How often do you get yelled at?

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fire_ice

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How often do you get yelled at?

Postby fire_ice » Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:12 pm

A second year associate here. I'm at a firm known to have a "gentle and friendly" culture.
But yet I still get yelled by a senior associate or a partner, or watch them explode/have a melt down at times. Maybe almost every quarter.

(Btw often times the screaming/melt down is definitely not because of my fault. I make mistakes, but generally I have a reputation for being a decent associate.)

I wonder how much of this is normal and unavoidable so I should tolerate. Before law school I worked at a place that was not a high stress environment so I didn't see any of this.

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LaLiLuLeLo

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby LaLiLuLeLo » Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:13 pm

I’ve never been yelled at. It’s not normal but unfortunately it’s not uncommon.

jarofsoup

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby jarofsoup » Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:23 pm

At my old job a partner backed me up against the wall of my office poking me and there was a lot of yelling. Also touched me a lot. Pinched my cheeks.... normal right?

At my new one there is none. Think you should lateral.

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby jaekeem » Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:25 pm

jarofsoup wrote:At my old job a partner backed me up against the wall of my office poking me and there was a lot of yelling. Also touched me a lot. Pinched my cheeks.... normal right?

At my new one there is none. Think you should lateral.


WTF??!? this has to be at the apex of absurd shit, even for BL, no?

jarofsoup

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby jarofsoup » Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:27 pm

Elite boutique

nerd1

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby nerd1 » Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:54 pm

At my V40 (or V50, can't recall) in NYC, I see or hear about people getting yelled out either literally or in the white shoe way few times every month. I myself get yelled at about once a quarter. I never had anybody screaming at me, but I am talking about midlevels/seniors angrily criticizing you. I try my best to not take any of that personal and remind myself that I am lateraling out anyway.

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:01 pm

nerd1 wrote:At my V40 (or V50, can't recall) in NYC, I see or hear about people getting yelled out either literally or in the white shoe way few times every month. I myself get yelled at about once a quarter. I never had anybody screaming at me, but I am talking about midlevels/seniors angrily criticizing you. I try my best to not take any of that personal and remind myself that I am lateraling out anyway.


I am a mid level. If a mid level or senior yelled at me I would yell back or walk out of their office

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Yea All Right

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby Yea All Right » Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:57 pm

I've never been yelled at before in biglaw, but I've always worked with generally chill people and in closer-knit practice groups.

I like to think that if someone started yelling at me because of a mistake I made, I'd let them finish and then say, "I know this is my fault and I apologize, however I'd really appreciate it if you didn't yell at me." Who knows though.

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hdivschool

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby hdivschool » Fri Sep 06, 2019 10:13 pm

Never been yelled at and never heard of anyone at my firm being yelled at.

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 06, 2019 10:17 pm

First year here. I used to get yelled at on a weekly basis by one particularly terrible partner. I had to switch practice groups because I couldn't take it anymore. She has quite a reputation, so most people were very understanding about why I moved out.

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Sep 06, 2019 10:46 pm

If I was screamed at I imagine myself immediately lateraling.

jacketyellow

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby jacketyellow » Fri Sep 06, 2019 11:26 pm

I got yelled at once by a partner right before Christmas holidays. I was already certain that I was lateraling, but that took the cake. Couldn't lateral though because right after the holidays, I was laid off in January. True story.

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby QContinuum » Sat Sep 07, 2019 12:42 am

Actual, literal screaming (let alone the kind of physical abuse described by another poster ITT) is absolutely not something that occurs at every firm. It is not normal in this day and age, and suggests that lateraling should be seriously considered.

But "melt down" more generally? That's hard to say. It's a stressful life. Depending on how broadly a meltdown is defined, arguably meltdowns are inevitable in BL. At any rate, some level of unpleasantness is inevitable.

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 07, 2019 1:56 am

jacketyellow wrote:I got yelled at once by a partner right before Christmas holidays. I was already certain that I was lateraling, but that took the cake. Couldn't lateral though because right after the holidays, I was laid off in January. True story.

First year above. Yep, been there (minus the layoff). I got yelled at before Thanksgiving and before Christmas. I also got yelled at the second day on the job after pulling an all-nighter to finish an impossible research assignment.

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 07, 2019 2:11 am

I have not been yelled at, but partners have asked me to see them in their offices. They then close the door and start cursing me out in a calm and deliberate way.

I probably work at the same firm as the "V40" poster above lol.

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby 64Fl » Sat Sep 07, 2019 6:30 am

Anonymous User wrote:I have not been yelled at, but partners have asked me to see them in their offices. They then close the door and start cursing me out in a calm and deliberate way.

I probably work at the same firm as the "V40" poster above lol.


To me, this sounds so much worse than getting yelled at. If someone yells at me, I can just go "they lost their temper." If someone sits me down and rips me to shreds calmly, it's hard to think anything other than "well, they're a psycho."

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby jarofsoup » Sat Sep 07, 2019 8:57 am

The best thing about this is what happens if people complain to HR or up the chain. Internal investigation followed by termination.

A partner could strike an associate and the firm would support the partner

I have heard of partners throwing things at people at big firms and no one cares.

