Breaking the Mold

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Mickfromgm

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby Mickfromgm » Wed May 10, 2017 8:44 am

In retrospect, I realize:

1. If you go work at a BigLaw thinking that you (a law student) have a great chance of becoming an equity partner eventually, most lawyers there would ROFLOL. Most associates don't last 4-5 years; in fact, you'd be shocked by the number of associates who quit or are fired within 2-3 years . . . and those who make partner at a major metro market BigLaw are, almost without exception, hard-working brilliant people, believe it or not. If you are just "very smart", that is often not enough, with exception of rainmakers and those with expertise in a highly complex and regulated field;

2. However, BigLaw is great in that you make ungodly money (to most normal humans) that you don't really deserve, at least in the beginning because the revenue you generate would be a lot less than your comp + benefits + marginal overhead costs. For many, having a BigLaw job is a source of pride and a reason for looking down on lesser fortunate people . . . . sadly;

3. Most importantly, BigLaw might be the best stepping stone for an attorney. It opens so many doors later on. You can go "downhill" but it's extremely hard to go "uphill". For example, you can move on to a small/medium firm or in-house at large corporation very easily if you start at BigLaw, but often near darn impossible to do that in reverse order. If you don't start at BigLaw, there is very little chance of ever working at BigLaw later on (with some exceptions, of course). Just check out job listings on Indeed and others for in-house counsel jobs -- many/most expressly require 2-3 years (at least) of experience at one of the big boys;

4. BigLaw provides the absolute best training opportunity for new lawyers. Never mind that they are paying you bazillion dollars for the privilege of training you, but your work product will literally be reviewed with a fine tooth comb by multiple people, e.g., first by a mid-level associate, then a senior-level associate, and then the partner, so on, who really know what they are doing. They will give you detailed feedback on what you did right and what you did wrong. You revise your work, they comment further, and repeat, until the work product is perceived by the partner or others to be near perfect. And you have hundreds of colleagues in the same building that you can go to for expert advice.

On the other hand, if you go to a small firm or governmental entity, you get a lot of responsibilities early on in comparison to BigLaw because they run thin, but you are so busy "doing" stuff and no one really oversees you, or teaches you stuff, in a meaningful way. As a result, many people in that environment just wing it and keep reinforcing bad habits . . . and as a new graduate, I can assure you 100% that you will have no clue how to do anything worthwhile at first (other than research and memo writing and such);

5. Listen, you went to law school for 3 years and spent over $150K or whatnot to learn, well, law stuff. So you naturally want to work in an environment where your legal knowledge is valuable, right? As in, you don't want to go back to a job similar to what you had before law school. Like I said above, in law school, you don't learn anything with real life application but research and writing memos and such, which are useless for the most part if you want to go work for, or found, a startup or other ventures. So, what value are you going to confer to those employer exactly? When they hire or partner up with a lawyer, they generally want someone who instantly knows what the company ought to do from a legal perspective in any given situation. In a super fast business environment, you often won't have time to crack a treatise and try to learn the law.

Just to give you an example, I knew I wanted to be a corporate lawyer early on, so I took Corporations, Corporations II, Securities Regulations I, II and III, and Mergers & Acquisitions I and II, and other courses like that, with great professors at a T5 back then. I actually studied for once, and did well in those courses. Yet I found out that what I learned had very little real-life application as an attorney, at least for the first couple of years when you are told to work on the individual smaller "trees" without much regard to the "forest."

FYI.
Last edited by Mickfromgm on Wed May 10, 2017 8:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

Jchance

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby Jchance » Wed May 10, 2017 8:50 am

because lawyering, at the end of the day, is a service profession. Lawyers don't go make new things, they help make previous things work. You go to law firms to learn the necessary skills to service clients.

That said, a lot of Stanford Law students/grads get into legal startups. If that's your thing, transfer there to be with like-minded folks.

Bluem_11

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby Bluem_11 » Wed May 10, 2017 8:53 am

jarofsoup wrote:Yet is a very mold profession. You don't break the mold, it breaks you.


Greater truths have never been spoken.

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A. Nony Mouse

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Wed May 10, 2017 9:28 am

Mickfromgm wrote: On the other hand, if you go to a small firm or governmental entity, you get a lot of responsibilities early on in comparison to BigLaw because they run thin, but you are so busy "doing" stuff and no one really oversees you, or teaches you stuff, in a meaningful way.

Just FTR, this has not been my experience in the government (re: training - it is true about responsibilities). It will vary by job, of course, but you can get a lot of excellent training by learning while doing.

ughbugchugplug

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby ughbugchugplug » Wed May 10, 2017 9:34 am

This thread is everything I look for on TLS: headstrong and ignorant OP who takes the time to brag about grades, 20 posts going after his choice of words, and someone trying to make this about privilege

10/10

RaceJudicata

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby RaceJudicata » Wed May 10, 2017 9:46 am

Anonymous User wrote:I am a 1L who is probably going to be fine in terms of OCI.


Best line.

snowball2

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby snowball2 » Wed May 10, 2017 9:57 am

As the others have pointed out you're coming at this from a very naive viewpoint. You do biglaw because you can. For those fortunate enough to have the opportunity, it's a stepping stone to an AUSA position, clerkships, in-house positions and, yes, entrepreneurial endeavors. It's effectively a post-grad learning opportunity.

You have little to no real-life lawyering skills coming straight out of law school. Why not take advantage of an opportunity to enhance your (actual or perceived) marketability, especially when you're being paid handsomely in the process?

Also, the "mold" isn't especially large. The percentage of grads going into biglaw jobs is <10%; so the remaining 90% are doing the government/clerkship/small firm/entrepreneurial thing.

