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Can someone talk about the progression of associates throughout the typical "four year" program up to VP. My understanding is that hours are the worst the first year....and progressively get much better as your role switches to being the MD's "sidekick" , spending more and more time traveling and "shadowing" them, participating in entertaining clients...etc.

Do 3rd/4th year associates start to live normal lives?? Weekends drop off, you can make dinner plans, etc.
....or is it bootcamp all the way up to the VP promotion??

Can some current associates...or perhaps well versed analysts share their knowledge.

Comments (14)

  • macro's picture

    In my group, 1st year associates work as hard (if not harder) when compared to the analysts. Starting from their 2nd year and on, there starts to be a big divergence amongst the class depending on staffings, style and talent. There are guys who seem to be working a 9-5, while there are guys who are always here. As far as how this will affect their careers going forward, we'll have to wait and see.

  • Eric Stratton's picture

    VP's I talked to only work weekends when shit is hitting the fan. And most are usually out between 7 and 8ish. Working 8 to 8 five days a week is still a 60 hour work week when you are trying to start a family.

    "Well, you can do whatever you want to us, but we're not going to sit here and listen to you badmouth the United States of America."

  • Genesis's picture

    I don't know about 2nd year, but 1st year is more stressful than my analyst years. A lot more accountability, and checking work takes almost as long as actually doing it yourself.

  • In reply to LIBOR
    Eric Stratton's picture

    Not sure about MBB but from what I know about Big Law you never see a huge drop in hours like banking. An MD in banking might work 40-50 hours a week and do a lot of traveling but partners at Big law firms still need to bill as many hours as possible. I know some that are in their 50s and work around 60 hours a week at least. And associates who stay on past 2 or 3 years and want to make partner are probably putting in 70 to 80 hour weeks until their 8th year.

    "Well, you can do whatever you want to us, but we're not going to sit here and listen to you badmouth the United States of America."

  • tomm29's picture

    BigLaw appears to be a different story, as there's mad push on making hours even if it's pointless. There's huge misconception that partners work less hours, my cousin says. Especially young partners are cutthroat, since they didn't work their asses off for so many years to be a disappointment.