Question: If someone is interested in working at a small- or medium-size firm as a long-term career, does spending the first few years of your career at a big law firm give you an advantage over someone who actually starts at a smaller firm and remains there?
Now, on the other hand, I do think it is a good idea to keep all your options open. I believe that the best way you can position yourself would be to take a job in a major law firm if you have that opportunity.
Of course, there are different types of major law firms. For example, if you go to work for a large, national insurance defense law firm, more than likely you will not be a viable candidate for the firms that do work for the Fortune 500 companies. Similarly, should you choose a large medical malpractice firm then you should be setting your sights on firms that have that type of focus, rather than the firms which represent Corporate America.