Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13 Forum

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Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Sat Sep 04, 2021 8:41 pm

Can we get people from DPW to journal their return to office? Interested in knowing their experiences, pressures they face, if people are coming down with COVID etc...


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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Sep 06, 2021 10:41 pm

I'll try to do if I remember.

Day 0, had to buy new clothes. Apparently the dress code is no longer business casual but I wasn't paying attention at the town hall so I don't know exactly what it is right now (smart casual?). I decided I'll just look fresh for when I inevitably go out drinking after work. I'm not a junior so I dont really care what people think at the office

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 07, 2021 8:55 pm

Davis Polk is a steaming turd.

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 07, 2021 9:16 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 07, 2021 8:55 pm
Davis Polk is a steaming turd.
Lawl

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2021 1:49 pm

So what is everybody’s plan if the firm is requiring you to “return to the office regularly,” but with no specified number of days? Does that mean that everyone will shrug it off and ignore RTO?

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2021 3:31 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Wed Sep 08, 2021 1:49 pm
So what is everybody’s plan if the firm is requiring you to “return to the office regularly,” but with no specified number of days? Does that mean that everyone will shrug it off and ignore RTO?

DPW anon from above.

No definitely not because there are some (many?) lawyers who want to return to office. And if they are 'in charge' then their team will also be there. My guess is anywhere between 2-4 days a week for most people depending on the project and frequency of calls/meetings.

Also if you think that some juniors aren't going to be clamoring to return to office to look good and not get yelled at (or disapprovingly spoken to, depending) then you don't know enough gunners.

There are multiple reasons to show up at the office. It only takes one to get someone to go for a couple days here and there when it's already expected of you.

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Thu Sep 09, 2021 6:33 pm

Really enjoying the periodic emails we are now getting in the style of:

[Announcement of some development that makes returning to the office even more pointless.] Nonetheless, we look forward to you returning on September 13...

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Thu Sep 09, 2021 6:39 pm

Can you elaborate on the updates? Like mandatory masking etc?

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Sat Sep 11, 2021 10:34 am

Day 0.1: Firmwide morale raising welcome back to the office event cancelled (probably due to low morale).

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Mon Sep 13, 2021 2:28 pm

bump, inquiring minds want to know how day 1 is going

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:42 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Sat Sep 11, 2021 10:34 am
Day 0.1: Firmwide morale raising welcome back to the office event cancelled (probably due to low morale).
The meetings will continue until morale improves.

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 14, 2021 8:37 pm

Day 1: Everyone I saw was in business casual (fucking gunners), saw one guy in the lobby with untucked shirt, he looked lost.

75ish% of the lawyers on my floor were present. Everyone wearing a mask in the halls/meetings, but occasionally removing it to drink coffee or say hello (lol). All of the associates on my floor showed up later than the partners that came in (not sure if that was typical before?). Between 9:30 and 10.

Day 2: Saw multiple partners in shorts. Not sure who they were but it seems like a war is brewing between casual and business casual. I know my allegiances. Multiple people left the office 'early', before 6pm. More associates stayed home today than the day before. Probably closer to 50% attendance for associates. The partners had the same attendance I beleive. I haven't heard on either day any complaints or gossip about the lawyers who worked from home or wore less than business casual.

Many jokes were made about not knowing whether we had to wear masks in meetings/group calls etc. The undertones of disappointment were clear in each joke.

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:08 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 8:37 pm
Day 1: Everyone I saw was in business casual (fucking gunners), saw one guy in the lobby with untucked shirt, he looked lost.

75ish% of the lawyers on my floor were present. Everyone wearing a mask in the halls/meetings, but occasionally removing it to drink coffee or say hello (lol). All of the associates on my floor showed up later than the partners that came in (not sure if that was typical before?). Between 9:30 and 10.

Day 2: Saw multiple partners in shorts. Not sure who they were but it seems like a war is brewing between casual and business casual. I know my allegiances. Multiple people left the office 'early', before 6pm. More associates stayed home today than the day before. Probably closer to 50% attendance for associates. The partners had the same attendance I beleive. I haven't heard on either day any complaints or gossip about the lawyers who worked from home or wore less than business casual.

Many jokes were made about not knowing whether we had to wear masks in meetings/group calls etc. The undertones of disappointment were clear in each joke.
DPW must have a fair number of juniors in shared offices — how does masking work there?

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:22 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:08 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 8:37 pm
Day 1: Everyone I saw was in business casual (fucking gunners), saw one guy in the lobby with untucked shirt, he looked lost.

75ish% of the lawyers on my floor were present. Everyone wearing a mask in the halls/meetings, but occasionally removing it to drink coffee or say hello (lol). All of the associates on my floor showed up later than the partners that came in (not sure if that was typical before?). Between 9:30 and 10.

Day 2: Saw multiple partners in shorts. Not sure who they were but it seems like a war is brewing between casual and business casual. I know my allegiances. Multiple people left the office 'early', before 6pm. More associates stayed home today than the day before. Probably closer to 50% attendance for associates. The partners had the same attendance I beleive. I haven't heard on either day any complaints or gossip about the lawyers who worked from home or wore less than business casual.

