Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

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Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Poll ended at Sun Jan 06, 2013 11:25 pm

K&E/Weil/Skadden Restructuring
8
50%
non-Wachtell V10 M&A
8
50%
 
Total votes: 16

aca0260
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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby aca0260 » Sun Sep 30, 2012 1:52 pm

Are you happy with the decision to do JD/MBA? Was it hard to convince banks you wanted to do finance?

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Borg
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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Borg » Sun Sep 30, 2012 2:24 pm

aca0260 wrote:Are you happy with the decision to do JD/MBA? Was it hard to convince banks you wanted to do finance?


Yes I am very happy, this was the best choice I've made in my entire life. No, it is not hard to convince banks you want to do finance or law firms you want to practice law. You just emphasize different things in interviews. Whoever started this stupid internet rumor that one or the other would view it with suspicion rather than as a very useful combination for both should be shot, because it's not at all true and has probably turned a ton of people who would have benefited like I have away from enrolling. If you can get into the JD/MBA program at Harvard, Stanford, Columbia, Chicago, NYU, Penn, Northwestern, or Berkeley, my opinion is that you should unquestionably do it.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby KidStuddi » Tue Oct 02, 2012 3:28 pm

Borg wrote:Yes I am very happy, this was the best choice I've made in my entire life. No, it is not hard to convince banks you want to do finance or law firms you want to practice law. You just emphasize different things in interviews. Whoever started this stupid internet rumor that one or the other would view it with suspicion rather than as a very useful combination for both should be shot, because it's not at all true and has probably turned a ton of people who would have benefited like I have away from enrolling. If you can get into the JD/MBA program at Harvard, Stanford, Columbia, Chicago, NYU, Penn, Northwestern, or Berkeley, my opinion is that you should unquestionably do it.


I've never heard that employers will view it with "suspicion." (Why would they care? It's not like you're going to be moonlighting as a banker while you're a BigLaw associate or vice versa). The criticism I've always heard is that you will not see a return on the investment. Do you expect to earn more than MBA only co-workers? Even if you will, how many years will it take to make up for the extra 2 years you spent in school and the extra ~100k in tuition (assuming sticker at any of those schools you listed)? And that's not even considering the two years of lost earning potential or interest compounding. It might be a useful hedge against unemployment, but to say that everyone with the qualifications should do it without question is pretty ridiculous.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Borg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 7:53 pm

KidStuddi wrote:
Borg wrote:Yes I am very happy, this was the best choice I've made in my entire life. No, it is not hard to convince banks you want to do finance or law firms you want to practice law. You just emphasize different things in interviews. Whoever started this stupid internet rumor that one or the other would view it with suspicion rather than as a very useful combination for both should be shot, because it's not at all true and has probably turned a ton of people who would have benefited like I have away from enrolling. If you can get into the JD/MBA program at Harvard, Stanford, Columbia, Chicago, NYU, Penn, Northwestern, or Berkeley, my opinion is that you should unquestionably do it.


I've never heard that employers will view it with "suspicion." (Why would they care? It's not like you're going to be moonlighting as a banker while you're a BigLaw associate or vice versa). The criticism I've always heard is that you will not see a return on the investment. Do you expect to earn more than MBA only co-workers? Even if you will, how many years will it take to make up for the extra 2 years you spent in school and the extra ~100k in tuition (assuming sticker at any of those schools you listed)? And that's not even considering the two years of lost earning potential or interest compounding. It might be a useful hedge against unemployment, but to say that everyone with the qualifications should do it without question is pretty ridiculous.


A) It's a persistent rumor, search the forum and you'll find tons of posts in which people who don't know what they are talking about say that law firms perceive JD/MBAs as a "flight risk."

B) It's one extra year or in some cases no extra years compared to law students (3 year programs at Penn, Northwestern, and Columbia I believe). Yes, it takes two years longer than the MBA, and I concede that the tuition is more for two degrees than one.

C) Yes, I do believe that JD/MBAs earn more over their careers than the vast majority of their non-dual degree peers. Obviously it isn't always a JD/MBA who is the highest earning member of a business or law school's graduating class, but I've seen statistics for my school and the dual degree people do outearn the vast majority of both classes.

