WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

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WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 10:42 am

Any thoughts on the pros and cons to either of these firms? I had great experiences at both, although I interacted with Wilmer lawyers this summer and I thought they were awesome (meaning that I had good experiences with Wilmer outside the interviewing process).

Some considerations:

1) Work-life balance (as much as you can get it in biglaw) is important, so do either of these firms have a less inhumane reputation?

2) Not sure exactly what I want to do (started out interested in lit, but then corporate has seemed more and more interesting the more I learn about it), but it seems like both firms are open to summers trying both.

Thoughts?

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 11:11 am

Anonymous User wrote:Any thoughts on the pros and cons to either of these firms? I had great experiences at both, although I interacted with Wilmer lawyers this summer and I thought they were awesome (meaning that I had good experiences with Wilmer outside the interviewing process).

Some considerations:

1) Work-life balance (as much as you can get it in biglaw) is important, so do either of these firms have a less inhumane reputation?

2) Not sure exactly what I want to do (started out interested in lit, but then corporate has seemed more and more interesting the more I learn about it), but it seems like both firms are open to summers trying both.

Thoughts?


I've heard negative things about WilmerHale's culture ("they're miserable"/horrible work-life balance) and got a weird vibe at my own cb there. They seem nice, but a bit uptight/less friendly. They are great for litigation, though. Don't know much about Goodwin.

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 11:30 am

What do you mean by "weird vibe"? And were these stories about their culture/work-life balance from people who worked/summered there?

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 11:36 am

By weird vibe I just meant that I didn't feel like I fit in. I'm a bit more outgoing/laid back/less nerdy than the WH lawyers I met. They all seemed polite, friendly, and legitimately interested in the work they received, though The anecdotes were from older lawyers from various firms in Boston.

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 11:38 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Any thoughts on the pros and cons to either of these firms? I had great experiences at both, although I interacted with Wilmer lawyers this summer and I thought they were awesome (meaning that I had good experiences with Wilmer outside the interviewing process).

Some considerations:

1) Work-life balance (as much as you can get it in biglaw) is important, so do either of these firms have a less inhumane reputation?

2) Not sure exactly what I want to do (started out interested in lit, but then corporate has seemed more and more interesting the more I learn about it), but it seems like both firms are open to summers trying both.

Thoughts?


I've heard negative things about WilmerHale's culture ("they're miserable"/horrible work-life balance) and got a weird vibe at my own cb there. They seem nice, but a bit uptight/less friendly. They are great for litigation, though. Don't know much about Goodwin.


I've never heard negative things about WilmerHale's culture but I have heard pretty bad things about Goodwin's in terms of work/life and generally niceness. If you are considering corporate you should note that WilmerHale's corporate practice seems to be shrinking (e.g. lost important partners to the newly opened Latham office) and is very tech/life science focused. Some partners I have spoken to at other firms have questions about the outlook of the boston corporate practices going forward but take that with a grain of salt since who knows if they know what they are talking about.

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 1:42 pm

A friend of mine summered at Wilmer and loved it. However, I've heard from random people that Goodwin is a sweatshop.

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 1:44 pm

Can we add Ropes to this discussion? Opinions? Anecdotal story? Rumor that they get rid of half the original summer class after 2 years?

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:14 pm

Summered at Wilmer— the place is phenomenal, for work and for culture.

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 2:29 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Can we add Ropes to this discussion? Opinions? Anecdotal story? Rumor that they get rid of half the original summer class after 2 years?

I don't think attrition rates are published, but think of it this way: Ropes had a summer class (56) roughly the size of GP's (28) and WH's (30) put together. It's the largest office in Boston, but it's not twice as large as the other two. Either they're anticipating a major expansion (unlikely, if only because this isn't an abnormal summer class size for them), or people tend to leave them faster.

Anyways, between these firms, I think unless you have a strong practice area preference (something like PE for Ropes) it should really be about fit. I was a summer at one of these places and liked it a lot; I don't think I would have clicked as well if I'd wound up elsewhere, based on my interviews and interactions. My friends at the other two places felt similarly. The work/life balance is going to be roughly the same at each, and will probably be more practice area specific than firm specific.

EDIT: I will say that Wilmer probably has more of a pro bono commitment, if that's your thing.

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 4:06 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Can we add Ropes to this discussion? Opinions? Anecdotal story? Rumor that they get rid of half the original summer class after 2 years?


Where did you hear this? I've heard rumors of this, and haven't heard anything substantiated.

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 4:47 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Can we add Ropes to this discussion? Opinions? Anecdotal story? Rumor that they get rid of half the original summer class after 2 years?


Where did you hear this? I've heard rumors of this, and haven't heard anything substantiated.


I think the quoted anonymous is just doing the math. It is almost certain that half of the summer class is gone every 3 years or so. FWIW, I was told that they are expecting to bring a slightly smaller summer class this year. Also, if you look at the summer class as a percentage of total current lawyer headcount Wilmer and Ropes aren't far apart (~9-11%).

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 5:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Can we add Ropes to this discussion? Opinions? Anecdotal story? Rumor that they get rid of half the original summer class after 2 years?


Where did you hear this? I've heard rumors of this, and haven't heard anything substantiated.


I think the quoted anonymous is just doing the math. It is almost certain that half of the summer class is gone every 3 years or so. FWIW, I was told that they are expecting to bring a slightly smaller summer class this year. Also, if you look at the summer class as a percentage of total current lawyer headcount Wilmer and Ropes aren't far apart (~9-11%).


It's one thing if people are leaving on their own, and another thing if they're pushing half their class out in 2 years

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 5:03 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Can we add Ropes to this discussion? Opinions? Anecdotal story? Rumor that they get rid of half the original summer class after 2 years?


Where did you hear this? I've heard rumors of this, and haven't heard anything substantiated.


I think the quoted anonymous is just doing the math. It is almost certain that half of the summer class is gone every 3 years or so. FWIW, I was told that they are expecting to bring a slightly smaller summer class this year. Also, if you look at the summer class as a percentage of total current lawyer headcount Wilmer and Ropes aren't far apart (~9-11%).


It's one thing if people are leaving on their own, and another thing if they're pushing half their class out in 2 years


Yeah. My hesitation about choosing Ropes is based on that same question. In this economy, however, I just don't see how the exit options could possibly be there for 20-30 lawyers every 2-3 years. A good portion of them might be voluntary but I can't help but think that some are involuntary as well.

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Re: WilmerHale vs. Goodwin (Boston)

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 07, 2012 9:11 pm

While we're at it, can we also add Bingham?




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