, 2016 5:45 pm
by itbdvorm
sims1 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:1L who just accepted a SA at a NJL250 firm near my hometown. Was feeling pretty good about myself until a 3L I met at a party informed me that I was taking a risk and I would be in trouble at OCI if I was no offered. I have Top 20% ish grades at a lower T14. I obviously plan on working hard and being normal, but the firm is not a 100% offer firm. Are no offered 1L SA's untouchable at OCI?


How would they even know whether you got an offer? I think the concern is more if it's a 2L position and you get no offered..


A typical question is "were you invited to return?" But I only remember to ask it about half the time.

Obviously 2L no-offer is a tougher situation (and will definitely be asked).

I'd assume 50/50 chance it's asked, and 50/50 chance if you don't have an offer it's a big deal. If that actually does happen you can deal with it then, but (a) unless it's a 30% offer firm or something similar, you're probably getting an offer and (b) you can usually spin it pretty well if you don't get a 1L offer. So if there's a 10% chance of you not getting invited to return, then we're talking .1 * .5 * .5 = 2.5% chance of this working out badly for you. Go be in the 97.5%.

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Tue Mar 08, 2016 5:48 pm
by itbdvorm
Anonymous User wrote:itbdvorm - i have a question about a subject that you have sort of touched upon. I'm at a decent firm that does amazing work in one practice area. how easy would it be to lateral to a "prestigious" firm that is not that well-known in my practice area? In other words, how hard is it for a cahill levfin associate to lateral to skadden's levfin group? how hard would it be to lateral from milbank's project finance group to davis polk's? i know there are always a million other variables in the lateraling process, but i just wanted to know if you've seen a general trend for this question


Congrats again on making partnership bro, sounds like you really earned it


Thanks much.

Biggest question I have is why you want to make the move?

As you get more senior, client opportunities will focus on the prestige of the group rather than the firm. But, you may have an opportunity to make partner at the other firm if they are looking to grow that area and view you as an opportunistic hire.

I generally think you're better off being at the A practice at a B firm than the B practice at an A firm, unless the A firm is looking seriously at growing that practice. Lots of exceptions to this rule, but you have to test your thesis for any lateral move

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Tue Mar 22, 2016 11:29 am
by itbdvorm
I haven't read this book, but someone mentioned it to me. I suspect it's correct, and would recommend 1Ls read it to prepare for interviews (especially if you fear you're an "other"):

http://www.economist.com/news/business/ ... b-how-join

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Tue Mar 22, 2016 11:45 am
by Anonymous User
I'm headed to a V15 firm. I have the school/grades to clerk if I were so inclined, but not sure of my chances of landing a clerkship in NYC.

In terms of partnership prospects, do you think it's a disadvantage if a litigation associate chooses not to clerk? Because of my spouse, I'd prefer not to uproot my life to go clerk somewhere for a year. I've already been long-distance for all of law school.

I guess another way of asking the same question: does clerking simply correlate with partnership or does it actually help?

Re: V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Posted: Tue Mar 22, 2016 2:49 pm
by itbdvorm
Anonymous User wrote:I'm headed to a V15 firm. I have the school/grades to clerk if I were so inclined, but not sure of my chances of landing a clerkship in NYC.

In terms of partnership prospects, do you think it's a disadvantage if a litigation associate chooses not to clerk? Because of my spouse, I'd prefer not to uproot my life to go clerk somewhere for a year. I've already been long-distance for all of law school.

I guess another way of asking the same question: does clerking simply correlate with partnership or does it actually help?


Correlation not causation.

But no real chance of appellate work without an appellate clerkship

Lots of people work for a couple years then clerk, then return. Also AUSA/DOJ then return.