I think the reason for this is partially the "hedge" that you alluded to. It is a powerful advantage to be able to stick out a tough economy in a relatively stable law firm rather than a financial institution, and then make a jump when things are good again. If you're just an MBA and your fund tanks or whatever (bearing in mind that the only MBAs who make the same kind of money as lawyers are in finance/consulting, and a sizable portion of MBA grads do neither), it can be extremely difficult to find a new job with a similar salary. You might have to go do corporate finance at a company instead. Lawyers, on the other hand, tend to be able to get at least 4-5 years out of biglaw before being pushed out, and that usually isn't an abrupt process so they have time to find something else. JD/MBAs in law firms can keep in touch with their friends from both schools, and have a better chance to leave a stable, high salary for a high salary in finance when the right opportunity arises rather than having to scramble from unemployment.

On the law side, the MBA provides a network of people to contact that you otherwise would not have. Most lawyers at good firms basically only have the option of continuing to be lawyers if they don't have any previous work experience. They go in-house usually when they leave firms, and there's a pretty firm ceiling on those salaries. They generally don't have the same networks and options as dual degree students. The average grad of HYSCCN probably makes about $200k/year over the course of a lifetime.

Also, in general the employment opportunities I've had are incredible. I get unsolicited emails from investment management firms asking me to interview when they are on campus. I get invited to coffee with JD/MBA alumni. I catch bulge bracket recruiters looking at my Linkedin profile all the time. I have been totally amazed at all of the opportunities that have been available, and I think it's because people are intrigued by the joint degree.

D) Even if you don't earn the very highest salary of anyone, it still is worth it if it helps you to do something that you really enjoy that you would not otherwise be able to do. Maybe you become a happy, moderately successful real estate developer making $200k instead of an unhappy lawyer making $200k. To me, that is worth $100k over the course of a lifetime. I care very much about not hating my life when I wake up each morning.

I don't intend to brag with this post. I don't know who anyone on here is, and I don't have anything to gain by impressing a bunch of anonymous avatars on the internet. I'm just trying to let people know how happy I am that I had the opportunity to do this, and to encourage people to pursue it if they are thinking about it and aren't totally happy in law. I agree with you that the additional opportunity cost and the tuition cost make it more risky, and it should be taken into account. However, in my case I have found it to be totally worth it and I think many others probably would as well. If anyone is interested in learning more, feel free to PM.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby 09042014 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:06 pm

Is that MBA really worth anything anymore if you spend 5 years in a law firm?

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Borg
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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Borg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:09 pm

Desert Fox wrote:Is that MBA really worth anything anymore if you spend 5 years in a law firm?


Why wouldn't it be? You still have all the financial knowledge you gained in the program, and hopefully you will be very social while in school and keep in touch with people from your class after graduation so you can call them up if you decide you want to jump. I admit it's worth less if you're not outgoing, but I don't think that's a problem for most.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby 09042014 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:17 pm

Borg wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:Is that MBA really worth anything anymore if you spend 5 years in a law firm?


Why wouldn't it be? You still have all the financial knowledge you gained in the program, and hopefully you will be very social while in school and keep in touch with people from your class after graduation so you can call them up if you decide you want to jump. I admit it's worth less if you're not outgoing, but I don't think that's a problem for most.


Because you went into the legal industry and only got legal experience. You won't have any recent relevant experience in either finance or management. You'd have entry level experience. Nobody hire MBAs for what they know.

The networking aspect is solid, but networking won't help with jobs you just aren't qualified for. I'd believe it might help building a book of legal business, maybe.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:20 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
Borg wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:Is that MBA really worth anything anymore if you spend 5 years in a law firm?


Why wouldn't it be? You still have all the financial knowledge you gained in the program, and hopefully you will be very social while in school and keep in touch with people from your class after graduation so you can call them up if you decide you want to jump. I admit it's worth less if you're not outgoing, but I don't think that's a problem for most.


Because you went into the legal industry and only got legal experience. You won't have any recent relevant experience in either finance or management. You'd have entry level experience. Nobody hire MBAs for what they know.

The networking aspect is solid, but networking won't help with jobs you just aren't qualified for. I'd believe it might help building a book of legal business, maybe.


