V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

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AnotherYearOlder
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby AnotherYearOlder » Wed Jan 02, 2013 9:36 pm

2014 wrote:How quickly do you get to "What questions can I answer for you?" when you are interviewing, and do you have examples of some good questions?

Additionally, once an interview moves into this phase, are you looking for the applicant to maintain a dialogue or is it irritating if they kind of impose their opinion rather than just asking engaging questions and listening to your response?


Depends on the interview. If the interview starts out poorly, I'm going to get to that question pretty quickly and try to run out the clock. If it's going well, I may never get there, or just ask right at the end to make sure I'm not leaving someone hanging when they really had a question that they wanted to ask.

Specific questions about the interviewers bio are always good -- you can always get people to talk about themselves.

Here's one that I would ask: What's your five year retention rate for associates? The answer to that question is going to tell you volumes about the firm you're looking at.

AnotherYearOlder
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby AnotherYearOlder » Wed Jan 02, 2013 9:39 pm

TTH wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:If I connect/network with a non exec committee partner at your firm can I that overcome my bottom of the class grades at a top 10 (i.e. Michigan, UVA, Penn).


With writing skills like this, I don't see why not.



When interviewing an otherwise qualified candidate, what are the things that most frequently set apart the candidate from the pack, for either better or worse?


(A) Being able to demonstrate that you're not a jackass.

(B) Hate to be too broad here, but just general, basic interpersonal skills are key. Make eye contact, be able to carry a conversation, represent that you're not a one-dimensional person who went to law school because you didn't have anything better to do (even if that's the case -- it's all in the sales pitch). You'd be surprised how many folks with great resumes we weed out because they can't get past eye contact and general conversation skills.

Anonymous User
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 02, 2013 10:22 pm

Do you interview lateral candidates? If so, what factors do you consider? How much do grades matter, say, as a midlevel?

Anonymous User
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jan 02, 2013 11:26 pm

Do you have general advice for a corporate NYC V5 junior looking to lateral back home to a secondary market (eg Atlanta) after a few years? Are there specific practice groups that I should join to maximize my chances? What type of experience should I look to get?

My goal is to lateral home and gun for partner at a place like A&B or K&S. Is that possible? Or do firms like that rely primarily on home-grown associates? If so, do you have general career advice about looking outside of firms, or maybe at mid-market places?

I realize that you're not making firm-specific comments, so any general advice would be great.

Myself
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Postby Myself » Thu Jan 03, 2013 12:02 am

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Last edited by Myself on Sun Nov 24, 2013 10:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

AnotherYearOlder
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby AnotherYearOlder » Thu Jan 03, 2013 10:36 am

Anonymous User wrote:Do you interview lateral candidates? If so, what factors do you consider? How much do grades matter, say, as a midlevel?


Sure, although mid-levels tend to have more interviews within a practice group than SA candidates, who are more spread out. When you're looking for a lateral hire, you're generally trying to fill a particular need and you're looking for someone who's already developed experience. So, if you're a litigator, as a midlevel associate, you ought to be able to do a decent amount of unsupervised work, demonstrate an ability to work a file, demonstrate an ability to make sound judgment calls, decent handle on motion practice, etc. On the transactional side, you've (hopefully) completed your stint in data room hell and can now take responsibility for compiling diligence issues, manage a closing, recognize the key pressure points on a transaction for purposes of negotiation and drafting, etc. In either case, you'd like to demonstrate an ability to write effectively and efficiently, be it briefs, contracts or whatever.

If you've got the experience a firm is looking for and can demonstrate that, grades are secondary. If you're trying to shoehorn yourself into a slot, grades are going to be more important, because you're going to want to tout something in addition to experience, which might only be tangentially related to the need.

AnotherYearOlder
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby AnotherYearOlder » Thu Jan 03, 2013 10:43 am

Anonymous User wrote:Do you have general advice for a corporate NYC V5 junior looking to lateral back home to a secondary market (eg Atlanta) after a few years? Are there specific practice groups that I should join to maximize my chances? What type of experience should I look to get?

My goal is to lateral home and gun for partner at a place like A&B or K&S. Is that possible? Or do firms like that rely primarily on home-grown associates? If so, do you have general career advice about looking outside of firms, or maybe at mid-market places?

I realize that you're not making firm-specific comments, so any general advice would be great.


I think demonstrating the skill sets that I mentioned in my previous post are key. Firms like A&B and K&S, while not in NYC, are still big firms in big markets and have very diverse and deep practices. They're going to have securities, M&A, structured finance, etc.. The key would be if you've been working on a lot of deals that have given you a specific industry expertise, you might highlight some of the firms in that market who are either established in that area or are trying to develop a practice.

When your targets are as big as yours, it's tough to give you practice group targets, because, for the most part, they're all there in each spot. I'd just pick something that you enjoy and that you've got an aptitude for, get as high on the deal team food chain as you can, and use that experience when you decide to move.

