stoopkid13 wrote:It is ok to ask about pro bono at a second visit or offer dinner though right? (Also questions about work life balance, hours, and stuff like that?)
Fine to do it then, though would ask it of the more junior folks only just in general.
Here's the thing - we get it. Many of you went to law school instead of business school, law instead of finance, etc., because you have a bleeding heart and you want to save the world. Many of us did too once upon a time.
But while we (and most of our peers) "value" pro bono, each hour you spend saving a whale is an opportunity cost to me. I don't want you to be torn between a client losing his home and my closing. I want you focused on getting things done for me and my clients.
If I ask you about whether you'd be interested in my pro bono program, frankly I'd rather hear you say something like "well, while I appreciate that I may have some great opportunities to do pro bono here, I'm much more interested in your bank finance practice."
Firms tell you that we value pro bono because we know that you value pro bono. Some firms, and some partners, really do value pro bono. Even I do in theory. But in reality, I want you working on my stuff with the level of commitment and dedication it takes to get my stuff done right, well, and quickly, with as few distractions as possible.