First day in biglaw as a summer associate

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First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 19, 2012 11:04 am

Hey guys,

I start my biglaw job this Monday and to be perfectly honest, I am slightly terrified. Anyone have any preparation tips to get through the first week? Any advice on what to wear for the first day (firm is business casual and I am a female).

Thanks so much,
RJ

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Georgiana
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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby Georgiana » Sat May 19, 2012 11:16 am

The best thing you can do is to be social. Spend time getting to know your fellow summers and the associates with offices around yours. Once you feel like you have friends and people to talk to, it won't feel like such a stressful place.

As far as what to wear, I think the general rule is wear a suit. We were told biz cas but 9 out of 10 people wore a suit. Same happened with the first day starting as an associate, we were told biz cas but everyone wore a suit. Wear something you feel confident in and make sure you can take the jacket off and still be comfortable.

And above all, have fun. Yes its an extended job interview, but no one is expecting you to be an associate at this point. Do some work and do a good job and do it all on time, but go to the events and lunches and have fun. The summer committee/planners spend a lot of time and effort trying to make the summer fun, you should take advantage of it :)

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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 19, 2012 8:00 pm

My mid-size firm is also business casual. I'm going to do a suit on Day 1 but is it pretty normal to switch to business casual after that? Oh and I will be the only SA....

Reprisal
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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby Reprisal » Sat May 19, 2012 8:07 pm

If they've already seen you in a suit, wear slightly nicer business casual clothes on day one, imho.

Show them that you understand their firm culture from the get-go by not overdressing to the nines.

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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby Anonymous User » Sat May 19, 2012 8:15 pm

Anonymous User wrote:My mid-size firm is also business casual. I'm going to do a suit on Day 1 but is it pretty normal to switch to business casual after that? Oh and I will be the only SA....



Well my firm is also business casual and I start in a week. My firm explicitly said that you should wear a suit the first day and then transition into business casual for the rest of the summer. They also mentioned that you should always leave a suit in your office just in case you need to go to court or if you need to meet a client.

I don't think that you can go wrong with a suit the first day.

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monkey85
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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby monkey85 » Sat May 19, 2012 8:33 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Well my firm is also business casual and I start in a week. My firm explicitly said that you should wear a suit the first day and then transition into business casual for the rest oith a suit the first day.


I agree with the above: go with what your firm recommends.

My orientation program explicitly says business casual, even on the first day. I am doing that. But will follow the advice below:

Reprisal wrote:If they've already seen you in a suit, wear slightly nicer business casual clothes on day one, imho.Show them that you understand their firm culture from the get-go by not overdressing to the nines.

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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby JusticeJackson » Sun May 20, 2012 8:56 pm

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Last edited by JusticeJackson on Fri May 25, 2012 12:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Ludo!
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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby Ludo! » Sun May 20, 2012 9:07 pm

JusticeJackson wrote:I noticed that the guys that were no-offered were guys that tried really hard to be funny and social to fit in. Being polite and social is important, but you don't need to push at it. The no-offered guys pushed and offended people based on their comments or came across as too familiar. Just say hi to people and ask them about what they're working on.

Another thing: in my opinion, business casual = a suit minus the jacket and maybe the tie. Why not show up in a suit, and if you're clearly overdressed, take the jacket off and put it on the back of your chair?


You had multiple people in your class get no offered for being obnoxious? Jesus Christ.

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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby JusticeJackson » Sun May 20, 2012 9:25 pm

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Last edited by JusticeJackson on Fri May 25, 2012 12:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Ludo!
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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby Ludo! » Sun May 20, 2012 9:32 pm

JusticeJackson wrote:
Ludovico Technique wrote:
JusticeJackson wrote:I noticed that the guys that were no-offered were guys that tried really hard to be funny and social to fit in. Being polite and social is important, but you don't need to push at it. The no-offered guys pushed and offended people based on their comments or came across as too familiar. Just say hi to people and ask them about what they're working on.

Another thing: in my opinion, business casual = a suit minus the jacket and maybe the tie. Why not show up in a suit, and if you're clearly overdressed, take the jacket off and put it on the back of your chair?


You had multiple people in your class get no offered for being obnoxious? Jesus Christ.


No. This was my class plus what I learned from comparing notes with others. (In fact mostly from others, as my class was pretty atypical in how they gave offers and not relevant for folks that are not doing their SA in a secondary city during the worst of the recession). I think it's tempting to want to act wild to stand out as "the type of dude they want to hang out with." I think it's good advice for folks to know that strategy doesn't work, at least in my experience.


Ah gotcha. Thanks for the advice!

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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 22, 2012 6:20 pm

Started yesterday. Wore a suit minus the tie, but brought a tie with me. If they tell you business casual, I would not wear a full suit. You fit in better by being dressed the same as everyone else, no one likes a show off. However, you probably need to keep a jacket and/or tie in your office at all times. I will probably wear a suit minus tie every day from here on out, but once I get in I hang up the jacket for the day.

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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby ruski » Tue May 22, 2012 6:54 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Started yesterday. Wore a suit minus the tie, but brought a tie with me. If they tell you business casual, I would not wear a full suit. You fit in better by being dressed the same as everyone else, no one likes a show off. However, you probably need to keep a jacket and/or tie in your office at all times. I will probably wear a suit minus tie every day from here on out, but once I get in I hang up the jacket for the day.


let me know how this works out for you come july

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Bronte
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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby Bronte » Tue May 22, 2012 7:14 pm

Seems to be no clear consensus on what to wear the first day when the firm says business casual. Note, however, that most firms do not say that you should wear business casual but that you may wear business casual. The idea that you will be overdressed or disobeying an order by wearing a suit rings false.

I have a feeling the truth of the matter is that whether you wear a suit or business casual on the first day will have no material effect on your employment. Given the 98-100% offer rate at most of these firms, I have a felling that whether SAs wear a suit or business casual on their first day is not a predominant screening mechanism.

09042014
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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby 09042014 » Tue May 22, 2012 8:16 pm

I wore business casual because my firm said it was the dress code. I was the only one out of ten not wearing a suit. A little weird, but the attorneys don't wear suits so I doubt they care.

I'd go with suit day one. But go biz caz the second.

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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby alabamabound » Tue May 22, 2012 8:25 pm

Desert Fox wrote:I wore business casual because my firm said it was the dress code. I was the only one out of ten not wearing a suit. A little weird, but the attorneys don't wear suits so I doubt they care.

I'd go with suit day one. But go biz caz the second.


This was me too (though 1 out of 25ish in my case).

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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby Anonymous User » Tue May 22, 2012 8:37 pm

I guess thats one of the benefits of being at a biz formal firm: dressing right and fitting in was easy.

And as a general matter, these past 2 days have eased my mind a lot. I sort of expected the attorneys giving me assignments to just toss a stack of paper at me and delegate it to me like some kind of well-paid slave. But they are super nice, happy to talk about it and teach me what they can, and help me along, knowing full well that I have no clue. They said its much more about my enthusiasm, willingness to learn, and the effort I put in. So that certainly helped calm me down.

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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby anseladams » Thu May 24, 2012 7:28 am

Just about all summer associate programs at large law firms have wrapped up by now, and 100 percent offer rates rolled in from firms across the country. That’s great news, but we were more than a little disappointed that we didn’t hear any lurid tales of summer associates gone bad this year. :mrgreen:

SPAM

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Ludo!
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Re: First day in biglaw as a summer associate

Postby Ludo! » Thu May 24, 2012 7:32 am

Your spam is not even accurate. You must be a terrible lawyer




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