08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

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reasonable_man
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby reasonable_man » Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:10 pm

Mick Haller wrote:Thanks R_M for taking questions. I am a long time fan of yours.

How does your firm do its hiring? OCI only? What advice do you have for people who graduate unemployed to get jobs at small firms like yours? If your response is "networking," can you give some specifics from your own experience as to effective networking techniques?

Thanks again



Hey man, thank you.

We do not participate in OCI. When they brought me in, I came in as a lateral two years out of law school. The firm had advertised in only one plave (reputible legal journal) and that's where I saw the ad. I had a leg-up when I came in because I came from a firm that the partners were familiar with and knew to be a solid mis-sized outfit, so I sort of had a nod of credibility there.

We have hired since I came on and that person was a law student that eventually became an attorney here. We hired him/her as a 1L for part-time work and that person eventually got offered a full time job. We have had one or two other that came in during that time and no offer was extended for a full-time gig because frankly they were not that good at their jobs. They were let go wayyyy before graduation though so it’s not like they were dragged along thinking there was a job at the end of the tunnel.

My first bit of advice is to work during the school year at small firms if you can. If you become a true asset to the firm, you’re likely to get hired. It’s much easier for a small firm to take the leap and hire someone if they have had a lengthy test-drive period.

You have to be vigilant and always looking for small firm opportunities in various journals, etc. If the firm says they are looking for 1 to 3 years’ experience and you are just coming out of LS; apply anyway. If they want 2 to 5 years, you probably have no shot.

Get real experience early on; even before LS if you can. The more you have on your resume, the better your chances of landing a small firm job. I had a freakin ton of experience dating back to like 2003 and I was a 2008 graduate. This helped. It also helps to have prior employers that loved you and will sing your praises when someone calls for a recommendation (my current bosses told me this helped me out a lot). I sent the ex-boss a huge Christmas basket that year after I got that recommendation.

Be ok with lower pay at first. If it is a legit firm and you’re a rock star, the cash will be there. My salary has increased steadily every year and I’ve always gotten a really nice bonus.

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Mad Hatter
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby Mad Hatter » Mon Jan 14, 2013 6:56 pm

Is it pronounced BOO-teek or BO-teek?

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Ruxin1
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby Ruxin1 » Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:11 pm

Mad Hatter wrote:Is it pronounced BOO-teek or BO-teek?


Get fucked. RM is giving up his time to answer questions and TLS is lacking in that department

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reasonable_man
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby reasonable_man » Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:44 pm

Mad Hatter wrote:Is it pronounced BOO-teek or BO-teek?


I am not a fan of the term - I honestly think it’s silly. But it has a meaning on boards like this (not so much in the real world). My firm is one of the best around in a small specialty that very few practice and thus we are not the run of the mill litigation outfit. It’s also not an awful place to work. That seems to be the commonly accepted definition of a "Boo-teek" on TLS.

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ExBiglawAssociate
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:46 pm

Are you bitter that guys like me, who are probably no smarter than you, got biglaw because we had the resources and advice to study for the LSAT hard enough and long enough to get into a better law school?

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Mick Haller
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby Mick Haller » Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:55 pm

Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:Are you bitter that guys like me, who are probably no smarter than you, got biglaw because we had the resources and advice to study for the LSAT hard enough and long enough to get into a better law school?


wow...

I thought you were a semi-credible poster?

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ExBiglawAssociate
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:57 pm

Mick Haller wrote:
Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:Are you bitter that guys like me, who are probably no smarter than you, got biglaw because we had the resources and advice to study for the LSAT hard enough and long enough to get into a better law school?


wow...

I thought you were a semi-credible poster?


Not really sure why you would think this.

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reasonable_man
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby reasonable_man » Mon Jan 14, 2013 7:58 pm

Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:Are you bitter that guys like me, who are probably no smarter than you, got biglaw because we had the resources and advice to study for the LSAT hard enough and long enough to get into a better law school?


Yes. It keeps me up at night, brah.

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ExBiglawAssociate
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Mon Jan 14, 2013 8:02 pm

reasonable_man wrote:
Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:Are you bitter that guys like me, who are probably no smarter than you, got biglaw because we had the resources and advice to study for the LSAT hard enough and long enough to get into a better law school?


Yes. It keeps me up at night, brah.


Just messing with you, man. You are definitely a top poster on this site.

