Consulting AFTER law firm

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Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 15, 2012 5:43 pm

After working for, say, 2 years at a V20 practicing corporate law, how feasible is it to lateral to consulting? Would it make a difference if the V20 was in a secondary market (e.g. SF, Houston, etc.)? Is it easier or more difficult than straight from law school, assuming you get to the first stage interview round (or is it the same at this point)? Anyone with experience in this matter?

Thanks

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Mce252
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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby Mce252 » Tue May 15, 2012 5:45 pm

Why would you even start out at a law firm if this was your goal? Do people do this?

concurrent fork
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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby concurrent fork » Tue May 15, 2012 5:54 pm

Why not go to business school?

ruski
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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby ruski » Tue May 15, 2012 6:04 pm

concurrent fork wrote:Why not go to business school?


ditto this. it'll prob be tough to go back to school but prob worth it if you can land a top mba program. come recruiting season, 2 years of doing corporate law will put you ahead of most other students who come to business school.

LawIdiot86
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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby LawIdiot86 » Tue May 15, 2012 6:25 pm

I knew three people who did this from a V10, a V50 and a V100. Generally the top consulting firms are about 50-60% MBAs and 40-50% PhD/JD/MDs. As long as you're willing to do absurd travel and absurd hours, they don't mind the prior firm career. I knew one woman who was a general practitioner MD in Ireland who jumped to McKinsey after 14 years as a doctor because she got bored. As long as you can pass their case study method, they don't mind. I'm also told that as a group, lawyers produce the highest percentage of principal (partners) at McKinsey.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby imchuckbass58 » Tue May 15, 2012 8:09 pm

LawIdiot86 wrote:As long as you can pass their case study method, they don't mind.


Well this is the trick, right? The overall pass rate (through the entire process resume -> offer) is less than 1%. Even from top law schools it's around 5%.

LawIdiot86 wrote: I'm also told that as a group, lawyers produce the highest percentage of principal (partners) at McKinsey.


This is verifiably not true.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby LawIdiot86 » Tue May 15, 2012 11:14 pm

imchuckbass58 wrote:
LawIdiot86 wrote:As long as you can pass their case study method, they don't mind.


Well this is the trick, right? The overall pass rate (through the entire process resume -> offer) is less than 1%. Even from top law schools it's around 5%.


Yes, I made it to the final round once and the second round once despite having an MBA and a T14 JD. I know many people who summered at V50s who couldn't get past the second round.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 15, 2012 11:50 pm

LawIdiot86 wrote:
imchuckbass58 wrote:
LawIdiot86 wrote:As long as you can pass their case study method, they don't mind.


Well this is the trick, right? The overall pass rate (through the entire process resume -> offer) is less than 1%. Even from top law schools it's around 5%.


Yes, I made it to the final round once and the second round once despite having an MBA and a T14 JD. I know many people who summered at V50s who couldn't get past the second round.


By "first round" do you mean the case interview, or something like the Mckinsey problem solving test?

Also, if anyone knows, do Bain and BCG have an equivalent of the "problem solving test" for non-MBAs?

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby concurrent fork » Wed May 16, 2012 12:26 am

LawIdiot86 wrote:I knew three people who did this from a V10, a V50 and a V100.

What drove them to do this? My understanding is that consultants make slightly less than their biglaw equivalents (signing bonus and higher YE bonus don't fully offset lower base salary), and they definitely work biglaw hours. Not to mention the huge amount of travel required. It seems that a mid-level at a V10 would have better exit options.

LawIdiot86 wrote:I know many people who summered at V50s who couldn't get past the second round.

Again, assuming they had full-time offers why were they trying to switch? I don't know anyone who was biglaw secure that even considered this.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby LawIdiot86 » Wed May 16, 2012 1:13 am

concurrent fork wrote:
LawIdiot86 wrote:I knew three people who did this from a V10, a V50 and a V100.

What drove them to do this? My understanding is that consultants make slightly less than their biglaw equivalents (signing bonus and higher YE bonus don't fully offset lower base salary), and they definitely work biglaw hours. Not to mention the huge amount of travel required. It seems that a mid-level at a V10 would have better exit options.

LawIdiot86 wrote:I know many people who summered at V50s who couldn't get past the second round.

Again, assuming they had full-time offers why were they trying to switch? I don't know anyone who was biglaw secure that even considered this.