AnotherYearOlder
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby AnotherYearOlder » Thu Jan 03, 2013 10:54 am

ajax adonis wrote:
AnotherYearOlder wrote:Depends on the interview. If the interview starts out poorly, I'm going to get to that question pretty quickly and try to run out the clock. If it's going well, I may never get there, or just ask right at the end to make sure I'm not leaving someone hanging when they really had a question that they wanted to ask.


Along those lines, what are some signs that an interview is going poorly? or going well? Do you give any "tells" in this regard?


If the "what can I tell you about the firm" comes out in the first 7 minutes, you're in trouble (unless it's the first question, in which case that's just the interviewer's style). The "awkward pause" is another bad sign, because it means that the interviewer has run out of steam and you've run out of questions.

The best interviews, in my opinion, are those that didn't really feel like an interview. It means that you've established a rapport with the interviewer, which is key -- you're a person they're going to remember. If I've got specific questions about your resume, I'm going to ask them, so don't feel bad if the interview never gets to that point. Sometimes (especially for 1Ls), I'm going to look at a resume and see that you're qualified for the spot (most of the time, that's going to be a general decision, because you probably don't have industry-specific experience, you may have interned at a small firm in college, etc.,) but there's not going to be much to dissect. At that point, we're just going to start talking and I'm going to find out if you've got the interpersonal skills to succeed.

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bizzybone1313
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby bizzybone1313 » Thu Jan 03, 2013 10:56 am

I quit my job to study for the LSAT. How are hiring partners like you going to view such a decision? I thought about my decision to quit my consulting job night and day before pulling the trigger. I thought it was the right one. If I don't score well on LSAT and attend a good school, there are no Big Law interviews in the first place.

Anonymous User
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 03, 2013 10:57 am

thanks for answering these questions.

What are some of the reasons that a firm might allow a 3rd or 4th year associate to transfer to another office in the firm?

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dingbat
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby dingbat » Thu Jan 03, 2013 11:02 am

Do you think it's better to target a specific practice group at a firm, or to be a general candidate?
Does this advice change if the candidate has strong work experience in that area?

Thank you

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AllDangle
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby AllDangle » Thu Jan 03, 2013 11:10 am

I was a CJ major in college but am interested in transactional. How will my undergrad major be looked upon in interviews? How do you suggest I sell my interest in transactional practice while not having a finance focused background?

Thanks for taking the time to answer questions.

Anonymous User
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 03, 2013 11:45 am

I've tried this question in another topic, but it's difficult to answer "accurately", so I guess I'm kind of asking you to riff on general possibilities.

For comparison's sake, people at my school/class rank got SAs at V10s, DC, etc.; while I had trouble getting callbacks/offers from NLJ 250 firms. I'm not the best interviewer, but not painfully awkward or anything like that. What other factors could have played a role for someone in my position not doing well at OCI? What could I do to overcome them if I end up looking again after the summer?

Other factors - blue collar background, mediocre undergrad.

zomginternets
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby zomginternets » Thu Jan 03, 2013 12:51 pm

AnotherYearOlder wrote:
ajax adonis wrote:
AnotherYearOlder wrote:Depends on the interview. If the interview starts out poorly, I'm going to get to that question pretty quickly and try to run out the clock. If it's going well, I may never get there, or just ask right at the end to make sure I'm not leaving someone hanging when they really had a question that they wanted to ask.


Along those lines, what are some signs that an interview is going poorly? or going well? Do you give any "tells" in this regard?


If the "what can I tell you about the firm" comes out in the first 7 minutes, you're in trouble (unless it's the first question, in which case that's just the interviewer's style). The "awkward pause" is another bad sign, because it means that the interviewer has run out of steam and you've run out of questions.

The best interviews, in my opinion, are those that didn't really feel like an interview. It means that you've established a rapport with the interviewer, which is key -- you're a person they're going to remember. If I've got specific questions about your resume, I'm going to ask them, so don't feel bad if the interview never gets to that point. Sometimes (especially for 1Ls), I'm going to look at a resume and see that you're qualified for the spot (most of the time, that's going to be a general decision, because you probably don't have industry-specific experience, you may have interned at a small firm in college, etc.,) but there's not going to be much to dissect. At that point, we're just going to start talking and I'm going to find out if you've got the interpersonal skills to succeed.


A related question - is it bad when the interviewer ends up doing most of the talking? I worry that the less I talk, the less the interviewer is going to remember me.

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20160810
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby 20160810 » Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:08 pm

bizzybone1313 wrote:I quit my job to study for the LSAT. How are hiring partners like you going to view such a decision? I thought about my decision to quit my consulting job night and day before pulling the trigger. I thought it was the right one. If I don't score well on LSAT and attend a good school, there are no Big Law interviews in the first place.

The legal employment forum is not for 0L questions.

Anonymous User
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:44 pm

How do you view military veterans for hiring? How about former JAG members?