Head start with respect to understanding business issues in a deal. Essential to being an excellent deal lawyer and potentially opening clients' eyes toward opening non-compliance roles within their corporation/PE fund/VC fund/hedge fund. As a corporate lawyer, I regret not doing an MBA and I am looking for any way to sneak in some training while doing my full time job.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:21 pm

Desert Fox wrote:Is that MBA really worth anything anymore if you spend 5 years in a law firm?


Without question, yes. The better you understand the business issues, they better you can take ownership of a deal early on, greatly enhancing partnership prospects and potentially going business-side with a client, if that's your goal.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby 09042014 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:22 pm

I've taken like 3 Kellogg classes. They aren't that great.

Value of an MBA is signaling and networking. Not the knowledge gained.

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Borg
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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Borg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:23 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
Borg wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:Is that MBA really worth anything anymore if you spend 5 years in a law firm?


Why wouldn't it be? You still have all the financial knowledge you gained in the program, and hopefully you will be very social while in school and keep in touch with people from your class after graduation so you can call them up if you decide you want to jump. I admit it's worth less if you're not outgoing, but I don't think that's a problem for most.


Because you went into the legal industry and only got legal experience. You won't have any recent relevant experience in either finance or management. You'd have entry level experience. Nobody hire MBAs for what they know.

The networking aspect is solid, but networking won't help with jobs you just aren't qualified for. I'd believe it might help building a book of legal business, maybe.


I think you're partially right. A lot of what I say is based on the assumption that you have some high quality work experience beforehand, that you stay active in things outside of law, and that you really take advantage of all the opportunities that come your way during school. I agree that if you don't do these things, it's going to be harder to change course as you go further down the legal road. However, it will still be easier than it would be without the MBA. Also, Fresh Prince makes some solid points - even as a summer I had a much better grip on what was going on thanks to the dual degree.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:26 pm

I don't think anyone here is saying they getting MBA will make you Marty Lipton. An MBA, IMO, gives a pretty significant head start for transactional lawyers, though. And while three classes at Kellogg might give you authority to say just how useful an MBA is (it doesn't, but lets assume it does), I'm pretty sure you haven't done a single deal and understood that there's a business side to it they a lot of lawyers (including myself) simply don't comprehend.
Last edited by Old Gregg on Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Borg
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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Borg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:27 pm

Desert Fox wrote:I've taken like 3 Kellogg classes. They aren't that great.

Value of an MBA is signaling and networking. Not the knowledge gained.


Not true. If you don't know how to break down financial statements, do a discounted cash flow, or project financials you can learn to do these things in an MBA program. No law firm or law school will teach you to do that in detail.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:29 pm

Borg wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:I've taken like 3 Kellogg classes. They aren't that great.

Value of an MBA is signaling and networking. Not the knowledge gained.


Not true. If you don't know how to break down financial statements, do a discounted cash flow, or project financials you can learn to do these things in an MBA program. No law firm or law school will teach you to do that in detail.


Exactly.

That said, one way to partially bridge the gap is to take accounting for lawyers or something along those lines.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby 09042014 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:35 pm

I guess I'm overestimating how much law schools allow you to take b school classes if you. At Nwestern it's really easy. I'm in a project finance class right now.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:37 pm

That's helpful if you want to do project finance. I think the most useful thing for M&A, PE, etc. is learning how to number crunch, do models, etc.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby 09042014 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:44 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:That's helpful if you want to do project finance. I think the most useful thing for M&A, PE, etc. is learning how to number crunch, do models, etc.


Nah, I'm just taking it for the easy A.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Borg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:48 pm

I can do a ton of stuff now that I couldn't do prior to business school. If you're not into it that's fine, but I am about 10,000x better at all things finance and business related now than I was when I walked in the door.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:56 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:
Borg wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:I've taken like 3 Kellogg classes. They aren't that great.

Value of an MBA is signaling and networking. Not the knowledge gained.


Not true. If you don't know how to break down financial statements, do a discounted cash flow, or project financials you can learn to do these things in an MBA program. No law firm or law school will teach you to do that in detail.


Exactly.

That said, one way to partially bridge the gap is to take accounting for lawyers or something along those lines.


