Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Oxymoron?

2007 50 Best Law Firms for Women.

These are the best firms, and the average percentage of female partners (equity and nonequity) appears to be approximatly 25%. Keep in mind that the female to male split is roughly 50/50 in law school and one year out of law school. So what happens between year 1 and partnership?

4 comments:

DJ FunkyGrrL said...

I think law firms are afraid of hiring women for fear of sexual harassmnet issues and paternity leave

PunditMom said...

This is a pet issue of mine, having worked as a lawyer for many years, including in a large law firm. The numbers will continue to be low until law firms, and all large businesses, stop viewing women as liabilities because they may leave or cut back hours for a time because of parenting responsibilities. But that is a LONG way off.

Selfmademom said...

Most of my lawyer friends left their high powered jobs right after they had their babies. That's where the disconnect is.

Too Cool for School said...

djfunkygrrl - To give credit where it's due, large law firms do have extremely liberal maternity/paternity leave policies. Large law firms usually permit up to a year of job-protected leave, with 3 months or so of it paid.

PunditMom - The corporate environment is light years ahead of the law firm environment. When I read Penelope Trunk (of Brazen Careerist and now at Work it, Mom), she's all, Gen Y demands a better quality of life, and employers are responding. Day after day, I read commentary to that effect, and it completely contradicts my observation of what's happening at law firms. Nobody is riled about the issue because lets face it - lawyers are overpaid to begin with. Who cares about the quality of life of a lawyer? (Answer: lawyers with family do!)

selfmademom - ain't it the truth! Among my own peers, the working mothers who succeed fall under one or more of the following categories: (i) doesn't practice in litigation; (ii) husband stays home; or (iii) negotiates reduced hours schedule. I fall into the first and third categories. And we have a nanny.