Thursday, January 11, 2007

Late night in the office. I just woke up a candidate on the East Coast who we decided to make an offer to. He interviewed off-cycle, because of some personal issue that kept him from taking a job right out of law school. He talked about it a bunch during the interviews, but I can't remember if it was an illness, a family thing, something job-related, something with his Visa, I tuned him out for most of the interview so I'm really not sure. But his resume is spotless and we've had some associates leave in the past few weeks (end of year attrition is always a problem... we should take back their bonuses if they leave within a full year of getting the checks) and so there's extra work to go around and we could use another pair of never-sleeping eyes. I suppose I could have waited until the morning to let him know he has the job, but it's only 2 in the morning back East and he's going to have to be awake at this hour anyway once he's working here so why not get him started now. He was excited to get the offer although he sounded a little tired on the phone. I don't know how he could sleep, to be honest. When I was waiting to hear from the firm about my offer, almost twenty years ago, I couldn't sleep for weeks. It was good practice.

It's always enjoyable to have new blood in the middle of the cycle. New faces, new victims, new people trying to impress me. By now, four months in for most of these first-years, they've given up trying to impress me. They're used to me, they're used to the job, they get a little complacent and realize that we're probably not going to fire them and that we need them as much as they need us, if not more. But with new blood it's not like that. They still expect something more than we deliver. They still expect this will be life-changing in more ways than health-related. They still expect the work will be interesting. It's extraordinarily rewarding to watch them mature from eager, idealistic first-years to tired, jaded, depressed second-years, to wealthy, unfulfilled, soulless partners like me. The cycle starts again every fall. Except for these bonus off-cycle hires. I can't wait. I think I'll take him out to lunch on his first day but have him called back to the office during the appetizer.

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