Yes. It's about connections to powerbrokers within the firm. There are certain secretaries who you'll see cause even relatively "senior" partners to bow their heads when they pass in the hallway, avoid direct eye contact, etc. I saw a member of the global committee bow down and kiss a senior paralegal's (forty-year veteran) ring in one of the admission-only antechambers at the firm holiday party last year. That sort of thing. But it isn't just about seniority. Like I said, who you know, what you've done for them, what shit they have on you and what shit you have on them. You learn the pecking order pretty quickly either because you're smart and pick up on it or you're stupid and you get hurt.