Passionate or happy about Corporate Law?

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
umichman

Bronze
Posts: 332
Joined: Sun Nov 03, 2013 11:56 am

Re: Passionate or happy about Corporate Law?

Postby umichman » Wed Dec 14, 2016 12:41 pm

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?

WhiteCollarBlueShirt

Bronze
Posts: 205
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2016 2:11 pm

Re: Passionate or happy about Corporate Law?

Postby WhiteCollarBlueShirt » Wed Dec 14, 2016 12:45 pm

umichman wrote:
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?


Alternative billing, heard they do points or something closer to IBD fees... has nothing to do with associate life though and I could be wrong about that.

Anonymous User
Posts: 327276
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Passionate or happy about Corporate Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 14, 2016 1:02 pm

BayCat24 wrote:
1styearlateral wrote:
BayCat24 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
1styearlateral wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Also, in NYC, most high paying jobs are going to be terrible, not just law. Consulting, banking, even in-house at banks, are all pretty soul sucking. Seems like NYC is a different level when it comes to people attracted to these jobs (meaning, they are crazy people who care about little other than money).

This is true, for the most part. In NYC, you can't get paid like we do without the accompanying stress. The only difference between me and my IB/finance friends is that I have my own office and assistant. We all have long hours and immense stress.


Lol, I'm glad you're the optimistic sort. As a JD -> IB, I can tell you that however "stressful" finance can be, at least a) we're paid much more, and b) we get to dump shit on the lawyers at 10pm and not vice versa.


What is the pay difference/difference in career earning potential in general terms?

The payoff in IB is way more than most partners in biglaw. And once you are senior enough, you don't have nearly as much work on your plate (and you don't need to generate business). But I would say even less people make it in the IB world than people make partner in the legal world. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.


I am more interested in knowing the more common career trajectory - that is, lets assume neither the lawyer nor the I-banker makes partner/MD in this comparison.


It depends where you started and ended in IB. Here's some different ways things can go assuming we're only talking about BB people. Middle Market analysts trajectories can fluctuate much more wildly.

BB analyst who doesn't make associate-->HF/PE/VC/MBA

BB analysts who go to HF/PE/VC and gets cut/wants to move up-->MBA

MBA-->Management Consulting or back to IB/HF/PE/VC with a bump

IB/HF/PE/VC associate/VP who gets cut-->other and usually smaller and non-boutique IB/HF/PE/VC or In-House positions at F500-->eventually maybe a C-level position

BrainsyK

Bronze
Posts: 147
Joined: Mon Jul 18, 2016 5:37 am

Re: Passionate or happy about Corporate Law?

Postby BrainsyK » Wed Dec 14, 2016 1:03 pm

.
Last edited by BrainsyK on Wed Jan 18, 2017 2:13 am, edited 1 time in total.

ruski

Bronze
Posts: 425
Joined: Sat Sep 12, 2009 10:45 am

Re: Passionate or happy about Corporate Law?

Postby ruski » Wed Dec 14, 2016 2:04 pm

lols at any BB analyst actually gunning for associate. all are gunning for a top PE/HF spot. also more and more are leaving finance altogether and either start their own start up or join one. young guys no longer dream of being HF managers

BayCat24

New
Posts: 24
Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2016 11:55 am

Re: Passionate or happy about Corporate Law?

Postby BayCat24 » Wed Dec 14, 2016 2:29 pm

ruski wrote:lols at any BB analyst actually gunning for associate. all are gunning for a top PE/HF spot. also more and more are leaving finance altogether and either start their own start up or join one. young guys no longer dream of being HF managers


Sorry - my initial question was their earning trajectory. It was said earlier they make much more than associates - how much more? Again, lets assume not MD/partner track. Comparing career of bankers vs big law lawyers who go in house or stay to become senior associates etc.

1styearlateral

Silver
Posts: 836
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2016 3:55 pm

Re: Passionate or happy about Corporate Law?

Postby 1styearlateral » Wed Dec 14, 2016 3:22 pm

BayCat24 wrote:
ruski wrote:lols at any BB analyst actually gunning for associate. all are gunning for a top PE/HF spot. also more and more are leaving finance altogether and either start their own start up or join one. young guys no longer dream of being HF managers


Sorry - my initial question was their earning trajectory. It was said earlier they make much more than associates - how much more? Again, lets assume not MD/partner track. Comparing career of bankers vs big law lawyers who go in house or stay to become senior associates etc.

Anecdotally, a friend of mine made $50k in bonus last year. Mind you, he didn't waste 3 years and $150-200k in loans. So making $200k as a 23 y/o isn't too shabby. And the bonuses increase exponentially depending on your performance.

Anonymous User
Posts: 327276
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Passionate or happy about Corporate Law?