Chiming in as someone with a business background who flirted with the idea of a top JD/MBA and decided it wasn't worth the extra money... all those things you just described you can pick up in a 4-6 week financial analyst training course. In addition, at top JD/MBA schools a lot of the business employers either invite the general law student population to interview or send an invite to the Law and Business association and has them forward it to their members. In general, if you are a decent student w/ a decent resume at a top JD/MBA school you have a good shot at a business job if you want to put in the work. (a number of people at my school did it)

If you are a superstar and want to jump to a fund/bank after 2 or 3 years at a firm it definitely will help for that.. but barring that specific situation I am not entirely convinced of the payoff.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby 09042014 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 8:57 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:
Borg wrote:
Not true. If you don't know how to break down financial statements, do a discounted cash flow, or project financials you can learn to do these things in an MBA program. No law firm or law school will teach you to do that in detail.


Exactly.

That said, one way to partially bridge the gap is to take accounting for lawyers or something along those lines.


Chiming in as someone with a business background who flirted with the idea of a top JD/MBA and decided it wasn't worth the extra money... all those things you just described you can pick up in a 4-6 week financial analyst training course. In addition, at top JD/MBA schools a lot of the business employers either invite the general law student population to interview or send an invite to the Law and Business association and has them forward it to their members. In general, if you are a decent student w/ a decent resume at a top JD/MBA school you have a good shot at a business job if you want to put in the work. (a number of people at my school did it)

If you are a superstar and want to jump to a fund/bank after 2 or 3 years at a firm it definitely will help for that.. but barring that specific situation I am not entirely convinced of the payoff.


But FP is a 1st year who didn't do an MBA, clearly he cannot be wrong

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Old Gregg
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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:00 pm

If you are a superstar and want to jump to a fund/bank after 2 or 3 years at a firm it definitely will help for that


I guess desert fox forgot to read this point, which was one of my main points above.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:02 pm

all those things you just described you can pick up in a 4-6 week financial analyst training course.


This isn't really refuting my point. I said that an understanding of business issues is essential, not an MBA.

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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby Old Gregg » Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:04 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:
Borg wrote:
Not true. If you don't know how to break down financial statements, do a discounted cash flow, or project financials you can learn to do these things in an MBA program. No law firm or law school will teach you to do that in detail.


Exactly.

That said, one way to partially bridge the gap is to take accounting for lawyers or something along those lines.


Chiming in as someone with a business background who flirted with the idea of a top JD/MBA and decided it wasn't worth the extra money... all those things you just described you can pick up in a 4-6 week financial analyst training course. In addition, at top JD/MBA schools a lot of the business employers either invite the general law student population to interview or send an invite to the Law and Business association and has them forward it to their members. In general, if you are a decent student w/ a decent resume at a top JD/MBA school you have a good shot at a business job if you want to put in the work. (a number of people at my school did it)

If you are a superstar and want to jump to a fund/bank after 2 or 3 years at a firm it definitely will help for that.. but barring that specific situation I am not entirely convinced of the payoff.


But FP is a 1st year who didn't do an MBA, clearly he cannot be wrong


My bad. I'll just try to network at HBS and get a gig at Blackstone. No work whatsoever!

09042014
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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby 09042014 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:04 pm

I'm not sure why any JD/MBAs even do law. I always ask them why they are ruining their perfectly good MBA with a TTT JD. They don't like that question.

09042014
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Re: Best V10 practice areas/groups for shot at FINANCE exit ops?

Postby 09042014 » Tue Oct 02, 2012 9:05 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:
Desert Fox wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:
Exactly.

That said, one way to partially bridge the gap is to take accounting for lawyers or something along those lines.


Chiming in as someone with a business background who flirted with the idea of a top JD/MBA and decided it wasn't worth the extra money... all those things you just described you can pick up in a 4-6 week financial analyst training course. In addition, at top JD/MBA schools a lot of the business employers either invite the general law student population to interview or send an invite to the Law and Business association and has them forward it to their members. In general, if you are a decent student w/ a decent resume at a top JD/MBA school you have a good shot at a business job if you want to put in the work. (a number of people at my school did it)

If you are a superstar and want to jump to a fund/bank after 2 or 3 years at a firm it definitely will help for that.. but barring that specific situation I am not entirely convinced of the payoff.


But FP is a 1st year who didn't do an MBA, clearly he cannot be wrong


My bad. I'll just try to network at HBS and get a gig at Blackstone. No work whatsoever!


Have my XO bros led me me astray!?!




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