What is going through OCI like?

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270910
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What is going through OCI like?

Postby 270910 » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:09 am

So there are lots of productive threads about interview tips, whether or not you should accept interviews or decline them (???), bidding strats, etc. I was hoping some rising 3Ls and rising or practicing Attorneys might shed some light on what it's like to go through the process. I hear a lot of references to things like hospitality suites, offer dinners, callbacks coming the same day, callbacks coming months later, etc.

Anybody have some stories, for curiosity and discussion more than for strategery?

Bonus points will be awarded for any stories that promote racial, cultural, or religious harmony (my favorite trend in TLS topics). Points will be detracted for misuse of the anonymous feature, tagging, or being a 0L.

SCORE LIST:
(1) LurkerNoMore: (+10 for a real and informative answer, thanks!) = 10 points
(2) NYAssociate: (+3 for correctly noting this thread's abject failure) = 3 points
(3) Disco_Barred: (+1 for starting thread) (-1 for starting thread) = 0 points
(4) JPU: (-1 for attempting to award points in my thread) = -1 point
(5) Anonymous User: (-2 for disobedience) (-2 for not being funny) = -4 points
Last edited by 270910 on Tue Aug 03, 2010 11:02 am, edited 7 times in total.

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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:14 am

Hey I'm just a 1L but I wanted to tag this post.

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Lawl Shcool
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby Lawl Shcool » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:32 am

Anonymous User wrote:Hey I'm just a 1L but I wanted to tag this post.


-2

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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:39 am

-4 = :cry:

NYAssociate
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby NYAssociate » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:47 am

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Last edited by NYAssociate on Tue Oct 05, 2010 6:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

LurkerNoMore
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby LurkerNoMore » Tue Aug 03, 2010 10:56 am

A real answer.

I'm sure this varies by school, but from my first and second hand experiences with T14 schools this is what I've found.

The week is pretty much a pressure cooker for everyone interviewing. If you are someone who gets stressed out by others, stay away from your interview location at all times you aren't actually interviewing.

Interviews are scheduled back to back. If one interviewer gets off the schedule, it can through things off pretty badly. You should be aware of where all of your interviews are located, especially if you have back to back interviews, so you don't have to look things up.

You will get tired of covering the same ground interview after interview, day after day. Be sure to not let your tone or demeanor betray that. Remember, at least you are moving from room to room -- the interviewers are sitting in the same spot, seeing largely the same types of candidates parade through.

Some firms do have hospitality suites. If you go (and you should if you have any interest in the firm) treat it like an interview. They often keep track of who came and whether you made a distinctly favorable or unfavorable impression. If you bid on a firm and didn't get a slot, you can sometimes drop off a resume at the hospitality suite. Sometimes a firm will be able to squeeze you in for an interview.

Some firms do dinners after the screening interview. Reading anything into these is kind of dicey. Some firms invite everyone who interviewed, some invite people they are going to give callbacks to, some invite a seemingly random group of people.

Callbacks often start trickling in after a day or so. This is when tension usually builds. No matter how discrete people are trying to be, word will get around as to which firms have sent out callback invitations. You'll also start seeing people take callback offers on their cell phones. This is the point you'll want to duck out of the common spaces as much as possible if this sort of thing will freak you out.

You'll also find that people prepare to vastly different degrees. Some people will have only a vague idea about the firms they are interviewing with and some will have folders of information on each one.

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matty
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby matty » Tue Aug 03, 2010 11:44 am

given the rigors of OCI, what is the max number of firms you would interview with in a day? I was lucky enough to get a number of preselects for an off campus fair, and I can schedule up to 11 twenty minute interviews on that day. Should I just try to maximize my number of interviews, or would it be a smarter move to whittle it down to 6 or so that I can really research and prepare for?

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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby LurkerNoMore » Tue Aug 03, 2010 11:59 am

matty wrote:given the rigors of OCI, what is the max number of firms you would interview with in a day? I was lucky enough to get a number of preselects for an off campus fair, and I can schedule up to 11 twenty minute interviews on that day. Should I just try to maximize my number of interviews, or would it be a smarter move to whittle it down to 6 or so that I can really research and prepare for?


Do as many as you can. There is no reason you can't prepare in advance. As long as the space is set up so you can get from interview to interview without being late, I would maximize your interviews.

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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby rando » Tue Aug 03, 2010 12:23 pm

The OCI process blows until you have an offer in hand.

Starting with screening, it is nerve-racking to start. Despite the research you do and knowing what everyone is going to ask you, the whole process is fairly foreign to most people. After a couple interviews you start to get your sea-legs and get a heck of a lot better at it. After about 10-12 the process gets nauseatingly boring and routine. I absolutely despised screening interviews by #20ish. But even by the end you will get some curveballs and there will be firms that you know from 30sec in are not going to give you a callback. (e.g. asking you to go through your resume from the bottom up).

Also, be weary of firms that have HR personnel outside the interview room. Oftentimes these people will be filling out a separate evaluation form. Don't blow them off.

Its also fairly stressful running around to interviews while keeping up with firm research, eating lunch, regrouping etc. when you have 5-8 interviews in a few hours during the day. Stay organized and do your research well beforehand. Summarize it into a one-page bullet point list for each firm with practice areas, # of attorneys, who your interviewers are, and tidbits you gleaned from your research.

I heard about callbacks anywhere from same day to two weeks later. One firm notified all the callbacks through an e-mail that was not bcc'd, strange...

Callbacks were usually scheduled within a week or two of the call. Callbacks are much longer and thorough but to me were a lot less stressful. Just knowing that the firm wants you around enough to give you a callback was good to know and gave some confidence that it was my offer to screw up. Also, even if you said something stupid in one of the interviews, there were plenty more interviews to round everything out and give a more balanced perspective on your personality. Though I think callbacks are much more difficult for socially awkward folk who find it easier to hide the awkwardness for 20min than 6-8 hours.