Many jokes were made about not knowing whether we had to wear masks in meetings/group calls etc. The undertones of disappointment were clear in each joke.
DPW must have a fair number of juniors in shared offices — how does masking work there?
I think the written rule they sent was something like mask isn't *required* unless there are 4+ people in a room. But I actually don't know if people are actually following these instructions (I'm not a junior)

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:37 pm

Is this all just to please Eric Grossman?

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:46 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:37 pm
Is this all just to please Eric Grossman?
Honestly (and I'm completely guessing) I think that management thinks that the vaccines will make everyone safe. So by forcing everyone to get vaccinated (which is another discussion I guess) and to come in the office, they are again "leading the market" and will be thought of positively when all the other firms eventually follow along if we have 0 covid cases (read: deaths).

I also think they are trying to approach it in a common-sense way. They know that a large number of us are perfectly fine going to bars and indoor restaurants so why not also come to the office?

And it really is forcing you to get vaccinated. They told us the key card won't work if you don't get vacc'd up.

I'm mostly concerned for the older folks. I woulda just retired if I was 55+, it aint worth it (but then again they make 10x more than I do so wtf do I know)

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:34 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:46 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:37 pm
Is this all just to please Eric Grossman?
Honestly (and I'm completely guessing) I think that management thinks that the vaccines will make everyone safe. So by forcing everyone to get vaccinated (which is another discussion I guess) and to come in the office, they are again "leading the market" and will be thought of positively when all the other firms eventually follow along if we have 0 covid cases (read: deaths).

I also think they are trying to approach it in a common-sense way. They know that a large number of us are perfectly fine going to bars and indoor restaurants so why not also come to the office?

And it really is forcing you to get vaccinated. They told us the key card won't work if you don't get vacc'd up.

I'm mostly concerned for the older folks. I woulda just retired if I was 55+, it aint worth it (but then again they make 10x more than I do so wtf do I know)
Not ascribing those (management’s) views to you personally, but that all seems misguided.

Even if other firms are taking a look at what DPW is doing, and do eventually follow suit, that’s not the equivalent of “leading the market.” Leading the market implies that you are building goodwill. To say that you are “leading the market” by jumpstarting the end of WFH is like saying DPW could lead the market by reducing first year salary from $205k to $190k.

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Wed Sep 15, 2021 12:17 am

Im v pro WFH but DPW isn't wrong that the vaccinated can basically live a normal life again. The odds of getting sick w COVId as a vaccinated person are akin to the flu based on available data and the odds of hospitalization/death are EXTREMELY minuscule. No one in favor of more precautions for 90%+ vaccinated communities is willing to say what the end game is given COVID ain't going anywhere: is it masks forever indoors/no offices, business districts/social restrictions?

All to say I understand DPW's logic but would prefer it not happen.

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Wed Sep 15, 2021 10:07 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Wed Sep 15, 2021 12:17 am
Im v pro WFH but DPW isn't wrong that the vaccinated can basically live a normal life again. The odds of getting sick w COVId as a vaccinated person are akin to the flu based on available data and the odds of hospitalization/death are EXTREMELY minuscule. No one in favor of more precautions for 90%+ vaccinated communities is willing to say what the end game is given COVID ain't going anywhere: is it masks forever indoors/no offices, business districts/social restrictions?

All to say I understand DPW's logic but would prefer it not happen.
I think most people recognize that the risk of COVID exposure due to in-office attendance is pretty low. Most of us are going to restaurants/bars etc.

This is about WFH flexibility and not COVID fear. We just don't want to come to the office. It doesn't make sense for our job, and it's a huge waste of time in terms of getting ready and commuting. In an industry where time is everything - why would we want to squander the little time we have?

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Wed Sep 15, 2021 10:21 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Wed Sep 15, 2021 10:07 am
Anonymous User wrote:
Wed Sep 15, 2021 12:17 am
Im v pro WFH but DPW isn't wrong that the vaccinated can basically live a normal life again. The odds of getting sick w COVId as a vaccinated person are akin to the flu based on available data and the odds of hospitalization/death are EXTREMELY minuscule. No one in favor of more precautions for 90%+ vaccinated communities is willing to say what the end game is given COVID ain't going anywhere: is it masks forever indoors/no offices, business districts/social restrictions?

All to say I understand DPW's logic but would prefer it not happen.
I think most people recognize that the risk of COVID exposure due to in-office attendance is pretty low. Most of us are going to restaurants/bars etc.

This is about WFH flexibility and not COVID fear. We just don't want to come to the office. It doesn't make sense for our job, and it's a huge waste of time in terms of getting ready and commuting. In an industry where time is everything - why would we want to squander the little time we have?
Boomer partners will tell you it's about team building, which I personally think makes some sense. It's just that the added value of a "better" culture is outweighed by the significant QOL improvement of WFH.

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Wubbles » Wed Sep 15, 2021 10:23 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Wed Sep 15, 2021 12:17 am
Im v pro WFH but DPW isn't wrong that the vaccinated can basically live a normal life again. The odds of getting sick w COVId as a vaccinated person are akin to the flu based on available data and the odds of hospitalization/death are EXTREMELY minuscule. No one in favor of more precautions for 90%+ vaccinated communities is willing to say what the end game is given COVID ain't going anywhere: is it masks forever indoors/no offices, business districts/social restrictions?

