Picking a Firm

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Anonymous User
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Picking a Firm

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:04 am

I need help choosing between:

DPW NY
UK firm NY office
DC firm V20 firm NY office
NYC V20 firm NY office

I'm torn between DPW for obvious reasons and some of the arguably more risky but cool opportunities at a UK firm growing their NY office or a career with a DC firm that will lead to government connections or prominent posts in governmental agencies. I think I'm leaning corporate but I like it all.

Anonymous User
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Re: Picking a Firm

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:09 am

Anonymous User wrote:I need help choosing between:

DPW NY
UK firm NY office
DC firm V20 firm NY office
NYC V20 firm NY office

I'm torn between DPW for obvious reasons and some of the arguably more risky but cool opportunities at a UK firm growing their NY office or a career with a DC firm that will lead to government connections or prominent posts in governmental agencies. I think I'm leaning corporate but I like it all.


In this economy, you don't "pick" you just take whatever you can get.

Anonymous User
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Re: Picking a Firm

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:35 am

If there is something specific that you have a burning desire to do at one of the other firms that DPW doesn't have then it is not silly to turn them down (I did - hence the anonymous post).

But if you are still just floating around unsure of what to specialize in then you really can't go wrong with DPW. I cannot imagine why you would want to work at one of the UK firm's branch office in the US for a whole hosts of reasons. I don't know if you noticed but the magic circle is getting absolutely hammered all across the globe right now and several UK firm's NY offices are bleeding partners.

DC firm is tougher, especially if you want to work in government at some point, but NY has some interesting government options as well and plenty of DPW alums seem to be able to go work wherever they want so DPW is certainly not going to shut you out of government. I can't imagine why you would choose a 'lesser' NY firm unless they had a specialty that you were really interested in. It depends if you're talking DPW vs. Deb, or DPW v. Paul Weiss, but DPW vs. Shearman is a no brainer. Last thing, don't go by the vault rankings unless you really think a mid law litigation associate from Kansas city is qualified to rank the NY corporate practices (which is how vault works), use Chambers instead.

Anonymous User
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Re: Picking a Firm

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 24, 2009 10:10 am

I assume by UK firm looking to expand in the US, you mean Freshfields, as I know that Clifford Chance, Allen and Overy, and Linklaters are not looking to increase their US presence any time soon.

I received an offer from Freshfields, and I'm certainly not taking it. First, I know from people who work *at* the firm, that the quality of work product is in no way comparable to that by other NYC heavyweights; I take this as a reflection of their training program, which doesn't even match the sort of support and training Davis Polk would offer you. Second, I'm worried about the quality of their associates. The associates, during my interview, asked questions that were completely dumb, and borderline illegal. I wouldn't have been too startled by this, if the partner who later interviewed me hadn't also been a complete asshole. Third, I think the people leading their "expanding" litigation team are delusional. I think they're being too ambitious, that it's too risky being an associate in this group because you, quite literally, don't know how things are going to turn out in one or two years. I think, in this economy, it's better to be part of an established team. At the moment, Freshfields' team is immature, small, and doesn't even have the domestic client book that would bring it close to making it a top US lit shop (and I don't see them getting that book anytime soon).

In my opinion, it comes down to Davis Polk vs. DC. If the choice were up to me, I'd take Davis Polk in a heart beat. But if you turn them down for Freshfields, I'd have to smack you.

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NewHere
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Re: Picking a Firm

Postby NewHere » Thu Sep 24, 2009 11:35 am

In this economy, you don't "pick" you just take whatever you can get.


Did you even read the OP?

Apparently OP has four options. Surely he has not only a right, but an obligation to pick, as he can't take all four.

Anonymous User
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Re: Picking a Firm

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 24, 2009 11:41 am

My decision last year came down to Freshfields vs. DPW. I found it a very hard decision to make, especially because the people at Freshfields were great, and seemed very happy about their job.

One thing that helped me decide, and which may be relevant to your other options, too, is something a Career Services person told me: if a company has to cut jobs, they are more likely to do it at offices other than their headquarters. It may not be a conscious decision, but a manager (or group of partners) will know people in his own office better, and will have a relatively easier time laying off people he doesn't know.

DPW gives great government opportunities, by the way. It sends a lot of associates and partners back and forth to the government in DC.

As for your NY V20 option: further information is necessary, as stated above. Not every V20 is alike.

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M51
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Re: Picking a Firm

Postby M51 » Thu Sep 24, 2009 12:00 pm

DPW regularly has people leaving for prestigious govt positions (then often returning to DPW after it's over). Have you voiced your concerns to recruiting? They have more info than we do. If you really want the govt connections, a DC firm may be better, but it's far from difficult to get there from DPW. Particularly if you're undecided leaning corporate, DPW will offer better/more choices and exit opportunities in corporate.

I don't know why the NY V20 is still on that list since you gave no reasons for why you liked it. And expansion may sound exciting, but it's the partners who make all the decisions and control the culture anyway, so I'm not really sure what extra "opportunities" there will be in the UK situation.

Have you asked the most important question yet: Which firm do you like more?
If you liked them all, I would go with DPW.

mr.undroppable
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Re: Picking a Firm

Postby mr.undroppable » Thu Sep 24, 2009 12:11 pm

M51 wrote:I don't know why the NY V20 is still on that list since you gave no reasons for why you liked it.


Depending on what you want to do there are several V20's you can reasonably pick over DPW. Don't let vault rankings make your decisions as they have serious flaws. Although, if you're just generally interested in corporate with an eye towards government exit options later, it doesn't sound like you have a better choice than DPW unless you hated the environment there or something.

Anonymous User
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Re: Picking a Firm

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 24, 2009 7:00 pm

Thanks all for the advice. I'm going to meet with DPW again and hope that solidifies the deal!

Anonymous User
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Re: Picking a Firm

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Oct 13, 2009 9:51 am

What happened? Did you decide on DPW?




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