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby Anonymous User » Wed May 10, 2017 11:19 am

This is OP at OCI

Interviewer: why do you want join us?
OP: I wanna be captain and not be somebody's bitch for endless years.
*intrerviewer slow caps*.....ding.

Why do law if you wanna be captain? Go to sailing school.

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Mr. Blackacre

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby Mr. Blackacre » Wed May 10, 2017 11:24 am

Anonymous User wrote:This is OP at OCI

Interviewer: why do you want join us?
OP: I wanna be captain and not be somebody's bitch for endless years.
*intrerviewer slow caps*.....ding.

Why do law if you wanna be captain? Go to sailing school.


Solid anon use. Also, you're insulting army captains. OP could go through OCS and become a captain in no time. He seems like the kind of guy who has the drive to go up in rank very quickly.

SFSpartan

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby SFSpartan » Wed May 10, 2017 11:27 am

As others have pointed out, you do biglaw for the exit opps. Also, I don't think you appreciate (i) how nice it is to have a job that allows you to pay off debt relatively quickly; (ii) the fact that the profession encourages risk-averse behavior by really fucking people that don't get jobs; and (iii) the piece of mind that comes from knowing you have a job well head of graduation.

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elendinel

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby elendinel » Wed May 10, 2017 2:15 pm

Why even do OCI if you don't want to be a drone?

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Dr. Nefario

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby Dr. Nefario » Wed May 10, 2017 2:23 pm

OP, I believe this speaks to your thread

Image

candidlatke

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby candidlatke » Wed May 10, 2017 3:00 pm

honestly op you sound like my little brother who's like 16 and angsty who constantly tries to make himself seem better than everyone else/morally superior by lamenting over cultural norms

Bluem_11

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby Bluem_11 » Wed May 10, 2017 3:02 pm

candidlatke wrote:honestly op you sound like my little brother who's like 16 and angsty who constantly tries to make himself seem better than everyone else/morally superior by lamenting over cultural norms


If I had a handle on cultural norms at 16 I'd probably be quite egotistical myself.

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby Anonymous User » Wed May 10, 2017 3:07 pm

I'll bite on this. I won't lie, the money is nice but the work kinda blows. It's interesting at time but most the time it's kinda bland and nothing too exciting. That said I come from IBanking and that wasn't much better. Money was about the same but always had a better upside, yet that wasn't guaranteed. So I'm working on a few side projects and if one of them takes off to the extent I can pay down loans and have more fun, I'll do that. Right now I'm content with what's going on but I'm for sure not wed to this lifestyle of Biglaw. I probably take a few more liberties with my work life - have already taken a week vacation 6 months in, going again this fall to Europe, taking off for the 4th and Memorial Day weekend to see friends around the country, take business casual to the extreme with boat shoes and chinos, etc. So far no one has had any issues, but reviews will let me know otherwise.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Thu May 11, 2017 10:09 am, edited 1 time in total.

dixiecupdrinking

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby dixiecupdrinking » Wed May 10, 2017 3:38 pm

Although the idea of "just do Captain of industry" is obviously silly, few of the happiest lawyers I know are in biglaw. If you have something else you're really interested in doing, do it. Even if it pays less.

Of course most people don't have that and that's why they're in biglaw, and you could do worse for a few years even though the job does suck in a lot of ways.

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Mickfromgm

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby Mickfromgm » Wed May 10, 2017 6:47 pm

ughbugchugplug wrote:This thread is everything I look for on TLS: headstrong and ignorant OP who takes the time to brag about grades, 20 posts going after his choice of words, and someone trying to make this about privilege

10/10


lol, love it.

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Mickfromgm

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby Mickfromgm » Wed May 10, 2017 6:49 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I'll bite on this. I won't lie, the money is nice but the work kinda blows. It's interesting at time but most the time it's kinda bland and nothing too exciting. That said I come from IBanking and that wasn't much better. Money was about the same but always had a better upside, yet that wasn't guaranteed. So I'm working on a few side projects and if one of them takes off to the extent I can pay down loans and have more fun, I'll do that. Right now I'm content with what's going on but I'm for sure not wed to this lifestyle of Biglaw. I probably take a few more liberties with my work life - have already taken a week vacation 6 months in, going again this fall to Europe, taking off for the 4th and Memorial Day weekend to see friends around the country, take business casual to the extreme with boot shoes and chinos, etc. So far no one has had any issues, but reviews will let me know otherwise.


Ya, it's gets annoying sometimes that laypeople think that i-banking, BigLaw and medicine are nirvana. There is always a nasty underbelly. You have to take the bitter with the sweet, just like everything else in life I suppose.

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sam91

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Re: Breaking the Mold

Postby sam91 » Wed May 10, 2017 10:57 pm

I hate to be that guy as a previous poster alluded to, but to question why someone would want to accept 180k starting salary 2 years in advance of graduation must mean that you come from a monsoon of privilege.

Again, I can understand that being a "cog" might seem like a cop out to you (given your high moral footing and the extreme likelihood that you'll be leading your own vessel one day) but have you ever questioned whether it was just slightly possible some of us came from lower to middle class backgrounds? And that some see biglaw (as many posters above have alluded to) as a stepping stone to a hopefully successful career? Maybe even to pay off that 200k debt we just took on? "Why would anyone ever do it" he says.....Un-REAL.

Sorry for the angered rant but I've met this type of person too many times in law school. High horse moral masturbation. When you have a trust fund, its very easy to go fight the good fight and if money follows its just icing. (For those who fight the good fight despite financial hardship, well I guess you're a better man than I)



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