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reasonable_man
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby reasonable_man » Mon Jan 14, 2013 8:25 pm

Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:
Biglaw_Associate_V20 wrote:Are you bitter that guys like me, who are probably no smarter than you, got biglaw because we had the resources and advice to study for the LSAT hard enough and long enough to get into a better law school?


Yes. It keeps me up at night, brah.


Just messing with you, man. You are definitely a top poster on this site.



Its all good. If you read up a bit, I already admitted that it stings when my LS/GPA have been held against me. I lost out on a serious job offer that I otherwise had in the bag (partner and associate both pulling for me - had prior experieince working with me and wanted me to fill a void of actual court room/appellate experieince). I didn't get the job because of my failure to study for the LSAT sufficiently. That does suck, believe me. On the other hand, I have reported decisions in my name at the trial and appellate level, which I never would have at a biglaw firm. So I guess you take the good with the bad.

synergy
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby synergy » Mon Jan 14, 2013 8:38 pm

Where/how did you find your new job? Was it online or through a headhunter? Also, if you don't mind, how much did you start at salary-wise at your first firm right out of law school?

Thanks!

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nygrrrl
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby nygrrrl » Mon Jan 14, 2013 8:46 pm

reasonable_man wrote:Its all good. If you read up a bit, I already admitted that it stings when my LS/GPA have been held against me. I lost out on a serious job offer that I otherwise had in the bag (partner and associate both pulling for me - had prior experieince working with me and wanted me to fill a void of actual court room/appellate experieince). I didn't get the job because of my failure to study for the LSAT sufficiently. That does suck, believe me. On the other hand, I have reported decisions in my name at the trial and appellate level, which I never would have at a biglaw firm. So I guess you take the good with the bad.

And you know... there's something incredibly cool about how much you have given back to all of the posters here (and probably other people in your LS life.) I think you get back what you give out and I suspect that you will be one of the Happy, Fulfilled, Successful ones among us. You sure as hell deserve it.

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reasonable_man
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby reasonable_man » Mon Jan 14, 2013 9:09 pm

synergy wrote:Where/how did you find your new job? Was it online or through a headhunter? Also, if you don't mind, how much did you start at salary-wise at your first firm right out of law school?

Thanks!


Right out of school my salary was low. It was 2008 and the market tanked so jobs were few and far between. My offer prior to graduation was an offer of employment with no salary attached. I Started at 50K. That increased to 70K in about 6 months. Current salary is just over 100K. So it's gone up about 50k+ from 2008 to 2012.

My new job I found in an old fashioned print law journal. I was contacted by a headhunter just before I found the job and worked with him a bit - he sent me on one or two interviews at firms I wasn't interested in joining. It was a great experieince though and he's a great guy. I have other friends who are headhunters. Some are great, some are so-so. They will only work with you if you have at least a year (really closer to 2 years or more experieince though and once you hit 7 years they don't really want to know you either - with some exceptions I guess).

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reasonable_man
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby reasonable_man » Tue Jan 15, 2013 1:17 am

nygrrrl wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:Its all good. If you read up a bit, I already admitted that it stings when my LS/GPA have been held against me. I lost out on a serious job offer that I otherwise had in the bag (partner and associate both pulling for me - had prior experieince working with me and wanted me to fill a void of actual court room/appellate experieince). I didn't get the job because of my failure to study for the LSAT sufficiently. That does suck, believe me. On the other hand, I have reported decisions in my name at the trial and appellate level, which I never would have at a biglaw firm. So I guess you take the good with the bad.

And you know... there's something incredibly cool about how much you have given back to all of the posters here (and probably other people in your LS life.) I think you get back what you give out and I suspect that you will be one of the Happy, Fulfilled, Successful ones among us. You sure as hell deserve it.



Thank you; very nice of you to say. Honestly, I'm very content. I have a pretty great job. I call my own shots and have a pretty high overall quality of life. The law can be a great profession if you find a firm that is a good fit. I wish that for everyone that genuinely wants to practice. I'm a bit of a jerk on here sometimes because a lot of people want to short circuit the path to getting to the point of career satisfaction. Their are two routes honestly (at least in private practice). 1) Get top grades at a very top school and pray for biglaw; 2) work your ass off to the tune of 18 hour+ days in LS to get good grades and lots and lots of work experience - so that you are a highly competent, non-dispensable component of your firm from the beginning. Both 1 and 2 require a ton of work and most people don't have it in them. But for those that do, the law isn't a half bad profession.