They said they wanted broader challenges, more interesting problems and a greater ability to think outside the box then they had at their firms. I don't know why 4-5 of my friends tried this, but I assume it has to do with the idea traveling the world, working hands-on with clients, working with bigger name client contacts (CEO, not GC), working at the equivalent of Cravath/WLRK, broader exit options to other industries, etc.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby jackieburden » Wed May 16, 2012 1:33 am

anyone know what's on the mckinsey problem solving test exactly? What's the format like? Also how many really want to be lawyers if you could be a consultant and make $$$ traveling the world with the same hours?

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby Anonymous User » Wed May 16, 2012 1:38 am

jackieburden wrote:anyone know what's on the mckinsey problem solving test exactly? What's the format like? Also how many really want to be lawyers if you could be a consultant and make $$$ traveling the world with the same hours?


personally i would hands down choose any MBB offer over a school that was not HYS. If only they recruited at my school...

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby rayiner » Wed May 16, 2012 1:56 am

jackieburden wrote:anyone know what's on the mckinsey problem solving test exactly? What's the format like? Also how many really want to be lawyers if you could be a consultant and make $$$ traveling the world with the same hours?


First, management consulting is bullshit. Second, for many (probably most) people, traveling is a negative, not a positive. For consultants, "the world" usually means like Cleveland, Ohio. Further, a 70+ hour work week will take a toll on your family life, but extensive travel will absolutely destroy it. It also does a number on your health and on your immune system. My dad is a public health consultant, and gets to travel the world (rather than just to sites in industrial cities in the U.S.), and according to him the inside of a conference room in Afghanistan looks remarkably like the inside of a conference room in DC.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby TTTLS » Wed May 16, 2012 4:08 am

rayiner wrote:For consultants, "the world" usually means like Cleveland, Ohio. Further, a 70+ hour work week will take a toll on your family life, but extensive travel will absolutely destroy it.
Sadly, this is true. You will be on the road half or every year.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby DaftAndDirect » Wed May 16, 2012 6:05 am

rayiner wrote:
jackieburden wrote:anyone know what's on the mckinsey problem solving test exactly? What's the format like? Also how many really want to be lawyers if you could be a consultant and make $$$ traveling the world with the same hours?


First, management consulting is bullshit. Second, for many (probably most) people, traveling is a negative, not a positive. For consultants, "the world" usually means like Cleveland, Ohio. Further, a 70+ hour work week will take a toll on your family life, but extensive travel will absolutely destroy it. It also does a number on your health and on your immune system. My dad is a public health consultant, and gets to travel the world (rather than just to sites in industrial cities in the U.S.), and according to him the inside of a conference room in Afghanistan looks remarkably like the inside of a conference room in DC.


This. I work at a Big 4-esque consultancy so the work is nowhere near as cool as MBB, but the travel locations are basically the same in "coolness" and variety. That said, you spend most of your time bouncing between an offices and hotel rooms, which really don't change much from city to city, country to country. The travel is really only a perk if you're single/ have no responsiblities at home.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby neimanmarxist » Wed May 16, 2012 7:35 am

jackieburden wrote:anyone know what's on the mckinsey problem solving test exactly? What's the format like? Also how many really want to be lawyers if you could be a consultant and make $$$ traveling the world with the same hours?


there are several books on Amazon .com by former McKinsey employees that discuss the approach one should take to the problem solving test at length, with sample problems, etc.
You don't make as much as you would in Biglaw for a while, even at McKinsey.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby imchuckbass58 » Wed May 16, 2012 8:15 am

concurrent fork wrote:
LawIdiot86 wrote:I knew three people who did this from a V10, a V50 and a V100.

What drove them to do this? My understanding is that consultants make slightly less than their biglaw equivalents (signing bonus and higher YE bonus don't fully offset lower base salary), and they definitely work biglaw hours. Not to mention the huge amount of travel required. It seems that a mid-level at a V10 would have better exit options.

LawIdiot86 wrote:I know many people who summered at V50s who couldn't get past the second round.

Again, assuming they had full-time offers why were they trying to switch? I don't know anyone who was biglaw secure that even considered this.


I know people who have turned down and/or left Gibson, DPW, Skadden, S&C, Debevoise and Cravath, just to name a few, for MBB. I'm not saying it's the obvious choice, but some reasons are:

-The comp is actually not much lower first year, and can be higher. This year it's $135k base + $20k signing + variable performance bonus between $10k and $40k. It also rises much faster (~15-20%/year is typical), with the caveat that believe it or not, median tenure might actually be slightly shorter than some biglaw firms (2-3 years versus 3-4 years).

