Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

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PennBull
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Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby PennBull » Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:59 am

What's your opinion on bidding firms in LA without ever even been in California before?

Is it difficult to interview with? Is it generally a bad idea?

There are some firms whose offices/partners in LA I would prefer working for over their NY offices. Wondering if I should bid the office higher/at all.
Last edited by PennBull on Tue Jun 26, 2012 12:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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tedalbany
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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby tedalbany » Tue Jun 26, 2012 12:08 pm

Sounds like an awful idea. Just mass mail any CA firms you want. At least then you aren't wasting valuable bids.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby jessuf » Tue Jun 26, 2012 2:39 pm

Isn't LA considered a primary market?

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fanmingrui
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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby fanmingrui » Tue Jun 26, 2012 2:43 pm

LA really likes ties. Absent top grades from a T14 (which will get your foot in the door almost anywhere) you're probably going to need to show some sophistication about the area and have a pretty compelling narrative about why you want to be there.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby 071816 » Tue Jun 26, 2012 2:46 pm

fanmingrui wrote:LA really likes ties. Absent top grades from a T14 (which will get your foot in the door almost anywhere) you're probably going to need to show some sophistication about the area and have a pretty compelling narrative about why you want to be there.

Based on what I've heard, this is pretty spot on.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 26, 2012 6:42 pm

chimp wrote:
fanmingrui wrote:LA really likes ties. Absent top grades from a T14 (which will get your foot in the door almost anywhere) you're probably going to need to show some sophistication about the area and have a pretty compelling narrative about why you want to be there.

Based on what I've heard, this is pretty spot on.
Agree with the above. I did this last year (screening interviews for LA firms without any ties) and didn't get a single callback. I got ~10 callbacks in NYC without any significant ties there. The LA interviews weren't "bad," but every single one asked why I wanted to be in LA. You better have a damn good answer to that question if you go this route.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby mvpforme » Tue Jun 26, 2012 6:48 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
chimp wrote:
fanmingrui wrote:LA really likes ties. Absent top grades from a T14 (which will get your foot in the door almost anywhere) you're probably going to need to show some sophistication about the area and have a pretty compelling narrative about why you want to be there.

Based on what I've heard, this is pretty spot on.
Agree with the above. I did this last year (screening interviews for LA firms without any ties) and didn't get a single callback. I got ~10 callbacks in NYC without any significant ties there. The LA interviews weren't "bad," but every single one asked why I wanted to be in LA. You better have a damn good answer to that question if you go this route.


Could you please elaborate on your law school and/or class rank?

Also, what do people consider to be "significant ties" to LA? Immediate family? Significant other? Work in LA?

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby chasgoose » Tue Jun 26, 2012 7:20 pm

LA is not like any other city in the US (especially those on the East Coast). It's not for everyone and also its a city that's slow to reveal its greatness, which makes it pretty easy to spot people who don't have any ties whatsoever. Things that could help show you know what you are talking about are having an opinion on whether you like the west side, pronouncing Los Feliz correctly (Los FEEliz), your favorite highway alternatives (Olympic Blvd. instead of the 10, the various canyon roads for getting to the valley) referring to all highways with a "the" first, etc. Lots of people move out to LA every year and are miserable and leave as soon as they can. If you have an east coast background, law firms are going to want some kind of assurance that you won't realize you hate LA and leave as soon as possible before they can make money off you...Saying you want to be near the beach when you are applying to firms that are mostly downtown isn't going to cut it.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby crit_racer » Tue Jun 26, 2012 7:58 pm

Interested in this as well. Have some ties (extended family) but have been there many times and can articulate a legit sounding reason for wanting to be there IMO. We'll see if that's enough.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 26, 2012 9:04 pm

Got LA /w zero ties, although I fall under the "exception" of T14 people /w grades added above. Chasgoose's point is good - you need to know and demonstrate your knowledge of the city even if you haven't lived there. Also realize that every interview will probably have some form of "why LA," and the longer you linger on ties the worse off you'll be - better to briefly address it (and downplay how small your connection is) while shifting the topic of conversation to something else that interviewers like to talk about in the same answer. If your answer keeps on topic they'll probably ask follow ups...

