Leaning Out: The 2013 Associate Survey
In almost every aspect of their professional lives, women midlevels are less satisfied than their male counterparts, according to our annual associates survey.
At first glance, the overall mood seems undeniably upbeat: In our 2013 Midlevel Associates Survey, third-, fourth-, and fifth-years at the country’s biggest law firms gave their employers the highest composite scores that we’ve seen in almost 10 years. Scores ticked up from last year in all 12 of the areas that we use to measure job satisfaction, including the interest level of the work, compensation, training, partner/associate relations, and billable hours. All terrific news, boding well for the profession, except this: In scrutinizing the data, we noticed a clear gender divide in how midlevels viewed their firms and futures. For the first time, we decided to focus on how women and men answered our questions to better understand the sexes’ differing associate experiences. In general, we found that men doled out higher scores in virtually every category of the survey, suggesting that they are more satisfied with the direction of their firms and their careers than their female counterparts. The genders also split when it came to priorities: Men expressed a greater desire to become a partner, while women often voiced uncertainty about staying on.
Previous Associates Survey coverage :: 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007
By Vivia Chen
In general, midlevels are happier with their jobs than they have been in years—but women are noticeably less satisfied than men.
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A surprising point of dissatisfaction for midlevels: the lack of a 401(k) match.
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How we conduct our survey of midlevel associates.