I have a few more call backs at firms I'm not particularly thrilled about (not jazzed about pure "free market" firms), so it's looking like my decision is going to come down to S&C and Jones Day, both in NYC. I am genuinely unsure of what I would like practice, as their are elements of both corporate (deal) and litigation work that I find appealing. I'll say that I think corporate would be a better lifestyle fit for me, as I tend to prefer a boom bust work rhythm as opposed to a slow burn. On the other hand, the competitive aspect of litigation is definitely appealing as well.
I genuinely liked almost everyone I met at either firm, so there wasn't a clear "culture" winner for me, at least based on call-backs. Here's some important criteria:
-Exit options are important, especially to the extent that they would allow for more national mobility (assume a market where neither firm has an office).
-Face time can't be important.
-I'm by no means antisocial, but not looking for a buddy-buddy kind of place necessarily (want to use time away to be with family, etc., not coworkers).
My general thinking is that JD takes more of a long view to retaining its associates, and that this is manifest in a more relaxed culture, and that people are not desperately trying to flee within 2-3 years. However, I'm not sure that I'll want to be in NYC forever, so if S&C is going to be the better career investment (assuming I'm not partner track at either place), then it might be the better call.
I'd love to hear thoughts from people who have worked at either firm, but am also open to considering evidence free speculation.
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