Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

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eric922
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Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby eric922 » Tue Jan 08, 2013 6:08 pm

I know this is a very subjective question to answer,but I was just curious if I could get some opinions on this from people who have worked in the environment. I know biglaw is a lot of work around 80 or more hours a week at times and the environment can be stressful. All of that being said, do or did you all find the work enjoyable or satisfying? I'm asking because I've heard tons of horror stories about how awful working in large law firms is, but at the same time the complex cases they handle seem very interesting to me, especially at a litigation firm like Quinn Emanuel. I'm still an OL so there's a chance I may not even have the opportunity to work in biglaw, but I'm interested in learning more about in case I do get that chance.

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ph14
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby ph14 » Tue Jan 08, 2013 6:10 pm

eric922 wrote:I know this is a very subjective question to answer,but I was just curious if I could get some opinions on this from people who have worked in the environment. I know biglaw is a lot of work around 80 or more hours a week at times and the environment can be stressful. All of that being said, do or did you all find the work enjoyable or satisfying? I'm asking because I've heard tons of horror stories about how awful working in large law firms is, but at the same time the complex cases they handle seem very interesting to me, especially at a litigation firm like Quinn Emanuel. I'm still an OL so there's a chance I may not even have the opportunity to work in biglaw, but I'm interested in learning more about in case I do get that chance.


This is almost entirely a subjective question. Do you find the material intrinsically interesting? Then you might. Most other people wouldn't find it "enjoyable." Then again, most jobs aren't necessarily "enjoyable," they are jobs.

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bk1
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby bk1 » Tue Jan 08, 2013 6:10 pm

ph14 wrote:Then again, most jobs aren't necessarily "enjoyable," they are jobs.

+1

rad lulz
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby rad lulz » Tue Jan 08, 2013 6:22 pm

Paying off your debt in a timely manner is enjoyable.

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ExBiglawAssociate
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby ExBiglawAssociate » Tue Jan 08, 2013 6:23 pm

eric922 wrote:I know this is a very subjective question to answer,but I was just curious if I could get some opinions on this from people who have worked in the environment. I know biglaw is a lot of work around 80 or more hours a week at times and the environment can be stressful. All of that being said, do or did you all find the work enjoyable or satisfying? I'm asking because I've heard tons of horror stories about how awful working in large law firms is, but at the same time the complex cases they handle seem very interesting to me, especially at a litigation firm like Quinn Emanuel. I'm still an OL so there's a chance I may not even have the opportunity to work in biglaw, but I'm interested in learning more about in case I do get that chance.


Working at Quinn Emanuel is like being a slave on a large Roman galley.

Do you enjoy having no time for a social life? If so, you're the perfect fit!

needajob
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby needajob » Tue Jan 08, 2013 6:43 pm

I'm 100% on board with radlulz... I'll be a slave on a Roman galley with no social 12 times out of 10 if it means chipping away at loan debt.

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bk1
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby bk1 » Tue Jan 08, 2013 6:45 pm

Moved to appropriate forum. Reminder OP: the employment forum is not for 0Ls.

needajob wrote:I'm 100% on board with radlulz... I'll be a slave on a Roman galley with no social 12 times out of 10 if it means chipping away at loan debt.

True, but this matters for 0Ls considering sticker at a school which gives a decent shot at biglaw (whether you want to call that T14 or HYS, it's not important to this point). If biglaw isn't worth doing then it's stupid to take out the debt.

eric922
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby eric922 » Tue Jan 08, 2013 6:49 pm

bk1 wrote:Moved to appropriate forum. Reminder OP: the employment forum is not for 0Ls.

needajob wrote:I'm 100% on board with radlulz... I'll be a slave on a Roman galley with no social 12 times out of 10 if it means chipping away at loan debt.

True, but this matters for 0Ls considering sticker at a school which gives a decent shot at biglaw (whether you want to call that T14 or HYS, it's not important to this point). If biglaw isn't worth doing then it's stupid to take out the debt.

That is my main reason for this thread. I've heard stories of a lot of people going into biglaw as a way to pay off their debt, but if biglaw is as horrible as some make it out to be I have to ask if the debt is worth it in the first place. Also, sorry for posting in the wrong forum, I'll be sure to keep that straight in the future.

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bk1
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby bk1 » Tue Jan 08, 2013 6:53 pm

eric922 wrote:That is my main reason for this thread. I've heard stories of a lot of people going into biglaw as a way to pay off their debt, but if biglaw is as horrible as some make it out to be I have to ask if the debt is worth it in the first place. Also, sorry for posting in the wrong forum, I'll be sure to keep that straight in the future.