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby PennBull » Tue Jun 26, 2012 10:32 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Got LA /w zero ties, although I fall under the "exception" of T14 people /w grades added above. Chasgoose's point is good - you need to know and demonstrate your knowledge of the city even if you haven't lived there. Also realize that every interview will probably have some form of "why LA," and the longer you linger on ties the worse off you'll be - better to briefly address it (and downplay how small your connection is) while shifting the topic of conversation to something else that interviewers like to talk about in the same answer. If your answer keeps on topic they'll probably ask follow ups...


Could this user PM me? I'd like to chat more about this.

Here's my specific situation: I want to bid O'Melveny & Meyers in LA, so I can work in the office that has their sports group. I want to work in sports someday, and it's pretty critical I work for the offices that have the sports groups so that I have any shot of actually working FOR the sports groups sometime down the road (this sort of thing usually doesn't happen right away).

I have a very adaptable personality, so I can say with confidence that I would not hate LA. Maybe I won't love it, but I'm not the kind of person to hate anything.

That said, I've never been to California, and won't pretend to be. My only approach to this firm is "I want to work here because this is the work I want to do." I won't be so narrow as to say ONLY sports, of course, but it will be clear that the LA office is perfect for me.

I can bid both LA and NYC, and potentially get both interviews.

I just am nervous about wasting a valuable bid (we get 60, but only the top 20 are really worth anything) on an office I have no shot with, when I can use that for Generic NYC Firm that has no sports group in ANY office but is a good biglaw position that is in my grade range.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 26, 2012 10:42 pm

It worked for me. I'm working at a top LA-based firm and had never been there before the CB. T14 ~top 40%. I have had somewhat of a history of moving around the country for UG and LS and just shot them straight about my interest in Cali. My experience was that people here think so highly of SoCal that "why wouldn't somebody want to move here?" Then again, this is not the normal experience.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby chasgoose » Tue Jun 26, 2012 10:52 pm

PennBull wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Got LA /w zero ties, although I fall under the "exception" of T14 people /w grades added above. Chasgoose's point is good - you need to know and demonstrate your knowledge of the city even if you haven't lived there. Also realize that every interview will probably have some form of "why LA," and the longer you linger on ties the worse off you'll be - better to briefly address it (and downplay how small your connection is) while shifting the topic of conversation to something else that interviewers like to talk about in the same answer. If your answer keeps on topic they'll probably ask follow ups...


Could this user PM me? I'd like to chat more about this.

Here's my specific situation: I want to bid O'Melveny & Meyers in LA, so I can work in the office that has their sports group. I want to work in sports someday, and it's pretty critical I work for the offices that have the sports groups so that I have any shot of actually working FOR the sports groups sometime down the road (this sort of thing usually doesn't happen right away).

I have a very adaptable personality, so I can say with confidence that I would not hate LA. Maybe I won't love it, but I'm not the kind of person to hate anything.

That said, I've never been to California, and won't pretend to be. My only approach to this firm is "I want to work here because this is the work I want to do." I won't be so narrow as to say ONLY sports, of course, but it will be clear that the LA office is perfect for me.

I can bid both LA and NYC, and potentially get both interviews.

I just am nervous about wasting a valuable bid (we get 60, but only the top 20 are really worth anything) on an office I have no shot with, when I can use that for Generic NYC Firm that has no sports group in ANY office but is a good biglaw position that is in my grade range.


TBH, I would be more worried about saying you really want to work in any big law firm's "sports group." They exist, but no firm is going to hire you because you want to do sports law. It's not a major earner anywhere. Firms that do sports law do make money, but also get to say that they represent X team/league and use the publicity to get corporate clients that actually sustain the firm. Big law firms are looking for cannon fodder to help on their bread and butter corporate work. Sports law is way too niche for an incoming associate. Once you get a job at a firm with a sports group, you whore yourself out to them so they keep giving you work, but don't go in saying you want to do sports law.

Also when you say you want to work in sports that is an obvious sign to law firms that you want to actually work for a sports team/league and not for the firm itself and are just using the firm as a stepping stone. Even though most people are using firms as a stepping stone to get somewhere else, its easier to hide in other practice areas.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby PennBull » Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:05 pm

chasgoose wrote:
TBH, I would be more worried about saying you really want to work in any big law firm's "sports group." They exist, but no firm is going to hire you because you want to do sports law. It's not a major earner anywhere. Firms that do sports law do make money, but also get to say that they represent X team/league and use the publicity to get corporate clients that actually sustain the firm. Big law firms are looking for cannon fodder to help on their bread and butter corporate work. Sports law is way too niche for an incoming associate. Once you get a job at a firm with a sports group, you whore yourself out to them so they keep giving you work, but don't go in saying you want to do sports law.

