White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

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Adjudicator
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby Adjudicator » Wed Feb 16, 2011 8:47 pm

MTal wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:
MTal wrote:No, you get paid for BRINGING IN CLIENTS! Which only in part depends on the quality of your service.

Don't you actually get paid, for, you know, doing the work those clients are paying you to do?


Ideally that would be the case, but in the real world it isn't. You could be a brilliant aspy type lawyer and have all the relevant statutes and and rules memorized with the ability to recall them at a moments notice. Howevever, if you can't convince potential to clients to bring in business and then manage those relationships well once they do come in, all that knowledge you have isn't worth anything. Clients will choose to go with the dumber lawyer who is confident and outgoing than a brilliant aspy type lawyer who doesn't inspire confidence in himself with others.


Are we talking about Boston Legal now?

--ImageRemoved--

RPK34
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby RPK34 » Wed Feb 16, 2011 9:04 pm

vanwinkle wrote:
Last year, the American Bar Association set up a commission to study the recession's impact on the legal profession. Its chair, Allan J. Tanenbaum, says that cost pressures on law firms pre-dated the economy's downturn. But the pressures came to the fore, he says, when the 2008 law school graduate class suffered from 80% unemployment.

How is this line from the article not the actual focus of debate here?


That can't possibly be true, is it?

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California Babe
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby California Babe » Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:10 pm

MTal wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:
MTal wrote:No, you get paid for BRINGING IN CLIENTS! Which only in part depends on the quality of your service.

Don't you actually get paid, for, you know, doing the work those clients are paying you to do?


Ideally that would be the case, but in the real world it isn't. You could be a brilliant aspy type lawyer and have all the relevant statutes and and rules memorized with the ability to recall them at a moments notice. Howevever, if you can't convince potential to clients to bring in business and then manage those relationships well once they do come in, all that knowledge you have isn't worth anything. Clients will choose to go with the dumber lawyer who is confident and outgoing than a brilliant aspy type lawyer who doesn't inspire confidence in himself with others.


This is life, it isn't the law. People choose their family physician that they like and trust, not the one with the best credentials. People will take their car to same mechanic over and over if they feel like he treats them right, despite the fact that they keep having to take their car there for the same problem... over and over.

Being successful in life is about the right combination of talent/smarts/training and people skills. There is nothing shocking about this, nor is it exceptional for the legal field.

bigben
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby bigben » Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:23 pm

Something tells me OP has never, and probably will never, set foot in a large or mid-size law firm.

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MTal
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby MTal » Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:40 pm

bigben wrote:Something tells me OP has never, and probably will never, set foot in a large or mid-size law firm.


True, however, I do work for a large discount brokerage firm as a broker.

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KingRajesh
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby KingRajesh » Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:48 pm

RPK34 wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:
Last year, the American Bar Association set up a commission to study the recession's impact on the legal profession. Its chair, Allan J. Tanenbaum, says that cost pressures on law firms pre-dated the economy's downturn. But the pressures came to the fore, he says, when the 2008 law school graduate class suffered from 80% unemployment.

How is this line from the article not the actual focus of debate here?


That can't possibly be true, is it?


I don't think it can...

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MTal
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby MTal » Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:52 pm

KingRajesh wrote:
RPK34 wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:
Last year, the American Bar Association set up a commission to study the recession's impact on the legal profession. Its chair, Allan J. Tanenbaum, says that cost pressures on law firms pre-dated the economy's downturn. But the pressures came to the fore, he says, when the 2008 law school graduate class suffered from 80% unemployment.

How is this line from the article not the actual focus of debate here?


That can't possibly be true, is it?


I don't think it can...


Not in the fairytale gumdrop world of TLS, no way!

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Verity
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby Verity » Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:53 pm

MTal wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:
MTal wrote:No, you get paid for BRINGING IN CLIENTS! Which only in part depends on the quality of your service.

Don't you actually get paid, for, you know, doing the work those clients are paying you to do?


