The average profit per equity partner of AMLAW 200 firms in 2004 was approximately $830,000. Let’s take that figure as roughly compensation per partner.
Executive Legal Adviser, Nov./Dec. 2005 at 6 lists the compensation of 38 general counsel of publicly-traded Texas-based companies. Adding in the value of the stock options those general counsel received, 26 of them received compensation in 2004 of more than the law firm partners’ figure. (See my post of June 15, 2005 about compensation of GCs in Asia.)
Sure, there’s only one GC per company while there are hundreds of equity partners in the huge firms, and sure options can sink underwater, but still the metrics seem worth comparing.