Exit opps - Biglaw v client prestige

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Exit opps - Biglaw v client prestige

Postby JackDaniels^ » Sat Oct 26, 2013 6:22 pm

I am working as a first year associate in corporate law in Europe. Rankings here do not seem to play such a big part of our lives than they (apparently) do in the U.S., but as I plan on transferring to the US in <2 years from now, I am curious to hear your opinions about the following topic.

A lot of people seem to use Vault as their bible to rank prestigious big law firms. Obviously, these rankings are based on how associates perceive firms amongst each other. However, a vast majority of biglaw lawyers do not stick it out till partner and wish to exit into an industry. Looking at how clients rank law firms, I can't help noticing a big discrepancy between how associates and how billion dollar companies rank law firms (http://www.acritas.com/USbrandindex2013).

I totally see this confirmed when I speak with a very close friend of mine who works as an associate in a Bulge Bracket (IBD). He knows Skadden, Baker & McKenzie, Jones Day, DLA Piper, but he never heard of firms such as Cleary Gottlieb, Shearman & Stearling et cetera. People who want to exit into an industry seem to be so focused on their own rankings that they are barely aware that other people may not perceive their prestigious firm in the same way as they do.

My conclusion: Law students are too focused on Vault rankings. It might help if you want to switch from a V3 to a V10 firm, but if you want to exit into an industry, client rankings are equally, if not more, important.

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Re: Exit opps - Biglaw v client prestige

Postby stillwater » Sat Oct 26, 2013 6:35 pm

The real power players bail Watchell for Stroock to get dat Bulge Bracket.

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Re: Exit opps - Biglaw v client prestige

Postby thesealocust » Sat Oct 26, 2013 7:07 pm

Vault rankings are dumb, but that "client ranking" thing is also irredeemably dumb.

Chambers & Partners, while hardly perfect, is by far the best resource for this kind of thing - especially coupled with real, concrete information (read up on big deals/cases, check league tables, see which firms are losing people to federal judgeships/agency heads/whatever, etc.) that doesn't lend itself well to tabulating rankings.

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