Ideally that would be the case, but in the real world it isn't. You could be a brilliant aspy type lawyer and have all the relevant statutes and and rules memorized with the ability to recall them at a moments notice. Howevever, if you can't convince potential to clients to bring in business and then manage those relationships well once they do come in, all that knowledge you have isn't worth anything. Clients will choose to go with the dumber lawyer who is confident and outgoing than a brilliant aspy type lawyer who doesn't inspire confidence in himself with others.



Your problem is overstatement. You are worth the service you provide as long as they pay you. Your longevity, though, and your ability to eventually make partner is in part based on your salesmanship.

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Verity
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby Verity » Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:55 pm

KingRajesh wrote:
RPK34 wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:
Last year, the American Bar Association set up a commission to study the recession's impact on the legal profession. Its chair, Allan J. Tanenbaum, says that cost pressures on law firms pre-dated the economy's downturn. But the pressures came to the fore, he says, when the 2008 law school graduate class suffered from 80% unemployment.

How is this line from the article not the actual focus of debate here?


That can't possibly be true, is it?


I don't think it can...



Maybe. There are a lot of no-name, shitty law schools out there. It is dubious, though. I'd like to see a source.

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AreJay711
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby AreJay711 » Wed Feb 16, 2011 11:57 pm

California Babe wrote:
MTal wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:
MTal wrote:No, you get paid for BRINGING IN CLIENTS! Which only in part depends on the quality of your service.

Don't you actually get paid, for, you know, doing the work those clients are paying you to do?


Ideally that would be the case, but in the real world it isn't. You could be a brilliant aspy type lawyer and have all the relevant statutes and and rules memorized with the ability to recall them at a moments notice. Howevever, if you can't convince potential to clients to bring in business and then manage those relationships well once they do come in, all that knowledge you have isn't worth anything. Clients will choose to go with the dumber lawyer who is confident and outgoing than a brilliant aspy type lawyer who doesn't inspire confidence in himself with others.


This is life, it isn't the law. People choose their family physician that they like and trust, not the one with the best credentials. People will take their car to same mechanic over and over if they feel like he treats them right, despite the fact that they keep having to take their car there for the same problem... over and over.

Being successful in life is about the right combination of talent/smarts/training and people skills. There is nothing shocking about this, nor is it exceptional for the legal field.


Idk, everyone needs the face and grunts. I always thought that this was what separated people who made partner or not but I don't have a problem with the distinction being made sooner. At the same time, firms still need to attract and retain grunts.

Renzo
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby Renzo » Thu Feb 17, 2011 12:03 am

I'll bet lawyers in Israel have it better.

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MrPapagiorgio
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby MrPapagiorgio » Thu Feb 17, 2011 12:12 am

Renzo wrote:I'll bet lawyers in Israel have it better.


:shock:

dooood
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby dooood » Thu Feb 17, 2011 12:27 am

-
Last edited by dooood on Sat Apr 23, 2011 5:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

HBK
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby HBK » Thu Feb 17, 2011 12:34 am

dooood wrote:
MTal wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:
MTal wrote:No, you get paid for BRINGING IN CLIENTS! Which only in part depends on the quality of your service.

Don't you actually get paid, for, you know, doing the work those clients are paying you to do?


Ideally that would be the case, but in the real world it isn't. You could be a brilliant aspy type lawyer and have all the relevant statutes and and rules memorized with the ability to recall them at a moments notice. Howevever, if you can't convince potential to clients to bring in business and then manage those relationships well once they do come in, all that knowledge you have isn't worth anything. Clients will choose to go with the dumber lawyer who is confident and outgoing than a brilliant aspy type lawyer who doesn't inspire confidence in himself with others.


what is an "aspy type" lawyer exactly


I think he's trying to say an attorney who has Aspergers. Mtal probably thinks that describes him because of all of his social missteps and inability to connect to law firm hiring managers on a social level.

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pinkzeppelin
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby pinkzeppelin » Thu Feb 17, 2011 3:13 am

MTal wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:
MTal wrote:No, you get paid for BRINGING IN CLIENTS! Which only in part depends on the quality of your service.

Don't you actually get paid, for, you know, doing the work those clients are paying you to do?