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AreJay711
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby AreJay711 » Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:46 pm

2L here. What kinds of things (under my control) can I do to avoid not getting hired at the end of the summer?

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IAFG
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby IAFG » Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:58 pm

AnotherYearOlder wrote:
Now, it's the notion that mass mailing resumes to everyone in the world is somehow useful. If you qualify for OCI, great, apply at every opportunity. If you're sending cold resumes, pick a handful, research the firm, make a few calls and get your foot in the door that way.

From your perspective, it should feel like we did this. You don't want to feel like you just got "spammed," and if it does feel that way, we probably weren't careful enough. From our perspective, betting on only a handful of firms isn't enough, and larger volume is necessary in this tight economy.

That advice became prevalent in part because of the many, many TLSers who got jobs that way.

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TatNurner
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby TatNurner » Thu Jan 03, 2013 2:17 pm

Thanks again for sharing your experience with us.

I'm curious how far along in your career you were when you found out you had a shot at partner? Did you have to start doing some things differently to cement your position (e.g. billing more, politicking more)? Finally, how have your billables per year changed over the years? Do you bill less now that you are a partner?

Anonymous User
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 03, 2013 2:55 pm

Thanks very much for doing this.

What advice would you give to a 2L in regard to preparing for his or her SA? What, in your opinion, makes a really successful SA as opposed to one that you're hesitant to extend an offer to? Any do's/dont's that stand out to you?

Thanks!

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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 03, 2013 8:18 pm

Thank you. Similar question to one a few posts up:

How'd you become hiring partner? Does that add non-billable work on top of a billable requirement that's already pretty burdensome, or does it allow you to bill less and do something you enjoy?

AnotherYearOlder
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby AnotherYearOlder » Thu Jan 03, 2013 9:13 pm

Anonymous User wrote:thanks for answering these questions.

What are some of the reasons that a firm might allow a 3rd or 4th year associate to transfer to another office in the firm?


Need for your expertise in that office, spouse getting relocated, etc.. Could be any number of reasons and I've seen people transfer offices quite a bit. I've also seen people tele-commute from cities where the firm doesn't have a presence. I think if you're a good lawyer, the firm will accommodate a move.

AnotherYearOlder
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby AnotherYearOlder » Thu Jan 03, 2013 9:20 pm

dingbat wrote:Do you think it's better to target a specific practice group at a firm, or to be a general candidate?
Does this advice change if the candidate has strong work experience in that area?

Thank you


As a summer associate candidate? I think it's okay to be general (especially as a 1L), but i think narrowing your focus a little, even if it's only "litigation" or "transactional", makes you a better candidate. If you've got strong work experience in an area, all the better. In fact, if you deviate from prior work experience, that might raise some eyebrows.

I think a lot of CSOs give bad advice when they tell you not to commit to a particular area of interest, otherwise you might hurt your chances. I've seen many evaluations that say "Solid candidate, but not focused. No idea what he wants to do." I've also seen instances where we chose one candidate over another (equally qualified) candidate because we knew what one wanted to do and couldn't tell about the other one.

AnotherYearOlder
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby AnotherYearOlder » Thu Jan 03, 2013 9:22 pm

AllDangle wrote:I was a CJ major in college but am interested in transactional. How will my undergrad major be looked upon in interviews? How do you suggest I sell my interest in transactional practice while not having a finance focused background?

Thanks for taking the time to answer questions.


I think you ought to be able to adequately explain why your focus is on transactional work. Tell a good story as to why that's going to be your career path and sell it. I'm a transacitonal lawyer with a Political Science background, so it's not like you're disqualified. It just means that you'll have to overcome an assumption. If you do it well, it might even give you a leg up.

AnotherYearOlder
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Re: V100 Hiring Partner Taking Questions

Postby AnotherYearOlder » Thu Jan 03, 2013 9:26 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I've tried this question in another topic, but it's difficult to answer "accurately", so I guess I'm kind of asking you to riff on general possibilities.

For comparison's sake, people at my school/class rank got SAs at V10s, DC, etc.; while I had trouble getting callbacks/offers from NLJ 250 firms. I'm not the best interviewer, but not painfully awkward or anything like that. What other factors could have played a role for someone in my position not doing well at OCI? What could I do to overcome them if I end up looking again after the summer?

Other factors - blue collar background, mediocre undergrad.


I don't mean to shrug off the question, but it's a pretty tough one to answer without having met you. If I had to guess, and this is only a guess, I'll bet that you're coming across as unfocused. In other words, by your admission, you're not a great interviewer, so that makes me think that you're having a tough time engaging people. With that "against" you, you're also having trouble telling a story about why you want to work for that particular firm or why you want to work in a particular area of law. You're probably not doing poorly in the interviews, but you're also not overcoming a "meh" reaction.

I'd practice your interview skills. Do some mock interviews with CSO or faculty. Polish your story. It appears that you have had some pretty strong academic success, you just need to work on how you get that across. Good luck!




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