Paul Weiss Corporate - Exit Ops

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Paul Weiss Corporate - Exit Ops

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 07, 2013 12:27 pm

Anyone have an idea what the exit opportunities are like out of Paul Weiss corporate since the practice has been expanding. What firms would it be comparable to?

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thesealocust
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Re: Paul Weiss Corporate - Exit Ops

Postby thesealocust » Sat Sep 07, 2013 12:51 pm

Like always, exit options will be strongest to clients and to firms which have similar but lesser regarded practice areas (i.e. that poach laterals from "better" firms).

I know it's maddening since it seems so important, but it's very hard to rank these things and there's not a hell of a lot of data out there to aggregate. Chambers rankings of the practice areas is probably your best bet.

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Re: Paul Weiss Corporate - Exit Ops

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 07, 2013 4:07 pm

I am interested in this as well. Just got an offer from Paul Weiss. Corporate.

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Old Gregg
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Re: Paul Weiss Corporate - Exit Ops

Postby Old Gregg » Sat Sep 07, 2013 4:16 pm

thesealocust wrote:Like always, exit options will be strongest to clients and to firms which have similar but lesser regarded practice areas (i.e. that poach laterals from "better" firms).


It's not really that linear at all.

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Re: Paul Weiss Corporate - Exit Ops

Postby thesealocust » Sat Sep 07, 2013 5:22 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:
thesealocust wrote:Like always, exit options will be strongest to clients and to firms which have similar but lesser regarded practice areas (i.e. that poach laterals from "better" firms).


It's not really that linear at all.



* shrug * do you have a better way to explain it or to respond to OP's question? No matter how much attention I pay or research I do "exit options" remain pretty damn murky and mysterious. One of the only concrete things I've ever discovered was that if you muck around associate and partner bios long enough, you'll see movement from certain firms/geographies towards other firms/geographies much more commonly than you will in reverse. As for exit options, I've seen first hand a lot of people leave firms and move to clients (or businesses in related industries), or to regulators of clients.

So I really don't know what else to add beyond that, but I wish I did, because it's what everybody wants to know...

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Re: Paul Weiss Corporate - Exit Ops

Postby Old Gregg » Sat Sep 07, 2013 5:56 pm

You will never get an answer that satisfies you and neither will anyone else on this forum. Exit options aren't like law firm offers, and law firm offers aren't like law school admissions. The whole process is entirely at odds with the "I have a X GPA and Y LSAT, where will I get in" mentality. The real world doesn't really move in such a linear and predictable fashion.

I get where it's coming from. It's a combination of risk aversion and not wanting to take things for granted (though, perversely, knowing what you can do can lead you to take things for granted). But that's just not how it works, and it's really time to step out of the bubble and embrace how things really happen. There's nothing out there that says "If V5, then V10 and lower," or "if V5, then F50 or lower." I just sort of roll my eyes whenever I read about exit options: no matter what there is to say, the answer will never satisfy because it doesn't come in the form of a fucking chart.

Your exit options are primarily dependent on three factors: your experience, your connections and the clients you or your firm works with. Is there a job posting? Do you have the experience they want? If yes, well you have a shot. If no, then good luck who knows. Connections and clients are self-explanatory

But to drill it all down: If a position is looking for x, and I have x, I will almost certainly get the job (assuming I don't fuck up the interview). The firm could be Wachtell (and they have been looking for people, for sure), the firm could be Arendt Fox. It doesn't matter.

Now yes, you can discern certain patterns from the exits you're seeing, but its hard to make a formula out of them. Yes, a lot of people leave prestigious firms to go to "less prestigious" firms. But the take-away shouldn't be "well, that means you can only go down instead of up." It could mean: "Well, associate feels that the other firm affords better hours or provides better partnership prospects or gives him more responsibility to get the experience he wants in a certain practice area." And more often than not, it is one of those factors.