Also when you say you want to work in sports that is an obvious sign to law firms that you want to actually work for a sports team/league and not for the firm itself and are just using the firm as a stepping stone. Even though most people are using firms as a stepping stone to get somewhere else, its easier to hide in other practice areas.


You missed the part where I said "I won't be so narrow as to say ONLY sports, of course." I would never emphasize it in an interview.

Edit: I also already know the chances of actually getting sports law someday down the road. I'm interested in maximizing my chances of getting into sports. If I don't get the sports group work, it won't destroy my life or anything. I'd still be happy doing general corporate work in LA.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby chasgoose » Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:50 pm

PennBull wrote:
chasgoose wrote:
TBH, I would be more worried about saying you really want to work in any big law firm's "sports group." They exist, but no firm is going to hire you because you want to do sports law. It's not a major earner anywhere. Firms that do sports law do make money, but also get to say that they represent X team/league and use the publicity to get corporate clients that actually sustain the firm. Big law firms are looking for cannon fodder to help on their bread and butter corporate work. Sports law is way too niche for an incoming associate. Once you get a job at a firm with a sports group, you whore yourself out to them so they keep giving you work, but don't go in saying you want to do sports law.

Also when you say you want to work in sports that is an obvious sign to law firms that you want to actually work for a sports team/league and not for the firm itself and are just using the firm as a stepping stone. Even though most people are using firms as a stepping stone to get somewhere else, its easier to hide in other practice areas.


You missed the part where I said "I won't be so narrow as to say ONLY sports, of course." I would never emphasize it in an interview.

Edit: I also already know the chances of actually getting sports law someday down the road. I'm interested in maximizing my chances of getting into sports. If I don't get the sports group work, it won't destroy my life or anything. I'd still be happy doing general corporate work in LA.


Right, but if your only approach to a firm in LA ties-wise is, "I want to work here because this is the work I want to do," and that work is the sports group, that's not going to cut it. I would focus on NYC.

Also for the OMM sports group, you want the OMM office in Century City, not the OMM office in LA (technically Century City is in LA, but OMM LA is downtown, whereas OMM Century City is in Century City, closer to Beverly Hills/West Side). Based on their website --LinkRemoved--, OMM Century City isn't coming to Penn so you could only interview with people from the downtown LA office. What little benefit the sports group talk would have for you at OMM Century City is going to mean nothing to the people from the LA office/potentially demonstrate you didn't do your research about the firm. I would recommend mass mailing OMM Century City and using your bid elsewhere...

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby fanmingrui » Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:56 pm

1. Use all bids on Proskauer NY
2. Mail resume to David Stern
3. ???
4. Profit

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby PennBull » Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:57 pm

chasgoose wrote:
PennBull wrote:
You missed the part where I said "I won't be so narrow as to say ONLY sports, of course." I would never emphasize it in an interview.

Edit: I also already know the chances of actually getting sports law someday down the road. I'm interested in maximizing my chances of getting into sports. If I don't get the sports group work, it won't destroy my life or anything. I'd still be happy doing general corporate work in LA.


Right, but if your only approach to a firm in LA ties-wise is, "I want to work here because this is the work I want to do," and that work is the sports group, that's not going to cut it. I would focus on NYC.


Again, I would never JUST say the sports group. I know that's a ticket to Failtown. I would put together a whole package for the specific LA office, not just sports.


Also for the OMM sports group, you want the OMM office in Century City, not the OMM office in LA (technically Century City is in LA, but OMM LA is downtown, whereas OMM Century City is in Century City, closer to Beverly Hills/West Side).


Good catch. I wonder why they have both.

This is still a relevant discussion though. I'm really curious as to the level of insularity of Los Angeles; I might stumble upon another firm with the same issue.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby chasgoose » Wed Jun 27, 2012 12:04 am

PennBull wrote:[
Good catch. I wonder why they have both.

This is still a relevant discussion though. I'm really curious as to the level of insularity of Los Angeles; I might stumble upon another firm with the same issue.


