rayiner wrote:Anonymous User wrote:I think we sort of agree, but you're creating a false dichotomy. No one's denying that people who were no-offered probably did something wrong. The question is whether the summer associate's mistake(s) would have still turned into a no-offer if the firm were doing better in terms of finances and incoming work. I'm sure there are people who screwed up so significantly that not even the busiest, most overly-burdened firm would want to keep them on. However, I don't think that's the case in all (or perhaps even most) instances, as evidenced by some of the stories above (people being no-offered because of issues that were either very fixable or only happened once or twice).
Re: being no-offered for fixable mistakes that happen only once or twice... do you really think that in a situation where 2 of 30 summers are no offered, the other 28 turned in work product without so much as a fixable mistake that happened once or twice?
You can't take reviews at face value. Attorneys at firms aren't professional HR people. They hate doing these reviews. Everyone does. People hate pointing out flaws in other peoples' work. Watch the show "Chopped" sometime. See what the judges say about contestants' dishes while discussing amongst themselves, but then see how they candy-coat it when telling the contestant why they got chopped.
The biggest danger to just accepting these reviews at face value is that it can blind you to fixable issues. If a summer got no-offered because he was a complainer (people develop reputations for this very quickly), nobody is going to tell him or her that at his or her exit review. They'll point to some inconsequential mistake in their work product, the kind that all the other summers made too. There's a whole host of issues that can be the subject of firm gossip, get you no-offered, yet never be mentioned in your exit review.
For example, I got an offer at a firm that has several no offers where people are saying they only messed up on the first assignment. I'm pretty sure I got crappy feedback on an assignment, and my writing sucks. My review said, "everyone loves you, but we are going to help you learn to write better" and I got an offer.
These same people aren't really seeing a mediocre first assignment and saying "DING." You are getting personality dinged. For sure.