No problem (remember there are announcements at the top of each forum that have the posting rules for that forum). I think a second thing to consider is whether the resume benefits of biglaw (for post-biglaw employment) are worth suffering through biglaw. For example, working in biglaw can make it possible to get a job in-house at a large corporation or as a government lawyer at an agency.

TheGreatFish
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby TheGreatFish » Wed Jan 09, 2013 3:33 am

ph14 wrote:This is almost entirely a subjective question.


I'll echo this statement. I know attorneys who loved working in big law and stuck with it for 20+ years. I also know attorneys who quit after doing it for 1 year. I even know one attorney who quit after 6 months.

I would say most people are only doing it for the paycheck, but some attorneys actually enjoy it.

alex.feuerman
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby alex.feuerman » Thu Jan 10, 2013 2:20 pm

eric922 wrote:I know this is a very subjective question to answer,but I was just curious if I could get some opinions on this from people who have worked in the environment. I know biglaw is a lot of work around 80 or more hours a week at times and the environment can be stressful. All of that being said, do or did you all find the work enjoyable or satisfying? I'm asking because I've heard tons of horror stories about how awful working in large law firms is, but at the same time the complex cases they handle seem very interesting to me, especially at a litigation firm like Quinn Emanuel. I'm still an OL so there's a chance I may not even have the opportunity to work in biglaw, but I'm interested in learning more about in case I do get that chance.


Obviously this is prob not the case at all firms. This article made me deeply scared
--LinkRemoved--

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A. Nony Mouse
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Jan 10, 2013 2:28 pm

alex.feuerman wrote:
eric922 wrote:I know this is a very subjective question to answer,but I was just curious if I could get some opinions on this from people who have worked in the environment. I know biglaw is a lot of work around 80 or more hours a week at times and the environment can be stressful. All of that being said, do or did you all find the work enjoyable or satisfying? I'm asking because I've heard tons of horror stories about how awful working in large law firms is, but at the same time the complex cases they handle seem very interesting to me, especially at a litigation firm like Quinn Emanuel. I'm still an OL so there's a chance I may not even have the opportunity to work in biglaw, but I'm interested in learning more about in case I do get that chance.


Obviously this is prob not the case at all firms. This article made me deeply scared
--LinkRemoved--

God, I loathe the People's Therapist. On the one hand, I'm sure he was miserable working biglaw, many people are miserable working biglaw, and many biglaw firms are objectively miserable places to work. But it also seems to me that he had shockingly little self-awareness not realize that he is a terrible fit for biglaw. (His portrayal of the real estate ogre is exceedingly unpleasant but if I were sitting down for a night's work I wouldn't want my co-worker blathering about their passions, either.) Some parts of his message are valuable, but the messenger is so annoying, I'm not sure he's really helping his cause.

(Caveat: I don't work in biglaw. Never intended to. So I can't pretend to know its true awfulness firsthand, which I don't mean to minimize. I just hate that particular article.)

spondee
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby spondee » Thu Jan 10, 2013 3:36 pm

I'm a big law first year and mostly like the work. There are boring tasks, but overall it's interesting and varied. Pro bono stuff is fun. And it does feel like great training; I learn so much that was never even hinted at in law school.

But, yeah, the hours suck. And big law isn't really structured to take advantage, or develop, management skills, so dealing with superiors can be unpleasant. However, my limited experiences are NOTHING like the People's Therapist's.

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nealric
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby nealric » Thu Jan 10, 2013 5:37 pm

I hear people enjoy DLA Piper.

But seriously, I am a 3rd year and generally enjoy it.

BeenDidThat
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby BeenDidThat » Thu Jan 10, 2013 5:46 pm

ph14 wrote:
eric922 wrote:I know this is a very subjective question to answer,but I was just curious if I could get some opinions on this from people who have worked in the environment. I know biglaw is a lot of work around 80 or more hours a week at times and the environment can be stressful. All of that being said, do or did you all find the work enjoyable or satisfying? I'm asking because I've heard tons of horror stories about how awful working in large law firms is, but at the same time the complex cases they handle seem very interesting to me, especially at a litigation firm like Quinn Emanuel. I'm still an OL so there's a chance I may not even have the opportunity to work in biglaw, but I'm interested in learning more about in case I do get that chance.


This is almost entirely a subjective question. Do you find the material intrinsically interesting? Then you might. Most other people wouldn't find it "enjoyable." Then again, most jobs aren't necessarily "enjoyable," they are jobs.


If you read his post, not just the title, you would note that he asked "do or did you all find the work enjoyable or satisfying?"

