Life As A “BigLaw” Associate: “The #1 Worst And Unhappiest Job In America”?

Law school graduates often focus exclusively on salary, if they are fortunate enough to have choices. It makes sense to consider your salary and other financial benefits/perks when choosing a job, but it shouldn’t be the only factor you consider. Here is an article describing a book discussing what life as a New York “BigLaw” associate is like. Two sentences in the article caught my attention:
  • A Forbes survey recounted in the book found “the #1 worst and unhappiest job in America was that of associate at a Big Law firm.”
  • “As one former Big Law associate put it, ‘I have never in my life met anyone who regretted their decision to quit their job as a law firm associate. Never.’”
Having started my career as a “BigLaw” associate (although in Orange County, California, not in New York), I would say that I do not agree with the first bullet point above – the work is stressful and the hours are long, but I can certainly think of worse jobs. But I also would say that, speaking for myself, I fully agree with the second bullet point. Food for thought…