WhiteCollarBlueShirt wrote:Anonymous User wrote:I'm in capital markets. Hated it as a first year because it was tedious and we seemed to add no value. Now as a mid-level my respect for the work hasn't changed (I still believe it is tedious and pointless), but my tolerance for it has. It's a lot less stressful now that I know what's going on, can run my own deals, and have little to no partner involvement (unless I have questions). Not sure if this is true in other capital markets practices, but at my firm most of our deals have detailed schedules. I still have some late nights and the occasional all-nighter, but I almost always know in advance when a bad day is coming.
I don't really get any satisfaction from completing a deal or doing an assignment well. I don't dislike my clients, but neither do I feel any obligation to them or interest in their problems. This job is pushing paper, and I've accepted that. Once I confirmed that this is just about the money and only for a short period of time to achieve financial independence, and once I had autonomy in my work, I came to kind of enjoy the job and all its perks.
There is a senior associate in our office who is really into the work and has gotten depressed lately as he is beginning to see that he's not going to be made partner/of counsel. Since I'm quitting in a few months, I tried to encourage him by expressing my belief that this job isn't worth caring so much about and there are more important things in life worthy of his attention.
He did not take kindly to my sentiments. He really cares about the clients, wants to work every weekend and holiday for them, wants to master the intricacies of indentures, and is proud of his growing body of legal knowledge and market practices. I cannot identify with any of his sentiments. But he's the kind of guy that is happy in biglaw.
This is the best summary I have seen in a while. It's a live to work vs. work to live sentiment that is made particularly evident by the fact that we are pushing forward other peoples' work. With the exception of Wachtell and a handful of other place, the only benefit to completing the work is billing hours and keeping the client happy, so that we can bill more hours--I definitely agree that it is hard to find satisfaction in that, but some sick people definitely do and power to them.
What differentiates firms like wachtell from the rest of the high paying firms? it seems like they are still doing the other people's work just for more money?