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Br3v
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby Br3v » Tue Jan 15, 2013 1:27 am

reasonable_man wrote:
nygrrrl wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:Its all good. If you read up a bit, I already admitted that it stings when my LS/GPA have been held against me. I lost out on a serious job offer that I otherwise had in the bag (partner and associate both pulling for me - had prior experieince working with me and wanted me to fill a void of actual court room/appellate experieince). I didn't get the job because of my failure to study for the LSAT sufficiently. That does suck, believe me. On the other hand, I have reported decisions in my name at the trial and appellate level, which I never would have at a biglaw firm. So I guess you take the good with the bad.

And you know... there's something incredibly cool about how much you have given back to all of the posters here (and probably other people in your LS life.) I think you get back what you give out and I suspect that you will be one of the Happy, Fulfilled, Successful ones among us. You sure as hell deserve it.



Thank you; very nice of you to say. Honestly, I'm very content. I have a pretty great job. I call my own shots and have a pretty high overall quality of life. The law can be a great profession if you find a firm that is a good fit. I wish that for everyone that genuinely wants to practice. I'm a bit of a jerk on here sometimes because a lot of people want to short circuit the path to getting to the point of career satisfaction. Their are two routes honestly (at least in private practice). 1) Get top grades at a very top school and pray for biglaw; 2) work your ass off to the tune of 18 hour+ days in LS to get good grades and lots and lots of work experience - so that you are a highly competent, non-dispensable component of your firm from the beginning. Both 1 and 2 require a ton of work and most people don't have it in them. But for those that do, the law isn't a half bad profession.


Sorry if this is a stupid question, but in regards to path 2, do you mean working at a firm during the school year while taking classes? I'm an OL and have no idea how common that is.

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reasonable_man
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby reasonable_man » Tue Jan 15, 2013 1:51 am

Br3v wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:
nygrrrl wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:Its all good. If you read up a bit, I already admitted that it stings when my LS/GPA have been held against me. I lost out on a serious job offer that I otherwise had in the bag (partner and associate both pulling for me - had prior experieince working with me and wanted me to fill a void of actual court room/appellate experieince). I didn't get the job because of my failure to study for the LSAT sufficiently. That does suck, believe me. On the other hand, I have reported decisions in my name at the trial and appellate level, which I never would have at a biglaw firm. So I guess you take the good with the bad.

And you know... there's something incredibly cool about how much you have given back to all of the posters here (and probably other people in your LS life.) I think you get back what you give out and I suspect that you will be one of the Happy, Fulfilled, Successful ones among us. You sure as hell deserve it.



Thank you; very nice of you to say. Honestly, I'm very content. I have a pretty great job. I call my own shots and have a pretty high overall quality of life. The law can be a great profession if you find a firm that is a good fit. I wish that for everyone that genuinely wants to practice. I'm a bit of a jerk on here sometimes because a lot of people want to short circuit the path to getting to the point of career satisfaction. Their are two routes honestly (at least in private practice). 1) Get top grades at a very top school and pray for biglaw; 2) work your ass off to the tune of 18 hour+ days in LS to get good grades and lots and lots of work experience - so that you are a highly competent, non-dispensable component of your firm from the beginning. Both 1 and 2 require a ton of work and most people don't have it in them. But for those that do, the law isn't a half bad profession.


Sorry if this is a stupid question, but in regards to path 2, do you mean working at a firm during the school year while taking classes? I'm an OL and have no idea how common that is.


It was not common when I went to LS 05' to 08' but its the single best way to work your way into a firm. Grades are very important. But if you're not going to be in the top 10% (90% of the class is not going to be in the top 10%), then you need serious work experience to counter your less than top-grades. I recommend working during the school session (just not first semester).

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Postby Myself » Wed Jan 16, 2013 3:43 am

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reasonable_man
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby reasonable_man » Wed Jan 16, 2013 12:02 pm

ajax adonis wrote:Would you ever want to transition to the public sector? What're lateral potentials like for people who work a small boutique like yours? Vice versa (i.e., from govt to firm)?