-Some people think the work is more interesting. Some people would argue that as a consultant you work on the business problems clients actually care about, rather than taking care of the legal BS they have to deal with. This is a personal preference - I don't think there is a definitively right answer.

-You get a lot more responsibility very quickly. It's not a given, but it's not particularly rare to interact with very senior (VP/C-level) clients within your first year or two. You'll also almost definitely be given lower-level client relationships to "manage" within that time. You're given a lot of latitude to direct your own work and it typically isn't reviewed by 5 layers above you before being given to the client.

-I personally think the hours are better than biglaw. It's much more consistent - you will almost never pull an all nighter, almost never work weekends, and Fridays are pretty much always 9-5. You work hard M-Th, but total I think an average week is probably 60 hours or so. Downside is more travel, but this depends partially on location. Roughly 66%-75% of the work in MBB NY offices are local because there are so many clients here. You can also deliberately select for this (i.e., if you do financial services in NY, you will virtually never travel).

-Again, this is in the eye of the beholder, but some would argue exit options are better. They are certainly more varied. Most common path is a strategy job/chief of staff position in "industry" (effectively in-house, but in a business role). But especially from MBB, it's quite common for people to do private equity/hedge funds, other finance jobs, nonprofit management, government, etc.

There are downsides too, most notably travel, the more political work environment, and feeling like you don't actually have real expertise and are just bullshitting (not always true, but can feel like it). But there's a pretty compelling argument to be made.
Last edited by imchuckbass58 on Wed May 16, 2012 8:19 am, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby imchuckbass58 » Wed May 16, 2012 8:16 am

jackieburden wrote:anyone know what's on the mckinsey problem solving test exactly? What's the format like? Also how many really want to be lawyers if you could be a consultant and make $$$ traveling the world with the same hours?


Download a sample:

http://www.mckinsey.com/Careers/Apply/P ... lving_test

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby concurrent fork » Wed May 16, 2012 10:29 am

Thanks for the info. I had always thought the base salary started lower than that, but with the numbers you provided I suppose it makes more sense.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby Anonymous User » Wed May 16, 2012 4:32 pm

imchuckbass58 wrote:
LawIdiot86 wrote:As long as you can pass their case study method, they don't mind.


Well this is the trick, right? The overall pass rate (through the entire process resume -> offer) is less than 1%. Even from top law schools it's around 5%.

This is verifiably not true.


I'd really like to know where this statistic (which keeps being brought up in consulting threads) comes from. During my three years at a T10, every student at my school who went through the MBB interview process either got offers or at least made it to the last round. I realize that this isn't statistically representative of anything, but it at least signals that getting an offer might be a little easier than its made out to be.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby imchuckbass58 » Wed May 16, 2012 7:43 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
I'd really like to know where this statistic (which keeps being brought up in consulting threads) comes from. During my three years at a T10, every student at my school who went through the MBB interview process either got offers or at least made it to the last round. I realize that this isn't statistically representative of anything, but it at least signals that getting an offer might be a little easier than its made out to be.


I am looking at CLS statistics that indicate that over the least few years, 1 or 2 students have received offers from McKinsey each year, out of an interview pool varying from 40-80 people depending on the year. This matches up with my anecdotal experience with the process.

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby Anonymous User » Wed May 16, 2012 7:45 pm

Ya, but that doesn't include how many self-select out after passing the first round. I assume many of those people would get firm offers then quit the consulting process, right?

For another point of reference: 2 out of 3 people at my T10 who decided to go through with interviews got offers at M this year. The 3rd made it to the final round, but was told it was an issue w/ his "fit".

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby imchuckbass58 » Wed May 16, 2012 7:59 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Ya, but that doesn't include how many self-select out after passing the first round. I assume many of those people would get firm offers then quit the consulting process, right?

For another point of reference: 2 out of 3 people at my T10 who decided to go through with interviews got offers at M this year. The 3rd made it to the final round, but was told it was an issue w/ his "fit".


Some. One year for CLS:

Callbacks extended: 22

Callbacks accepted: 14

Offers: 2

Offers accepted: 2

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Re: Consulting AFTER law firm

Postby freakkerry » Mon Jun 11, 2012 1:24 am

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