I have not worked in biglaw as a full associate, though I have as an SA. I understand that the hours are much worse and the stress much more real for associates. I enjoyed my time as an SA, and I think I will enjoy being an associate relative to how much I would enjoy doing other jobs. I think most of the associates I worked with would agree.

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cinephile
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby cinephile » Thu Jan 10, 2013 7:22 pm

I had a fun interview once. It wasn't for a biglaw job, but it was for a legal job that my interviewer assured me would be unpleasant and promised me that I wouldn't like it here. But I wanted the job, so I agreed with her and said no, this would not make me happy and I realize that, but I want the job anyway for the experience. We argued for almost an hour even though my interview was only supposed to be 20 minutes. I thought I had blown it, but about a week later I received an email telling me I was hired. So . . . I'm not sure what the point of this story was. Maybe that a lot of things are unenjoyable, but you do it anyway because you need work experience or you need the money. And maybe sometimes the interviewer gets that and appreciates that you recognize that you won't like your job.

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Br3v
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby Br3v » Thu Jan 10, 2013 7:24 pm

cinephile wrote:I had a fun interview once. It wasn't for a biglaw job, but it was for a legal job that my interviewer assured me would be unpleasant and promised me that I wouldn't like it here. But I wanted the job, so I agreed with her and said no, this would not make me happy and I realize that, but I want the job anyway for the experience. We argued for almost an hour even though my interview was only supposed to be 20 minutes. I thought I had blown it, but about a week later I received an email telling me I was hired. So . . . I'm not sure what the point of this story was. Maybe that a lot of things are unenjoyable, but you do it anyway because you need work experience or you need the money. And maybe sometimes the interviewer gets that and appreciates that you recognize that you won't like your job.


Lol for some reason I don't think I'll forget reading this. Oddly cool story.

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cinephile
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby cinephile » Thu Jan 10, 2013 7:25 pm

Br3v wrote:
cinephile wrote:I had a fun interview once. It wasn't for a biglaw job, but it was for a legal job that my interviewer assured me would be unpleasant and promised me that I wouldn't like it here. But I wanted the job, so I agreed with her and said no, this would not make me happy and I realize that, but I want the job anyway for the experience. We argued for almost an hour even though my interview was only supposed to be 20 minutes. I thought I had blown it, but about a week later I received an email telling me I was hired. So . . . I'm not sure what the point of this story was. Maybe that a lot of things are unenjoyable, but you do it anyway because you need work experience or you need the money. And maybe sometimes the interviewer gets that and appreciates that you recognize that you won't like your job.


Lol for some reason I don't think I'll forget reading this. Oddly cool story.


I haven't started the job yet (still a 2L), so I'm not sure how miserable it'll be. Maybe I should've taken her advice.

TheGreatFish
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby TheGreatFish » Tue Jan 15, 2013 7:19 am

cinephile wrote:I haven't started the job yet (still a 2L), so I'm not sure how miserable it'll be. Maybe I should've taken her advice.


I had a remarkably similar experience. The interviewer was right. I did hate it.

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dingbat
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby dingbat » Tue Jan 15, 2013 9:52 am

cinephile wrote:I had a fun interview once. It wasn't for a biglaw job, but it was for a legal job that my interviewer assured me would be unpleasant and promised me that I wouldn't like it here. But I wanted the job, so I agreed with her and said no, this would not make me happy and I realize that, but I want the job anyway for the experience. We argued for almost an hour even though my interview was only supposed to be 20 minutes. I thought I had blown it, but about a week later I received an email telling me I was hired. So . . . I'm not sure what the point of this story was. Maybe that a lot of things are unenjoyable, but you do it anyway because you need work experience or you need the money. And maybe sometimes the interviewer gets that and appreciates that you recognize that you won't like your job.

I had a job interview in a completely unrelated field that went the same way. The guy who interviewed me is now CEO

KingsCup
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Re: Is working in biglaw enjoyable?

Postby KingsCup » Tue Jan 15, 2013 1:08 pm

dingbat wrote:
cinephile wrote:I had a fun interview once. It wasn't for a biglaw job, but it was for a legal job that my interviewer assured me would be unpleasant and promised me that I wouldn't like it here. But I wanted the job, so I agreed with her and said no, this would not make me happy and I realize that, but I want the job anyway for the experience. We argued for almost an hour even though my interview was only supposed to be 20 minutes. I thought I had blown it, but about a week later I received an email telling me I was hired. So . . . I'm not sure what the point of this story was. Maybe that a lot of things are unenjoyable, but you do it anyway because you need work experience or you need the money. And maybe sometimes the interviewer gets that and appreciates that you recognize that you won't like your job.

I had a job interview in a completely unrelated field that went the same way. The guy who interviewed me is now CEO


probably not hating it as much now




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