I found out about offers within a week or two of the callback.

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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby rando » Tue Aug 03, 2010 12:23 pm

LurkerNoMore wrote:
matty wrote:given the rigors of OCI, what is the max number of firms you would interview with in a day? I was lucky enough to get a number of preselects for an off campus fair, and I can schedule up to 11 twenty minute interviews on that day. Should I just try to maximize my number of interviews, or would it be a smarter move to whittle it down to 6 or so that I can really research and prepare for?


Do as many as you can. There is no reason you can't prepare in advance. As long as the space is set up so you can get from interview to interview without being late, I would maximize your interviews.


+1

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20160810
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby 20160810 » Tue Aug 03, 2010 2:00 pm

What's the best interview tips thread?

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Kohinoor
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby Kohinoor » Tue Aug 03, 2010 2:05 pm

It's like being in a sword fight with a guy who is using a salami instead of a sword and he keeps trying to stab you in the mouth and you don't have any sword.

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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby Alyosha » Tue Aug 03, 2010 7:44 pm

SoftBoiledLife wrote:What's the best interview tips thread?


I'm not sure which is the best interview thread, but I compiled a list of helpful OCI threads in this post:

viewtopic.php?f=23&t=120382

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Lawl Shcool
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby Lawl Shcool » Tue Aug 03, 2010 7:54 pm

I had a screening interview today at a big firm in my home market that has different offices coming to my new OCI. We talked mostly about my 1L year, where I wanted to practice, and the dynamics of the summer program / new associate development program. No really tough traditional interview style questions and it was very relaxed. I was told to interview at OCI and go from there.

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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby green » Tue Aug 03, 2010 7:56 pm

Kohinoor wrote:It's like being in a sword fight with a guy who is using a salami instead of a sword and he keeps trying to stab you in the mouth and you don't have any sword.


The credited response, of course.

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General Tso
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby General Tso » Tue Aug 03, 2010 8:12 pm

a callback interview lasts 6-8 hours?

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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 03, 2010 8:23 pm

General Tso wrote:a callback interview lasts 6-8 hours?


Lol, no. I have one tomorrow and it's two hours.

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Big Shrimpin
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby Big Shrimpin » Tue Aug 03, 2010 8:25 pm

General Tso wrote:a callback interview lasts 6-8 hours?



6-8 hours of THIS...


Image

(sorry, its on HBO right now and I couldn't resist)

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cahesu
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby cahesu » Tue Aug 03, 2010 8:38 pm

Where do people find folders of information on a single firm?

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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:01 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
General Tso wrote:a callback interview lasts 6-8 hours?


Lol, no. I have one tomorrow and it's two hours.


My understanding is that both 2 hour callbacks and 8 hour callbacks are pretty unusual. I have two callbacks from non-OCI mailing and both are scheduled to be 5-7 interviews plus a lunch over a period of about 5 hours. I hear that's average.

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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby nealric » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:06 pm

Image

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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby rando » Tue Aug 03, 2010 9:08 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
General Tso wrote:a callback interview lasts 6-8 hours?


Lol, no. I have one tomorrow and it's two hours.


uhh. lol, yes. I had 12 last year and they ranged from 4-10hrs.

On "average" a callback consists of interviews from ~9-12 followed by lunch and then a small round of interviews in the afternoon.

Some of the more intense callbacks had evening interviews followed by dinner then a round of interviews and lunch the next day.

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Texasboundanddown
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby Texasboundanddown » Fri Aug 06, 2010 3:56 am

How bad are the long callbacks? And what do they talk about? I can do 20 mins easy I would imagine but something like that? There is only so much you can talk to people about.

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prezidentv8
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby prezidentv8 » Fri Aug 06, 2010 4:10 am

green wrote:
Kohinoor wrote:It's like being in a sword fight with a guy who is using a salami instead of a sword and he keeps trying to stab you in the mouth and you don't have any sword.


The credited response, of course.


lolz

LurkerNoMore
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Re: What is going through OCI like?

Postby LurkerNoMore » Fri Aug 06, 2010 8:24 am

cahesu wrote:Where do people find folders of information on a single firm?

They don't "find" them -- they make them. Usually pulled from the firm's site, Chambers, Vault, Lexis/Westlaw, etc.


Anonymous User wrote:My understanding is that both 2 hour callbacks and 8 hour callbacks are pretty unusual. I have two callbacks from non-OCI mailing and both are scheduled to be 5-7 interviews plus a lunch over a period of about 5 hours. I hear that's average.


Yup -- though it probably varies by market. The variants I saw were: morning or afternoon interviews, no lunch (about 3-4 hours), morning interviews with lunch (4-5 hours), and full day interviews with lunch in the middle (6-7 hours).

Texasboundanddown wrote:How bad are the long callbacks? And what do they talk about? I can do 20 mins easy I would imagine but something like that? There is only so much you can talk to people about.


They can be fatiguing. You are meeting with different people, which helps, but you need to not show it when you are answering the same question for the 5th time that day. Also, some interviewers are better than others, and you have to be prepared to carry the conversation for 15 or 20 mins if necessary. Often firms will give you a list of your call back interviewers in advance (though advance might just be the night before and an change at the last minute). It is a good idea to read these people's bios so that you have some questions in advance and don't stick your foot in your mouth accidentally.

Also, the toughest interview days are the ones where you double up with one firm in the morning and the other in the afternoon. There can be a real danger of the interviews bleeding together in your mind, or that your morning interview will run late and mess you up for your afternoon one. I would avoid lunches, if possible, on those days.




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