Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

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Graybrow

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby Graybrow » Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:35 pm

Thanks for stopping in! I’m going to be an SA this summer and will be doing corporate. I have very little conception of what it means to be a corporate associate though. What advice do you have for learning how to be useful as a junior?

biglaw-ama

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby biglaw-ama » Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:51 pm

Graybrow wrote:Thanks for stopping in! I’m going to be an SA this summer and will be doing corporate. I have very little conception of what it means to be a corporate associate though. What advice do you have for learning how to be useful as a junior?


Listen, take notes, be attentive, do your best, and do it on time. Everyone knows that law school doesn't remotely prepare you for transactional practice. You're going to feel like you're learning to swim for a year or two. Ask questions -- ask the junior associate, ask the midlevel, ask the senior. Ask the partner if there's a good time to do so. We've all been there. Try your hardest and produce the best and most informed work product you can produce. And do it ON TIME. Associates know they'll have to review and revise your work -- that's why we give you the deadlines you got. Blowing one has a domino effect. And as a SA, it looks REALLY bad.

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 09, 2018 1:05 pm

Whats your specific corporate practice area and if you could go back, would you have tried to start out in a different one?

biglaw-ama

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby biglaw-ama » Fri Feb 09, 2018 1:12 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Whats your specific corporate practice area and if you could go back, would you have tried to start out in a different one?


M&A. Nope. To the contrary, I am very happy that I'm in M&A and really don't care for other corporate practice groups' work as much as mine.

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 09, 2018 1:15 pm

Thanks for taking questions. I am a junior associate who’s looking to switch practice groups to M&A or cap markets (by lateraling) but having a bit of trouble getting traction. How is the lateral market for juniors right now? Do you have any advice for those who are looking to switch practice groups?

biglaw-ama

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby biglaw-ama » Fri Feb 09, 2018 2:34 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Thanks for taking questions. I am a junior associate who’s looking to switch practice groups to M&A or cap markets (by lateraling) but having a bit of trouble getting traction. How is the lateral market for juniors right now? Do you have any advice for those who are looking to switch practice groups?


From what practice?

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deepseapartners

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby deepseapartners » Fri Feb 09, 2018 2:55 pm

What are the major differences between the two firms you’ve worked at?

If you could tell your sleepless junior associate self anything back in 07-09, what would you have said?

Similarly, is there any skill you think is so important that you would recommend doing whatever it is at the expense of losing a week of vacation and the higher possibility of burnout that would accompany that decision?

What would you have done career-wise if you didn’t get into law school?

biglaw-ama

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby biglaw-ama » Fri Feb 09, 2018 3:25 pm

deepseapartners wrote:What are the major differences between the two firms you’ve worked at?


Culture. My first firm allowed toxic partners, counsel, and senior associates to have free reign and be awful to midlevels, juniors, staff, and secretaries. A particular partner literally bragged about making first-years cry. In part due to the horror stories about BigLaw, I thought this was par for the course and the money that I was being paid.

Morale, too, but that follows from culture. I truly believe the firm I work for now values its associates, and it shows in culture, compensation (we don't "pay market" but invent reasons to hose people and have only 30% of people make bonus), and transparency.

If you could tell your sleepless junior associate self anything back in 07-09, what would you have said?


something that a good friend of mine said to me my third year -- "Not every firm is like this. You work for some really bad people. We have bad people here too, but nothing like you seem to have. It's just a couple, and you can avoid them."

Similarly, is there any skill you think is so important that you would recommend doing whatever it is at the expense of losing a week of vacation and the higher possibility of burnout that would accompany that decision?


As in having a vacation planned, but canceling it because there's some exciting work coming up? No. Maybe there's something weird in Litigation like arguing before SCOTUS (as if an associate would ever do this), but I can't think of anything in M&A that doesn't recur ever.

What would you have done career-wise if you didn’t get into law school?


Probably swung for I-Banking and either failed and who knows or got in and flamed out.

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 09, 2018 3:28 pm

biglaw-ama wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Thanks for taking questions. I am a junior associate who’s looking to switch practice groups to M&A or cap markets (by lateraling) but having a bit of trouble getting traction. How is the lateral market for juniors right now? Do you have any advice for those who are looking to switch practice groups?


From what practice?


From finance

biglaw-ama

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby biglaw-ama » Fri Feb 09, 2018 3:47 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
biglaw-ama wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Thanks for taking questions. I am a junior associate who’s looking to switch practice groups to M&A or cap markets (by lateraling) but having a bit of trouble getting traction. How is the lateral market for juniors right now? Do you have any advice for those who are looking to switch practice groups?


From what practice?


From finance


Honestly, I'd switch internally if at all possible, even if it burns bridges, then try to lateral with some experience. Switching through lateraling is really hard and probably requires a really good headhunter or a personal connection to advance your cause, otherwise recruiting will wonder why a 2nd year in finance is applying for the junior M&A position.

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 09, 2018 4:44 pm

can you let us know what major market you were in for your first firm?

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 09, 2018 5:20 pm

former biglaw 2nd yr associate here, considering moving back to biglaw (same practice) after 1 year in-house, chances/thoughts?

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Lacepiece23

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby Lacepiece23 » Fri Feb 09, 2018 5:20 pm

Do you like biglaw? I'm sure you've seen the other thread on biglaw being terrible, if so, why do you like it?

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby v5junior » Fri Feb 09, 2018 5:32 pm

Hours billed each year since starting? (separating billable, and, if applicable, pro-bono/recruiting/other non-billable)

biglaw-ama

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby biglaw-ama » Fri Feb 09, 2018 5:35 pm

Anonymous User wrote:can you let us know what major market you were in for your first firm?


NYC

Anonymous User wrote:former biglaw 2nd yr associate here, considering moving back to biglaw (same practice) after 1 year in-house, chances/thoughts?


Why'd you leave? I think you need a good story here, maybe try and go back to your original firm? That reads to a lot of biglaw partners that you couldn't hack it in biglaw, but now you miss the money.

Lacepiece23 wrote:Do you like biglaw? I'm sure you've seen the other thread on biglaw being terrible, if so, why do you like it?


I do. The positives are things I like: important deals that make the front page of the WSJ, challenging work, my firm culture, my friends at work, the money. The negatives are things that don't particularly bother me: the hours, being on call, exacting minutiae being crucial to my job.

biglaw-ama

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby biglaw-ama » Fri Feb 09, 2018 5:38 pm

v5junior wrote:Hours billed each year since starting? (separating billable, and, if applicable, pro-bono/recruiting/other non-billable)


I have no clue, and this would be pretty annoying to get. Since I have my 2017 review on my desk, last year is easy:

Total hours: around 2250
Pro Bono and Non Billable: around 150
Billable: around 2100

I received an above-market bonus.

The year before, I billed around 1900 with the same 150 or so Pro Bono and Non Billable. I received a market bonus for 2016.

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Re: Senior Corporate Associate in BigLaw in a Major Market taking questions

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 09, 2018 5:46 pm

v5junior wrote:Hours billed each year since starting? (separating billable, and, if applicable, pro-bono/recruiting/other non-billable)


Yeah this is always a good question, especially for seniors. TLS is full of people with 1 or 2 years overly focusing on their particular small pool of experience. For both better and worse.



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