If I were to go to the public sector, I would want to be in an investigative role (like FBI or NYPD Intel) or an ADA. The problem with that is that the money is terrible and I just cannot see myself taking that kind of a hit. I also doubt that I would be a particularly attractice candidate for an ADA job at this point (not super easy to lateral from a mostly civil practice). I just don't see the opportunities in that world ever developing and at this point I am inclined to stay the course where I am at and shoot for partnership.

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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby Ruxin1 » Wed Jan 16, 2013 12:15 pm

reasonable_man wrote:
ajax adonis wrote:Would you ever want to transition to the public sector? What're lateral potentials like for people who work a small boutique like yours? Vice versa (i.e., from govt to firm)?



If I were to go to the public sector, I would want to be in an investigative role (like FBI or NYPD Intel) or an ADA. The problem with that is that the money is terrible and I just cannot see myself taking that kind of a hit. I also doubt that I would be a particularly attractice candidate for an ADA job at this point (not super easy to lateral from a mostly civil practice). I just don't see the opportunities in that world ever developing and at this point I am inclined to stay the course where I am at and shoot for partnership.


What do you think the partners are making (generally) at your firm?

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reasonable_man
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby reasonable_man » Wed Jan 16, 2013 4:15 pm

Ruxin1 wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:
ajax adonis wrote:Would you ever want to transition to the public sector? What're lateral potentials like for people who work a small boutique like yours? Vice versa (i.e., from govt to firm)?



If I were to go to the public sector, I would want to be in an investigative role (like FBI or NYPD Intel) or an ADA. The problem with that is that the money is terrible and I just cannot see myself taking that kind of a hit. I also doubt that I would be a particularly attractice candidate for an ADA job at this point (not super easy to lateral from a mostly civil practice). I just don't see the opportunities in that world ever developing and at this point I am inclined to stay the course where I am at and shoot for partnership.


What do you think the partners are making (generally) at your firm?



Guessing 400K and up...

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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby h_jane_w » Wed Jan 16, 2013 4:52 pm

reasonable_man wrote:
MapsMapsMaps wrote:Hours worked, income received, and quality of life?


Very nice office in NYC. Awesome view from my office. Full staff at my disposal. I work monday to Friday. Usually 8am to about 630 or so unless I'm in court. Only work weekends in emergencies or during big trials or appeals (maybe two to three times per year). Bosses are extremely nice and partnership opportunity is there - but will take a number of years and nothing is ever certain. Work from home when I want to. Stress is low.

Salary is good. 100k and full benefits paid with no contribution from me. Yearly raises of at least 5 to 10% and bonuses of at least 10 to 15% at year end.


Omygod you are living the life. 6:30??....congrats

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reasonable_man
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby reasonable_man » Wed Jan 16, 2013 5:05 pm

h_jane_w wrote:
reasonable_man wrote:
MapsMapsMaps wrote:Hours worked, income received, and quality of life?


Very nice office in NYC. Awesome view from my office. Full staff at my disposal. I work monday to Friday. Usually 8am to about 630 or so unless I'm in court. Only work weekends in emergencies or during big trials or appeals (maybe two to three times per year). Bosses are extremely nice and partnership opportunity is there - but will take a number of years and nothing is ever certain. Work from home when I want to. Stress is low.

Salary is good. 100k and full benefits paid with no contribution from me. Yearly raises of at least 5 to 10% and bonuses of at least 10 to 15% at year end.


Omygod you are living the life. 6:30??....congrats


Thank you.. Right now its a little later because we got tapped to handle a HUGE case. But yea, normally about 6 to 6:30. And some days when I want to just write a brief from home in a pair of gym shorts and a t-shirt, I'll do that instead...

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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby doceydoe » Thu Jan 17, 2013 2:06 am

when hiring, who would you say makes a stronger candidate? a part-time student with relevant legal experience or a full time student with w/less legal experience but more extracurrics, law review, etc.

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reasonable_man
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Re: 08' TTT Grad at Small Boutique NYC Firm Taking Questions...

Postby reasonable_man » Thu Jan 17, 2013 7:52 pm

doceydoe wrote:when hiring, who would you say makes a stronger candidate? a part-time student with relevant legal experience or a full time student with w/less legal experience but more extracurrics, law review, etc.


For a small to mid-sized firm (under 100 lawyers) I think the part-time candidate is more attractive. By far.

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Postby Myself » Thu Jan 17, 2013 8:00 pm

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