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Dec 15, 2016 11:55 am

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 perfectly on point. The work is tedious and a vast majority of it adds no value. You will spend endless nights drafting things that no one, not even the senior lawyers working with you, will ever read. At a certain point though you realize you are content doing things that are completely pointless and add no value, because the job pays well and in a few years you can move on to better options. If you look at it as an unpleasant but necessary 3-6 years that will serve you well in the long run, then you can be pretty content. Not happy, but content in the knowledge that you are working hard to eventually be able to have a better life for yourself and your family. If you go in with low (realistic) expectations then you will be glad when you can leave at 8, or when opposing counsel isn't an asshole, or when you actually get a meaningful or interesting task. As sick as it sounds, it also helps a lot to have friends/family who don't make nearly as much as you do. Yes, you will work significantly harder, but not having money creates a whole universe of shit as well and your job generally shields you from all of this. It's easy to forget that, especially given how privileged many law school grads are. Everyone has problems and you realize yours aren't particularly unique or awful.

But a lot of people, like senior associate above, either genuinely like the job or simply have nothing better to do. I find it absolutely shocking that out of all the amazing possibilities the world, people would actually want to spend 16 hours a day bickering about "best" vs "reasonable" in a document no one will read, but to each his own. For most it is a means to an end, for some it seems to be the end.

BayCat24

New
Posts: 24
Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2016 11:55 am

Re: Passionate or happy about Corporate Law?

Postby BayCat24 » Thu Dec 15, 2016 2:42 pm

1styearlateral wrote:
BayCat24 wrote:
ruski wrote:lols at any BB analyst actually gunning for associate. all are gunning for a top PE/HF spot. also more and more are leaving finance altogether and either start their own start up or join one. young guys no longer dream of being HF managers


Sorry - my initial question was their earning trajectory. It was said earlier they make much more than associates - how much more? Again, lets assume not MD/partner track. Comparing career of bankers vs big law lawyers who go in house or stay to become senior associates etc.

Anecdotally, a friend of mine made $50k in bonus last year. Mind you, he didn't waste 3 years and $150-200k in loans. So making $200k as a 23 y/o isn't too shabby. And the bonuses increase exponentially depending on your performance.


I wasn't under the impression that 1st year analysts make 150k salary - anyone else have info on this

User avatar
Clemenceau

Silver
Posts: 942
Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2014 11:33 am

Re: Passionate or happy about Corporate Law?

Postby Clemenceau » Thu Dec 15, 2016 3:05 pm

BayCat24 wrote:
1styearlateral wrote:
BayCat24 wrote:
ruski wrote:lols at any BB analyst actually gunning for associate. all are gunning for a top PE/HF spot. also more and more are leaving finance altogether and either start their own start up or join one. young guys no longer dream of being HF managers


Sorry - my initial question was their earning trajectory. It was said earlier they make much more than associates - how much more? Again, lets assume not MD/partner track. Comparing career of bankers vs big law lawyers who go in house or stay to become senior associates etc.

Anecdotally, a friend of mine made $50k in bonus last year. Mind you, he didn't waste 3 years and $150-200k in loans. So making $200k as a 23 y/o isn't too shabby. And the bonuses increase exponentially depending on your performance.


I wasn't under the impression that 1st year analysts make 150k salary - anyone else have info on this


They certainly don't at the bb shops. Highest I've seen is 85 base there. Not familiar with what pe/hf people can pull.

ruski

Bronze
Posts: 425
Joined: Sat Sep 12, 2009 10:45 am

Re: Passionate or happy about Corporate Law?

Postby ruski » Fri Dec 16, 2016 9:58 am

Clemenceau wrote:
BayCat24 wrote:
1styearlateral wrote:
BayCat24 wrote:
ruski wrote:lols at any BB analyst actually gunning for associate. all are gunning for a top PE/HF spot. also more and more are leaving finance altogether and either start their own start up or join one. young guys no longer dream of being HF managers


Sorry - my initial question was their earning trajectory. It was said earlier they make much more than associates - how much more? Again, lets assume not MD/partner track. Comparing career of bankers vs big law lawyers who go in house or stay to become senior associates etc.

Anecdotally, a friend of mine made $50k in bonus last year. Mind you, he didn't waste 3 years and $150-200k in loans. So making $200k as a 23 y/o isn't too shabby. And the bonuses increase exponentially depending on your performance.


I wasn't under the impression that 1st year analysts make 150k salary - anyone else have info on this


They certainly don't at the bb shops. Highest I've seen is 85 base there. Not familiar with what pe/hf people can pull.


yea its like 85 or 90 base. a 20-30k bonus is probably more realistic for bonus for a first year analyst (bonuses aren't lockstep, and are given based on performance). I think there is also like a 5-10k signing bonus. still not bad for a 22 year old. and barely any of the PE/HF shops take out of college, and if they do they aren't paying them big bucks.



Return to “Legal Employment�

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.