All to say I understand DPW's logic but would prefer it not happen.
I think the big covid worry for many is their unvaccinated children

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Wed Sep 15, 2021 10:40 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:34 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:46 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:37 pm
Is this all just to please Eric Grossman?
Honestly (and I'm completely guessing) I think that management thinks that the vaccines will make everyone safe. So by forcing everyone to get vaccinated (which is another discussion I guess) and to come in the office, they are again "leading the market" and will be thought of positively when all the other firms eventually follow along if we have 0 covid cases (read: deaths).

I also think they are trying to approach it in a common-sense way. They know that a large number of us are perfectly fine going to bars and indoor restaurants so why not also come to the office?

And it really is forcing you to get vaccinated. They told us the key card won't work if you don't get vacc'd up.

I'm mostly concerned for the older folks. I woulda just retired if I was 55+, it aint worth it (but then again they make 10x more than I do so wtf do I know)
Not ascribing those (management’s) views to you personally, but that all seems misguided.

Even if other firms are taking a look at what DPW is doing, and do eventually follow suit, that’s not the equivalent of “leading the market.” Leading the market implies that you are building goodwill. To say that you are “leading the market” by jumpstarting the end of WFH is like saying DPW could lead the market by reducing first year salary from $205k to $190k.
I mean are we arguing semantics about what it means to "lead the market"? The point is if firms are generally following what one specific firm is doing (whether you or any individual thinks it's negative or positive), that puts that firm in a unique and exclusive position. The same position as leading the market in salaries, benefits, other policies etc.

Specifically it puts that firm in more news articles (X and Y firm follow DPW's [return to office plan]), it lets clients like that Morgan Stanley guy like/appreciate this firm more (and I'm sure there are plenty more small-c conservative clients who feel similarly but won't voice it publicly). And, if no one dies or gets seriously sick (as other posters already noted), then there's not really a downside, and only hardcore trumpers will complain that they forced us to get vacc'd. It informs people who don't want to work from home that this is the firm to go to.

(Apologies if I mischaracterize your argument) It sounds like you're talking about goodwill among young millenial/zoomer junior associates who don't want to return to the office. The world is much bigger than those associates

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Anonymous User » Wed Sep 15, 2021 10:54 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:37 pm
Is this all just to please Eric Grossman?
Don't know how much DPW needs to please Grossman given the long-standing relationship between DPW and MS. Guess it's more like DPW partners have the same/similar mentality because Grossman used to be a DPW partner.

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Re: Davis Polk Return to Office Sept 13

Post by Wubbles » Wed Sep 15, 2021 11:05 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Wed Sep 15, 2021 10:40 am
Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 10:34 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:46 pm
Anonymous User wrote:
Tue Sep 14, 2021 9:37 pm
Is this all just to please Eric Grossman?
Honestly (and I'm completely guessing) I think that management thinks that the vaccines will make everyone safe. So by forcing everyone to get vaccinated (which is another discussion I guess) and to come in the office, they are again "leading the market" and will be thought of positively when all the other firms eventually follow along if we have 0 covid cases (read: deaths).

I also think they are trying to approach it in a common-sense way. They know that a large number of us are perfectly fine going to bars and indoor restaurants so why not also come to the office?

And it really is forcing you to get vaccinated. They told us the key card won't work if you don't get vacc'd up.

I'm mostly concerned for the older folks. I woulda just retired if I was 55+, it aint worth it (but then again they make 10x more than I do so wtf do I know)
Not ascribing those (management’s) views to you personally, but that all seems misguided.

Even if other firms are taking a look at what DPW is doing, and do eventually follow suit, that’s not the equivalent of “leading the market.” Leading the market implies that you are building goodwill. To say that you are “leading the market” by jumpstarting the end of WFH is like saying DPW could lead the market by reducing first year salary from $205k to $190k.
I mean are we arguing semantics about what it means to "lead the market"? The point is if firms are generally following what one specific firm is doing (whether you or any individual thinks it's negative or positive), that puts that firm in a unique and exclusive position. The same position as leading the market in salaries, benefits, other policies etc.

Specifically it puts that firm in more news articles (X and Y firm follow DPW's [return to office plan]), it lets clients like that Morgan Stanley guy like/appreciate this firm more (and I'm sure there are plenty more small-c conservative clients who feel similarly but won't voice it publicly). And, if no one dies or gets seriously sick (as other posters already noted), then there's not really a downside, and only hardcore trumpers will complain that they forced us to get vacc'd. It informs people who don't want to work from home that this is the firm to go to.

(Apologies if I mischaracterize your argument) It sounds like you're talking about goodwill among young millenial/zoomer junior associates who don't want to return to the office. The world is much bigger than those associates
Maybe my firm is way off the norm, but the young associates (as well as the senior partners) are who want to return to office here and the midlevels through junior partners are the ones fighting tooth and nail to hang onto wfh. Especially the junior partners and soon to be junior partners

Seriously? What are you waiting for?

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