Ideally that would be the case, but in the real world it isn't. You could be a brilliant aspy type lawyer and have all the relevant statutes and and rules memorized with the ability to recall them at a moments notice. Howevever, if you can't convince potential to clients to bring in business and then manage those relationships well once they do come in, all that knowledge you have isn't worth anything. Clients will choose to go with the dumber lawyer who is confident and outgoing than a brilliant aspy type lawyer who doesn't inspire confidence in himself with others.


Um, this sounds like every job in the history of the world. You have to convince someone that you're good, whether it's an employer or clients.

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Adjudicator
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby Adjudicator » Thu Feb 17, 2011 3:16 am

A broker is calling lawyers "glorified salesmen?"

The irony! Did anybody else catch that?

Renzo
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby Renzo » Thu Feb 17, 2011 3:17 am

Adjudicator wrote:A broker is calling lawyers "glorified salesmen?"

The irony! Did anybody else catch that?

I guess it's ok to be an un-glorified salesman?

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Nogameisfair
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby Nogameisfair » Thu Feb 17, 2011 10:22 am

Renzo wrote:
Adjudicator wrote:A broker is calling lawyers "glorified salesmen?"

The irony! Did anybody else catch that?

I guess it's ok to be an un-glorified salesman?


Broker?! How about when I come down to his office and lecture on the principles of selling junk to grandma, he can come to my office to tell me how I'm a glorified salesman? Regardless, I'd rather be a glorified salesman than just a salesman. How many movies glorify brokers?

pasteurizedmilk
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby pasteurizedmilk » Thu Feb 17, 2011 2:13 pm

MTal wrote:
Adjudicator wrote:
MTal wrote:I had no idea it was impossible to sell a service...thanks for the enlightenment.


But apparently you can provide a service while also being nothing more than a glorified salesman?


Of course you can, but that's not what the vast majority of law is about. You have to bring in clients, otherwise you are worthless to a firm.

lolwut

BeenDidThat
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby BeenDidThat » Sat Feb 19, 2011 2:02 pm

MTal wrote:In other words, you're worth only what you bring in.


...

MTal wrote:Ideally that would be the case, but in the real world it isn't. You could be a brilliant aspy type lawyer and have all the relevant statutes and and rules memorized with the ability to recall them at a moments notice. Howevever, if you can't convince potential to clients to bring in business and then manage those relationships well once they do come in, all that knowledge you have isn't worth anything. Clients will choose to go with the dumber lawyer who is confident and outgoing than a brilliant aspy type lawyer who doesn't inspire confidence in himself with others.


You're trying to pull a slick one here, and I don't like it one bit. Yes, ability to bring in clients matters. Charisma matters. Communication skills matter.

But legal ability matters too. You're setting up this silly dichotomy between the "brilliant aspy type" lawyer and the "dumber lawyer who is confident".

What about the pretty smart lawyer who also is reasonably sociable?

Your first post is disingenuous in the extreme. You are unequivocally not only what you bring in. You are also what you retain. And a huge part of retention is (gasp!) ability as an attorney. Now, you may try to argue around this by saying that that is what you meant, and then fold all ability into the one package that then depends on confidence and outgoing-nature in order to sell. And of course that's true to some extent. But ability to sell yourself is not a sufficient condition to be a good lawyer. You have to be able to sell yourself reasonably well, but legal ability and the ability to work hard is also a huge component.

Last thought: why are you implicitly denigrating the sales part of law? Do you, perchance, consider yourself a "brilliant aspy type"? That would clear a lot of things up.

InLikeFlint
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby InLikeFlint » Sat Feb 19, 2011 3:22 pm

BeenDidThat wrote:
MTal wrote:In other words, you're worth only what you bring in.


...

MTal wrote:Ideally that would be the case, but in the real world it isn't. You could be a brilliant aspy type lawyer and have all the relevant statutes and and rules memorized with the ability to recall them at a moments notice. Howevever, if you can't convince potential to clients to bring in business and then manage those relationships well once they do come in, all that knowledge you have isn't worth anything. Clients will choose to go with the dumber lawyer who is confident and outgoing than a brilliant aspy type lawyer who doesn't inspire confidence in himself with others.


