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Philadelphia Partners Are Lowest Paid and Least Satisfied with Compensation

Posted Sep 21, 2012 8:01 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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What is it about Seattle that keeps partners happy with their compensation, despite below average numbers?

The Careerist noted the cities where partners are happiest with their compensation, and wondered why Seattle made the list. “Is it the neo-hippie culture,” the blog asked, “or the superior coffee that makes them so much more mellow?”

The satisfaction ratings are part of a survey (PDF) on partner compensation by Major, Lindsey & Africa and ALM Legal Intelligence. The study found average partner compensation is $681,000, though the average is higher for equity partners and male partners.

These cities had the highest satisfaction ratings, with one-third or more of the partners surveyed saying they are very satisfied with compensation:

• Seattle ($532,000 average compensation)

• Dallas ($768,000)

• San Francisco ($723,000)

• Silicon Valley ($1.2 million, the city with the highest average compensation)

Houston and New York were close behind, with 32 percent reporting they were very satisfied with compensation.

In Philadelphia, on the other hand, only 16 percent of the partners reported they were very satisfied. The average compensation there is $478,000. “So it looks like partners there aren't making a lot of money, and they're mad as hell about it,” the Careerist observes. “Plus the coffee isn't nearly as good as Seattle's.”

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