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby dpcjsa » Sat Sep 07, 2019 9:26 am

Getting yelled at is absolutely unacceptable. I've worked in a couple of firms where yelling at subordinates was allowed. I quit each one when the unwarranted tirades were aimed at me. They begged me to return because I was good at my job. Nope. No way.

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby Thom » Sat Sep 07, 2019 10:50 am

I've found that most find it "ok" to yell at the guys but not at the girls. Especially if female yelling at male vs vice versa. This applies even with judges, secretaries, etc. Just observations .
Last edited by QContinuum on Mon Sep 09, 2019 3:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Outed for anon abuse.

nixy

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby nixy » Sat Sep 07, 2019 11:02 am

dpcjsa wrote:Getting yelled at is absolutely unacceptable. I've worked in a couple of firms where yelling at subordinates was allowed. I quit each one when the unwarranted tirades were aimed at me. They begged me to return because I was good at my job. Nope. No way.

I'm going to assume these weren't biglaw firms?

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 07, 2019 12:47 pm

I don't get "yelled at", but I do get the "exasperated lecture" fairly often. Almost always for not following some new policy/procedure that my supervisor forgot to tell me about and is now trying to cover her ass in front of upper-management by pretending it's my fault.

Honestly, I'd rather get screamed at...

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby notinbiglaw » Sat Sep 07, 2019 1:18 pm

One meltdown every 3 months doesn’t sound too bad to be honest as long as it’s not a symptom of something bigger. It’s better than some passive-aggressive stuff some seniors subject their juniors to.

This isn't to say you should tolerate it. You should make it clear it's not normal. If it's a partner/repeat offender, then it's time to think about your lateral opportunities.

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whats an updog

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby whats an updog » Sat Sep 07, 2019 3:50 pm

No one has ever yelled at me and I don't think that it's acceptable behavior. Definitely not happening on anywhere near a quarterly basis at my biglaw office to anyone that I've heard about.

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 07, 2019 5:04 pm

nixy wrote:
dpcjsa wrote:Getting yelled at is absolutely unacceptable. I've worked in a couple of firms where yelling at subordinates was allowed. I quit each one when the unwarranted tirades were aimed at me. They begged me to return because I was good at my job. Nope. No way.

I'm going to assume these weren't biglaw firms?


Wrong assumption, Nixy. You'll do yourself and your clients a grave disservice if you make assumptions, rather than focus on facts. But shame on me for not giving you more facts, so here goes.

The firms were indeed biglaw. Who said biglaw firms are not desperate to retain good employees? They are. As a rule, most of the firms where I worked were professional and respectful. But each one seemed to have a real jerk on every floor, i.e., attorneys who treated the professional staff like garbage.

The firms were international biglaw firms and, sure, I'll name them a few because it's been long enough ago:

1. Gibson Dunn & Crutcher in DC, nka Gibson Dunn;

2. Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis in Philly; and

3. McKenna Cuneo in DC, which became McKenna Long Aldredge and which is now, I believe, disbanded.

Bottom line is if you become part of a big firm, don't be rude to the people who support you in your professional life. Most staffers subscribe to the adage, "poor planning on your end will never constitute an emergency on my end." I know this because I used to be one of them.

If we treat our subordinates with respect, courtesy, and dignity, they will just about always go the extra mile for you. If you don't, you'll find yourself without support during a crisis at the office.

I knew a beloved attorney who did simple things for his staff, like he'd do for his family. Whenever he had a business meeting at a restaurant, he brought lobster bisque back for the secretaries. Every single time. He knew their names and honored their birthdays. He helped pool donated "sick days" ehen one needed cancer treatment. His staff adored him.

Without the paralegals, secretaries, word processing staff, mail clerks, and even the cleaning crew, lawyers are nothing. Let's never forget thst.

And let's not forget that you have some power, too, even if you're low level. More than you know. As we rise up our career ladders, I hope we all retain our humanity, like my favorite lawyer, described above, did.

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Re: How often do you get yelled at?

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Sep 07, 2019 5:37 pm

^hear, hear to the prior poster. Don't treat people below you badly...ever. Especially staff, but junior associates too.

I'll bite on this. I was a paralegal for a long time, and then and attorney in biglaw:

- I saw a partner at a V3 throw an office chair (with wheels) across the room and into a wall in the paralegals' office

- I saw a partner throw a pen at his secretary like a dart. It whooshed by her head. She quit shortly thereafter. It was because she asked the partner if he could take a call from a key client who had stated it was an emergency, even though the partner had previous said to "hold all calls"

- A venture partner in my firm's Boston office f*cked the copy girl for money (she was using it, and stealing our petty cash to buy drugs). He was married with two high-school aged kids and though screwing a 19-year old who was hired through a help-kids-from-a-lower-income-area-their-first-office-jobs would be a good idea. He was promplty picked up by a competitor.

- Same partner punched a hole in the wall when he was angry. He was reprimanded for that.

- And over the years I've seen a whole lot of yelling. Not usually at people, but usually "at the universe" in frustration with the state of deals or clients' actions. It's a thing.



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