You're trying to pull a slick one here, and I don't like it one bit. Yes, ability to bring in clients matters. Charisma matters. Communication skills matter.

But legal ability matters too. You're setting up this silly dichotomy between the "brilliant aspy type" lawyer and the "dumber lawyer who is confident".

What about the pretty smart lawyer who also is reasonably sociable?

Your first post is disingenuous in the extreme. You are unequivocally not only what you bring in. You are also what you retain. And a huge part of retention is (gasp!) ability as an attorney. Now, you may try to argue around this by saying that that is what you meant, and then fold all ability into the one package that then depends on confidence and outgoing-nature in order to sell. And of course that's true to some extent. But ability to sell yourself is not a sufficient condition to be a good lawyer. You have to be able to sell yourself reasonably well, but legal ability and the ability to work hard is also a huge component.

Last thought: why are you implicitly denigrating the sales part of law? Do you, perchance, consider yourself a "brilliant aspy type"? That would clear a lot of things up.


I think you may have gotten to the bottom of this one.

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YourCaptain
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby YourCaptain » Sat Feb 19, 2011 3:30 pm

KingRajesh wrote:
RPK34 wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:
Last year, the American Bar Association set up a commission to study the recession's impact on the legal profession. Its chair, Allan J. Tanenbaum, says that cost pressures on law firms pre-dated the economy's downturn. But the pressures came to the fore, he says, when the 2008 law school graduate class suffered from 80% unemployment.

How is this line from the article not the actual focus of debate here?


That can't possibly be true, is it?


I don't think it can...




Well, when Cooley pumps out 4,000 LS a year and Yale pumps out 180, it's not entirely difficult to see how that figure works.

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Drake014
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby Drake014 » Sat Feb 19, 2011 3:38 pm

MTal wrote:
Adjudicator wrote:
MTal wrote:I had no idea it was impossible to sell a service...thanks for the enlightenment.


But apparently you can provide a service while also being nothing more than a glorified salesman?


Of course you can, but that's not what the vast majority of law is about. You have to bring in clients, otherwise you are worthless to a firm.


That's odd, I know a lot of associates and no one expects them to bring in clients.

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nealric
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby nealric » Sat Feb 19, 2011 3:50 pm

In other words, you're worth only what you bring in. Many of you don't realize that being a lawyer is many times nothing more than a glorified sales job. Nobody cares if you went to Yale if you don't have any, or can't bring in any clients.


*actually works in biglaw*

#1: The lockstep raises you are talking about are for associates. Junior and mid-level associates almost never bring in business and are not expected to. Senior associates up for partner (who need to be doing business development) are a tiny percentage of those covered by the elimination of lockstep.

#2: The firms mentioned in the article are not "white shoe" firms. All the white shoe firms are still on lockstep.

#3: If you are truly a brilliant lawyer, you will have no trouble bringing in clients unless you go out of your way to avoid brining them in. Reputation spreads.

#4: Related to #3. The reason why it makes sense to go to Yale is because it allows you to get the experience that is most in demand by clients. Someone who goes to Yale and works for Wachtell will be exposed to the highest-end legal work on a daily basis. Down the road, when that person is doing business development, they can talk about all the high-end experience they have. Nine times out of ten, a client is going to take someone with blue-chip experience and average personality over a slick salesperson with a mediocre background.

#5: The calculation of "merit" under merit pay systems for associates is almost always heavily weighted towards hours billed.

pasteurizedmilk
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Re: White shoe firms dumping lockstep raises

Postby pasteurizedmilk » Sat Feb 19, 2011 10:43 pm

Drake014 wrote:
MTal wrote:
Adjudicator wrote:
MTal wrote:I had no idea it was impossible to sell a service...thanks for the enlightenment.


But apparently you can provide a service while also being nothing more than a glorified salesman?


Of course you can, but that's not what the vast majority of law is about. You have to bring in clients, otherwise you are worthless to a firm.


That's odd, I know a lot of associates and no one expects them to bring in clients.

yeah MTal is clueless.




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