Why It's Not a Good Idea to Negotiate as an Entry Level Attorney and What are the Exceptions
Speaker 1:[00:00:00] How do you recommend approaching salary negotiations as an entry level of attorney?
As an entry level attorney, you typically do not want to try to negotiate if you're getting an offer. You typically don't want to try to negotiate salary too much because there's typically going to be a lot of applicants for the type of job you're getting. Or, if you're confident enough in yourself and you know that you can get other jobs then you can tell the firm, "This is what other firms are going to pay me," or, "This is what the market is." And, if it's a smaller firm that offers you certain things, then you can do that.
But the big thing is every job has trade offs. So I know, for example, I know partners that get offers of $4 million a year to work in a law firm. And they take the one that pays two and a half because the one that pays two and a half gives some better training, offers some more long-term opportunity, and they believe that the amount of money that they're investing upfront or giving up is going to be more than offset based on the experience and contacts and so forth that they're getting. So, if you're going into a firm as an entry level attorney, you're better off getting an [00:01:00] experience than not having a job. You're absolutely better off not negotiating your salary if it's going to, result in you not getting an offer.
You just have to think about all these things. And so I would recommend that you do what you can to work on that and do the best you possibly can. Now, if you're negotiating a salary and there's other people in your like second level, second year, or something like that and you have other options or you're in a practice here where there's not a lot of people like you, you can negotiate it. But I don't know that it's a good idea to negotiate as an entry level attorney 'cause there's always going to be a lot of people trying to get your same offer.
The best way for you to negotiate is to have negotiation leverage. And the only way you're going to have a negotiation leverage is if you have multiple offers and things that sounded the best. That means don't undermarket yourself as widely as you possibly can.