Texas Big 2 vs National V15 Firm in Dallas

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Re: Texas Big 2 vs National V15 Firm in Dallas

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 11, 2012 3:17 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Here's my take:



With all that said, it sounds like you've got your mind made up - so I would go with Weil or GDC. I would make that choice with no reservations if partnership prospects were not a consideration. The pay there is substantially higher than the Texas-based firms (not in years 1-3 really, but definitely for midlevel and more senior associates).


My thinking is that partner at any of these firms (GDC, Weil, BB, VE) is a relatively slim chance, though admittedly less likely at the nationals, and therefore that shouldn't be a big factor in a decision between them.

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Re: Texas Big 2 vs National V15 Firm in Dallas

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 11, 2012 3:25 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Here's my take:



With all that said, it sounds like you've got your mind made up - so I would go with Weil or GDC. I would make that choice with no reservations if partnership prospects were not a consideration. The pay there is substantially higher than the Texas-based firms (not in years 1-3 really, but definitely for midlevel and more senior associates).


My thinking is that partner at any of these firms (GDC, Weil, BB, VE) is a relatively slim chance, though admittedly less likely at the nationals, and therefore that shouldn't be a big factor in a decision between them.


I would agree - but I would add that the partnership chances at BB and VE Dallas are worse (or at least more unpredictable) than the chances at BB or VE Houston. Which is why I think the choice to go to GDC or Weil over those two makes good sense.

One thing to consider about partnership - going to the most "prestigious" or highest Vault-ranked firm in town doesn't mean you can simply jump down a notch when it comes time to make partner. For example, the strongest Dallas-based firms aren't going to hire some intown lateral 7th or 8th year associate and make them partner. I tell people to pick the firm that you want to be at until the time you go in house. Unless you lateral early on (in which case, there's no benefit to picking the NYC firm over Dallas since the pay difference is negligible), it is very, very difficult to lateral as a mid- or senior-level associate and make partner at your new firm. It is actually much easier to jump up a notch in "prestige" once you've proven to be a successful partner at your more regional firm.

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Re: Texas Big 2 vs National V15 Firm in Dallas

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 11, 2012 4:08 pm

Anonymous User wrote:One thing to consider about partnership - going to the most "prestigious" or highest Vault-ranked firm in town doesn't mean you can simply jump down a notch when it comes time to make partner. For example, the strongest Dallas-based firms aren't going to hire some intown lateral 7th or 8th year associate and make them partner. I tell people to pick the firm that you want to be at until the time you go in house. Unless you lateral early on (in which case, there's no benefit to picking the NYC firm over Dallas since the pay difference is negligible), it is very, very difficult to lateral as a mid- or senior-level associate and make partner at your new firm. It is actually much easier to jump up a notch in "prestige" once you've proven to be a successful partner at your more regional firm.


This advice is credited and the contrary is a common misperception on this site. While perhaps in NYC it may be routine to lateral down the Vault/NLJ ladder and be made a non-equity partner right off the bat, it is super, super rare to do so in Texas and some other secondary markets where the "more prestigious" Vault firm has a relatively small footprint.

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Re: Texas Big 2 vs National V15 Firm in Dallas

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 11, 2012 4:13 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:One thing to consider about partnership - going to the most "prestigious" or highest Vault-ranked firm in town doesn't mean you can simply jump down a notch when it comes time to make partner. For example, the strongest Dallas-based firms aren't going to hire some intown lateral 7th or 8th year associate and make them partner. I tell people to pick the firm that you want to be at until the time you go in house. Unless you lateral early on (in which case, there's no benefit to picking the NYC firm over Dallas since the pay difference is negligible), it is very, very difficult to lateral as a mid- or senior-level associate and make partner at your new firm. It is actually much easier to jump up a notch in "prestige" once you've proven to be a successful partner at your more regional firm.


This advice is credited and the contrary is a common misperception on this site. While perhaps in NYC it may be routine to lateral down the Vault/NLJ ladder and be made a non-equity partner right off the bat, it is super, super rare to do so in Texas and some other secondary markets where the "more prestigious" Vault firm has a relatively small footprint.


Thanks for the credit. And as someone in this thread already pointed out - Weil's group was started by a group from Jackson Walker. Furthermore, BB's transactional group is mostly ex-TK people, FJ's transactional group is mostly Winstead people, etc.

I really think it makes the most sense to go to the firm where you can really stand out and get the most attention - if you do that, your practice will develop and you can make partner and then your options (which include staying with the firm you're at) will be much better than if you are a burned out 4th year at a satellite office.

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Re: Texas Big 2 vs National V15 Firm in Dallas

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 11, 2012 5:12 pm

The last few posts seem to imply that those who go to Weil/Jones Day/GDC over the Texas-based firms get screwed over in terms of exit options. Does that generally seem to be the consensus? Is the effect pronounced enough that we should shy away from the satellite offices even if we liked them better in terms of culture/fit?

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Re: Texas Big 2 vs National V15 Firm in Dallas

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 11, 2012 5:24 pm

Anonymous User wrote:The last few posts seem to imply that those who go to Weil/Jones Day/GDC over the Texas-based firms get screwed over in terms of exit options. Does that generally seem to be the consensus? Is the effect pronounced enough that we should shy away from the satellite offices even if we liked them better in terms of culture/fit?


I definitely wouldn't say "screwed over." Especially when it comes to somewhere like JD that has an established Dallas presence. But I definitely think GDC associates (and Weil associates to a lesser extent) are at a bit of a disadvantage when it comes to exit ops as a mid-level associate - simply due to the fact that those are smaller offices and that a lower percentage of their clients are Dallas-based.




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