Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

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Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 24, 2016 5:22 pm

Words on the street say that SV firms, esp. for the emerging companies and VCs, value fits rather than stellar GPAs and prestige of school name. Why is that? Is this statement even true? How is the work environment/personality fit unique?

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Mr. Fancy

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby Mr. Fancy » Sat Sep 24, 2016 8:47 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Words on the street say that SV firms, esp. for the emerging companies and VCs, value fits rather than stellar GPAs and prestige of school name. Why is that? Is this statement even true? How is the work environment/personality fit unique?

Yes. Because you're expected to interface with the client and take on responsibility early so if you're a turd (even if law school smart) you're of little use.

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 25, 2016 3:09 am

I got this vibe. Interviewed almost exclusively in SV, top grades, and fared significantly better with the NY-based firms than the SV native firms. Wouldn't say I'm necessarily a turd though. *shrug*

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 25, 2016 12:43 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I got this vibe. Interviewed almost exclusively in SV, top grades, and fared significantly better with the NY-based firms than the SV native firms. Wouldn't say I'm necessarily a turd though. *shrug*



You're not a turd. SV firms might have larger class sizes than SF firms, but they are certainly smaller than the NY class sizes. So naturally, competition will be fiercer. Something similar happened to me, it has disheartening

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby Anonymous User » Sun Sep 25, 2016 9:48 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I got this vibe. Interviewed almost exclusively in SV, top grades, and fared significantly better with the NY-based firms than the SV native firms. Wouldn't say I'm necessarily a turd though. *shrug*



You're not a turd. SV firms might have larger class sizes than SF firms, but they are certainly smaller than the NY class sizes. So naturally, competition will be fiercer. Something similar happened to me, it has disheartening

I should clarify. I fared better with the SV offices of NY-based firms, than the SV offices of SV/bay area-based firms. It was very interesting to notice it happening. No idea why.

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 27, 2016 6:59 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I should clarify. I fared better with the SV offices of NY-based firms, than the SV offices of SV/bay area-based firms. It was very interesting to notice it happening. No idea why.


Can you list SV/bay area-based firms? Or at least where can we find such list?

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 27, 2016 7:08 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I got this vibe. Interviewed almost exclusively in SV, top grades, and fared significantly better with the NY-based firms than the SV native firms. Wouldn't say I'm necessarily a turd though. *shrug*


Same. I was 4/4 with my V10 offers and 0/4 for Fenwick/WSGR/Cooley/Gunderson. I was actually really bummed.

FWIW I think the native firms are way way more school/ties sensitive. I get the impression they would rather take median from Cal than top 10% from CCN. Michigan and Northwestern also strangely do very very well with these firms. It might be because they have yield issues with other schools.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Tue Sep 27, 2016 7:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 27, 2016 7:11 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I should clarify. I fared better with the SV offices of NY-based firms, than the SV offices of SV/bay area-based firms. It was very interesting to notice it happening. No idea why.


Can you list SV/bay area-based firms? Or at least where can we find such list?

Wilson, Fenwick, Cooley, Gunderson, Orrick, Mofo, KVN (very very boutique)

or you could just look at regional rankings. The norcal firms dominate the norcal vault rankings.

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 27, 2016 7:12 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I should clarify. I fared better with the SV offices of NY-based firms, than the SV offices of SV/bay area-based firms. It was very interesting to notice it happening. No idea why.


Can you list SV/bay area-based firms? Or at least where can we find such list?

Mofo, Cooley, Wilson Sonsini, Fenwick, Gunderson are ones off the top of my head.

Vault has a list of the top firm offices in Northern California. Not all of them are actually HQ in Northern California, but the top 4 are and some others on the list. I'm not sure where you could find a list of firms strictly by HQ.
http://www.vault.com/company-rankings/l ... sRankID=10

edit: scooped by 1 min above
Last edited by Anonymous User on Tue Sep 27, 2016 7:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 27, 2016 7:12 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I should clarify. I fared better with the SV offices of NY-based firms, than the SV offices of SV/bay area-based firms. It was very interesting to notice it happening. No idea why.


Can you list SV/bay area-based firms? Or at least where can we find such list?


Major Bay Area-based firms, in no particular order:
MoFo
Orrick
Pillsbury
Wilson
Cooley
Fenwick
Gunderson
Keker

New York-based firms with a presence in the Bay Area ("NY transplants"):
Weil
Davis Polk
Simpson
Skadden
White & Case
SullCrom
Shearman & Sterling

Firms with home offices based elsewhere but with a presence in the Bay:
Sidley (Chicago)
Kirkland (Chicago)
Winston (Chicago)
Latham (LA but global)
Goodwin (Boston)
Wilmer (Boston)
Ropes (Boston)
Jones Day (Cleveland but global)
Gibson (LA)
O'Melveny (LA)
Paul Hastings (LA)
Quinn (LA)
Munger (LA)
Morgan Lewis (Philly)
Baker Botts (Texas)
Arnold & Porter (DC)
Covington (DC)
Perkins (Seattle)
Hogan (DC)
DLA Piper (global verein)

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 27, 2016 7:23 pm

Baker & McKenzie also has offices in SF and Palo Alto.

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Sep 27, 2016 7:24 pm

NBD but Mayer Brown also has a small outpost.

ETA: also V&E and Sheppard Mullin

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby lurklaw » Tue Sep 27, 2016 10:00 pm

If the glove don't fits, you must acquits.

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Re: Why do SV firms value fits more than others?

Postby DreamShake » Wed Sep 28, 2016 1:46 am

Mr. Fancy wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Words on the street say that SV firms, esp. for the emerging companies and VCs, value fits rather than stellar GPAs and prestige of school name. Why is that? Is this statement even true? How is the work environment/personality fit unique?

Yes. Because you're expected to interface with the client and take on responsibility early so if you're a turd (even if law school smart) you're of little use.


This might play into it, but I suspect it's also a bit of a self-perpetuating cycle at this point. NYC firms care about GPAs and prestige because that's the basis on which many/most of the current headcount was brought in. Similar holds true for the SV firms and a certain personality and a skeptical view towards academics. It also probably relates to the clientele in another manner - the stereotypical SV work involves lots of direct client contact because the clients are start-ups that don't have the cash or big enough transactions to use a lot of partner time. The clients are often not business or legal-savvy at all, and even a second-year associate that's been cranking out a gazillion iterations of the same basic VC deal for two years can be like a god. In that context, GPA/school doesn't matter nearly as much for convincing clients to pay for your associates. The NYC firms, even the SV outposts, are mostly repping mature companies that want/can afford partner time and themselves place a premium on qualifications. Lastly, the VC deal process is the embodiment of the "a monkey could do it" punch line for a lot of junior work. The same is true for a lot of junior work regardless of locale, but when you have bigger clients, the work tends to get more complex/interesting the more senior you become. This isn't necessarily the case if all you're doing is VC deals.



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