I'm at a V10 firm and could almost certainly go to another V10 or V5. I can also tell you right now that I don't really care to do that, and if I leave my firm I am confident I won't even try for that. If I leave my firm, it'll be for better hours and roughly equal pay. I know I won't get that at Simpson Thacher instead of where I am now, and I definitely won't get that at S&C, so why do that to myself??

Anyways, I'm rambling. TL/DR: Stop thinking about ladders and start thinking about getting the experience that you want and making connections. Those will influence your "exit options" a lot more than "well fuck I chose V2 instead of V8."

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Re: Paul Weiss Corporate - Exit Ops

Postby thesealocust » Sat Sep 07, 2013 6:11 pm

Excellent write up, and I agree with everything you wrote.

Still, if somebody is looking for how the exit options at firm X stack up with other places they might be considering, I'm not sure there's much to do besides point them to news clippings/league tables to learn what clients that firm does (or doesn't) have and the chambers & partners guides to get at least on source slightly less terrible than vault to opine on strength of the practice relative to other firms doing the same thing.

I don't think anybody would argue that V10/V15ish "exit options" from an M&A practice in NYC are "better" than from V50ish firms, but it's still hard to pinpoint in exactly what way they would be better (more pay? more options? certain options foreclosed from the get-go?), and where to draw lines when there's less of a gap between the firms.

How does Paul Weiss stack up against its peers? Hell if I know. I bet you'd have more choices than from McGuire Woods NYC, but that's really just instinct not based on data. Paul Weiss vs. Debevoise? Vs. Skadden? Vs. Paul Hastings?

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Re: Paul Weiss Corporate - Exit Ops

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 07, 2013 6:18 pm

Fresh Prince wrote:But the take-away shouldn't be "well, that means you can only go down instead of up." [/b]


Can an associate actually trade up later on down the line, though? Supposing someone starts at a V50, is there a realistic chance that (s)he could move up to a V25 or even V10?

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thesealocust
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Re: Paul Weiss Corporate - Exit Ops

Postby thesealocust » Sat Sep 07, 2013 6:26 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Fresh Prince wrote:But the take-away shouldn't be "well, that means you can only go down instead of up." [/b]


Can an associate actually trade up later on down the line, though? Supposing someone starts at a V50, is there a realistic chance that (s)he could move up to a V25 or even V10?


By the time you want to make an exit from a firm, you'll hopefully realize vault ranking is meaningless (unless you're doing M&A in NYC, in which case it is accidentally kind of relevant). As Fresh Prince pointed out, "better" often just means "more work for the same pay" - if it means anything at all - so it's somewhat doubtful you would want to make a move like that.

If you did, it would probably depend a lot on circumstance. My experience has been that you can identify firms which rarely hire laterls, or tend to be very snobby about it when they do, as well as other firms that tend to hire a lot of laterals.

Anyway, law firms have amusingly robust databases of their attorneys, which often includes prior experience. Get your Google on and you can try to answer yourself. Pick some firms/practice areas and use search engines on law firms.

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Re: Paul Weiss Corporate - Exit Ops

Postby Old Gregg » Sat Sep 07, 2013 10:37 pm

Still, if somebody is looking for how the exit options at firm X stack up with other places they might be considering, I'm not sure there's much to do besides point them to news clippings/league tables to learn what clients that firm does (or doesn't) have and the chambers & partners guides to get at least on source slightly less terrible than vault to opine on strength of the practice relative to other firms doing the same thing.


The focus should be on researching which firm will cultivate the experiences you need to go to the next step. If you want to go in house, public company practices are best. Do you want a tech edge to that or want to focus in tech companies? IP transactional. Private equity funds? Firms that specialize in private equity. Tax? Look for a solid tax group.

But the analysis doesn't end there. You want to go to a firm that lets you learn as much as possible. Three years of diligence on public deals at Skadden makes you as unmarketable to public companies as... Well, you get the picture.

People on this forum, when asking about firms, should not be asking about exits.
They should be asking: "what kind of work can I do as a junior?" This experience shapes so much more.




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