They have both because LA is fairly spread out. Century City is about 20 minutes from downtown w/o any traffic and during working hours more like 30 min-1 hour. I'm sure at some point the partners who lived on the west side didn't want to commute to downtown anymore and thus the Century City office happened (also LA probably encouraged big local companies to buy real estate in Century City when it was made in the '60s). GDC and Sheppard Mullin also have both CC and downtown offices. Start google mapping locations of the LA firms you are interested in so you get a feel for the layout.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby PennBull » Wed Jun 27, 2012 12:07 am

chasgoose wrote:
PennBull wrote:[
Good catch. I wonder why they have both.

This is still a relevant discussion though. I'm really curious as to the level of insularity of Los Angeles; I might stumble upon another firm with the same issue.


They have both because LA is fairly spread out. Century City is about 20 minutes from downtown w/o any traffic and during working hours more like 30 min-1 hour. I'm sure at some point the partners who lived on the west side didn't want to commute to downtown anymore and thus the Century City office happened (also LA probably encouraged big local companies to buy real estate in Century City when it was made in the '60s). GDC and Sheppard Mullin also have both CC and downtown offices. Start google mapping locations of the LA firms you are interested in so you get a feel for the layout.


Well I figured that much; I was more curious as to why/if they'd make a difference for hiring.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby chasgoose » Wed Jun 27, 2012 12:22 am

PennBull wrote:
chasgoose wrote:
PennBull wrote:[
Good catch. I wonder why they have both.

This is still a relevant discussion though. I'm really curious as to the level of insularity of Los Angeles; I might stumble upon another firm with the same issue.


They have both because LA is fairly spread out. Century City is about 20 minutes from downtown w/o any traffic and during working hours more like 30 min-1 hour. I'm sure at some point the partners who lived on the west side didn't want to commute to downtown anymore and thus the Century City office happened (also LA probably encouraged big local companies to buy real estate in Century City when it was made in the '60s). GDC and Sheppard Mullin also have both CC and downtown offices. Start google mapping locations of the LA firms you are interested in so you get a feel for the layout.


Well I figured that much; I was more curious as to why/if they'd make a difference for hiring.


I think its just because certain practice groups are in certain offices for whatever reason. For example, the sports/entertainment group is probably in Century City because that's where the agencies are. CAA is literally across the street, ICM is a few buildings down the street, etc. If the agencies aren't in CC, they are most certainly NOT in downtown, but rather Beverly Hills like UTA/WME or West LA/Santa Monica.

It does make a difference for hiring because you aren't going to get any work with a certain group if they are all in the CC office and you are in the LA office and vice versa. According to my friend at OMM LA, they might as well be in different cities, he interacts occasionally w/ OMM CC, but very rarely. Furthermore, for whatever reason, OMM CC and OMM LA do OCI's separately (outside of CA schools, OMM CC seems to only do OCI at T6 schools) so you don't want to go into a screener with OMM LA gunning for work at OMM CC without at least acknowledging the difference.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby PennBull » Wed Jun 27, 2012 12:35 am

chasgoose wrote:
I think its just because certain practice groups are in certain offices for whatever reason. For example, the sports/entertainment group is probably in Century City because that's where the agencies are. CAA is literally across the street, ICM is a few buildings down the street, etc. If the agencies aren't in CC, they are most certainly NOT in downtown, but rather Beverly Hills like UTA/WME or West LA/Santa Monica.

It does make a difference for hiring because you aren't going to get any work with a certain group if they are all in the CC office and you are in the LA office and vice versa. According to my friend at OMM LA, they might as well be in different cities, he interacts occasionally w/ OMM CC, but very rarely. Furthermore, for whatever reason, OMM CC and OMM LA do OCI's separately (outside of CA schools, OMM CC seems to only do OCI at T6 schools) so you don't want to go into a screener with OMM LA gunning for work at OMM CC without at least acknowledging the difference.


Very solid help. Thanks bud.

What are your thoughts on bidding the NYC office/getting a transfer over to CC someday? Assume that if I can't, I'd be content working in general corporate law in NYC.

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Re: Bidding/Interviewing LA Firms with Zero Ties

Postby r6_philly » Wed Jun 27, 2012 12:51 am

PennBull wrote:

This is still a relevant discussion though. I'm really curious as to the level of insularity of Los Angeles; I might stumble upon another firm with the same issue.


Does not seem to be very high for IP in hightech.




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