Associate Comp & Econ 101

This will not be a lecture. However. In the course of navigating published analysis and coverage of our beloved industry, I can rely on regularly coming across pat assertions displaying such frightful ignorance of basic economics that I’m forced to conclude the speakers’ only encounter with Economics 101 was seeing it listed in a course
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Articles, Compensation, Finance, Recruiting

How Reliable are the AmLaw Numbers?

The AmLaw rankings have been with us for over thirty years, and despite the evergreen complaints about their design, purpose, impact, and reliability, to our knowledge no one has ever tried to systematically ask AmLaw firms themselves whether and to what extent they actually comply in reporting accurate data.  We think it’s time to take a look. We
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Articles, Finance, Partnership Structures, Recruiting

Conference: Innovation in Entry-Level Recruiting

Going to be in San Francisco Wednesday, March 11? Want an excuse to be? Then we have the answer for you: Please join us at our day-long conference, Innovation in Entry Level Recruiting. Why attend? From the program description: It’s no longer news that the legal profession is undergoing seismic changes resulting from a “perfect
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Articles, Law Schools, Recruiting

Accountability? Who, Me?

Russell Long (1918—2003) was a US Senator from Louisiana for nearly 40 years (1948—1987) and chairman of the Senate Finance Committee for nearly half that period. As such, he was an expert on the US tax code and, legend has it, observed that the realities of politics meant any effort to enact “tax reform” could
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Articles, Compensation, Cultural Considerations, Finance, Leadership, Practice Group Management, Recruiting

Checkbook Recruiting

From the Kirkland & Ellis site, under the topic Careers–>Laterals Overview (I quote in full, emphasis supplied): At Kirkland, the quality and experience of our lawyers are among our greatest strengths. We are committed to making a substantial investment in our lateral hires by fostering an environment in which they are seamlessly integrated into our
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Articles, Business Models, Compensation, Cultural Considerations, Finance, Leadership, Recruiting, Strategy

The 5:1 Male/Female Partner Ratio

For those of you who may have missed it, we refer you forthwith to Brian Dalton’s latest column on Above The Law, “Is There a Business Case for More Female BigLaw Partners?” Anyone with a scintilla of conscience can only look at the information presented there with some combination of shame and dismay—if not despair.
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Articles, Cultural Considerations, Leadership, Partnership Structures, Practice Group Management, Recruiting, Strategy

An Apprenticeship to Practice–That Works

I recently wrote about the depressing prospects for graduates of all but the top ten or twenty law schools (Two Law Grad Markets). And yes, these were statistical generalizations, and the experience of specific individuals with particular skills and backgrounds will always be different, pro and con. But as an industry, if you care about
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Articles, Business Models, Law Schools, Leadership, Recruiting, Strategy

Two Law Grad Markets

The first thing you learn in your antitrust law course is to ask, “What’s the market?” In other words, define the market you’re talking about, because the definition you select, I promise you, will make all the difference. Antitrust analysis aside, choosing the span of the market on which you plan to compete is such
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Articles, Law Schools, Recruiting

Lessons from Google

Loyal readers of Adam Smith, Esq. know that we think there’s much that can be learned for Law Land from other industries. Today’s column is in that vein, and our texts for today come from The New York Times and Above the Law. The first text is Tom Friedman’s recent “How to get a job
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Articles, Cultural Considerations, Recruiting

Delusions of Crowds

When a large number of smart, accomplished, ambitious people seem to be behaving in a way that makes no rational sense, there has to be an irrational explanation. I’ve written and spoken before about my overall attitude towards aggressive lateral partner recruitment. As Calvin Coolidge reportedly said, leaving church and asked by a reporter what
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Articles, Compensation, Cultural Considerations, Finance, Leadership, Practice Group Management, Recruiting, Strategy