Unique questions to ask at CBs

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Anonymous User
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Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:04 pm

After a slew of OCI interviews and a few CBs, I'm getting tired of asking the same run-of-the mill questions, the answers to which can generally be found on the website or by talking to classmates who worked at the firm previously. Anyone have any questions they like to ask that are more quirky, yet still tell you something useful about the firm?

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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:09 pm

Anonymous User wrote:After a slew of OCI interviews and a few CBs, I'm getting tired of asking the same run-of-the mill questions, the answers to which can generally be found on the website or by talking to classmates who worked at the firm previously. Anyone have any questions they like to ask that are more quirky, yet still tell you something useful about the firm?


"Barbara Walters, Oprah, your Wife: Fuck one, kill one, marry one. Go."

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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:11 pm

Ask about a case listed on their bio.

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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:12 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Ask about a case listed on their bio.


I have yet to find a non-douchetastic way to bring this up, so I stopped expending the energy. Hasn't seemed to hurt me at all.

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Lawl Shcool
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Lawl Shcool » Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:44 pm

I like:

"what are common characteristics you find in successful associates?" then follow-up with examples of how I have those characteristics

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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:49 pm

Ask about what they feel has made them successful at the firm.

If they're a partner, ask what they've learned that they wish they knew when they were associates.

Asking about a major case they're working on couldn't hurt, but don't dig for a minor case they're doing.

Perhaps ask about their most satisfying moment or case at the firm.

Ask about their experiences as young associates (in terms of responsibility, satisfaction with the type of work they got)

Ask what keeps them motivated at the firm on a day-to-day basis

If they have a family (perhaps if they bring up their wife or kids), ask how they balance work with raising a family.

so on and so forth

It's really not hard guys.

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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:54 pm

JPU wrote:I like:

"what are common characteristics you find in successful associates?" then follow-up with examples of how I have those characteristics

Interviewers say that is the one question they never hope to get asked, because it's so fucking stupid

2009 Prospective
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby 2009 Prospective » Wed Sep 08, 2010 5:59 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
JPU wrote:I like:

"what are common characteristics you find in successful associates?" then follow-up with examples of how I have those characteristics

Interviewers say that is the one question they never hope to get asked, because it's so fucking stupid


I had a screener tell me that he/she asked this question in all her interviews back when interviewing.

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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby 2009 Prospective » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Ask about what they feel has made them successful at the firm.

If they're a partner, ask what they've learned that they wish they knew when they were associates.

Asking about a major case they're working on couldn't hurt, but don't dig for a minor case they're doing.

Perhaps ask about their most satisfying moment or case at the firm.

Ask about their experiences as young associates (in terms of responsibility, satisfaction with the type of work they got)

Ask what keeps them motivated at the firm on a day-to-day basis

If they have a family (perhaps if they bring up their wife or kids), ask how they balance work with raising a family.

so on and so forth

It's really not hard guys.


I'd probably avoid the balancing life and family question.

Anonymous User
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:01 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Ask about a case listed on their bio.


I have yet to find a non-douchetastic way to bring this up, so I stopped expending the energy. Hasn't seemed to hurt me at all.



It's not hard at all. Just say, "I saw you were on such and such a case. I did such and such (some sort of connection to the case)." Then, the interviewer will take the cue and start talking about that case.

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chadwick218
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby chadwick218 » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:01 pm

I like to ask "how would you compare your experiences at [name of firm] to that of your peers at other firms?"

I also like to ask about their most memorable case / client matter when the converstation is beginning to run a bit dry.

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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:02 pm

2009 Prospective wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Ask about what they feel has made them successful at the firm.

If they're a partner, ask what they've learned that they wish they knew when they were associates.

Asking about a major case they're working on couldn't hurt, but don't dig for a minor case they're doing.

Perhaps ask about their most satisfying moment or case at the firm.

Ask about their experiences as young associates (in terms of responsibility, satisfaction with the type of work they got)

Ask what keeps them motivated at the firm on a day-to-day basis

If they have a family (perhaps if they bring up their wife or kids), ask how they balance work with raising a family.

so on and so forth

It's really not hard guys.


I'd probably avoid the balancing life and family question.


Perhaps. It depends on your own situation (do you have a wife/husband? children?) and the way the convo is going.

It also might be fun to ask about any "ridiculous" or just absurd cases they've dealt with to get a good happy-vibe convo going.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Lawl Shcool
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Lawl Shcool » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:02 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
JPU wrote:I like:

"what are common characteristics you find in successful associates?" then follow-up with examples of how I have those characteristics

Interviewers say that is the one question they never hope to get asked, because it's so fucking stupid


That's odd as many have said "wow that is a really good/tough question"

to be fair all of this talk about good questions / techniques is all speculation as each interview is so individualized

Anonymous User
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:03 pm

2009 Prospective wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
JPU wrote:I like:

"what are common characteristics you find in successful associates?" then follow-up with examples of how I have those characteristics

Interviewers say that is the one question they never hope to get asked, because it's so fucking stupid

I had a screener tell me that he/she asked this question in all her interviews back when interviewing.

That doesn't make it a non-stupid question. When you answer their questions you should be giving answers that frame your skills and abilities around your personal experiences. When you ask questions, you want to learn specific things about their firm. That question is fucking stupid because it is a waste of time.

Anonymous User
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:03 pm

JPU wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
JPU wrote:I like:

"what are common characteristics you find in successful associates?" then follow-up with examples of how I have those characteristics

Interviewers say that is the one question they never hope to get asked, because it's so fucking stupid

That's odd as many have said "wow that is a really good/tough question"

to be fair all of this talk about good questions / techniques is all speculation as each interview is so individualized

Maybe they say that because they 1) dread answering it and 2) listening to you bullshit about how you have all those characteristics.

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chadwick218
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby chadwick218 » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:04 pm

I also like to ask about:

- the working relationships between partners and associates

- whether associates have developed close friendships with one another outside of work

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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:05 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Ask about a case listed on their bio.


I have yet to find a non-douchetastic way to bring this up, so I stopped expending the energy. Hasn't seemed to hurt me at all.



It's not hard at all. Just say, "I saw you were on such and such a case. I did such and such (some sort of connection to the case)." Then, the interviewer will take the cue and start talking about that case.



To me, that's douche-tastic. (Assuming I don't have any real or genuine interest in the subject matter of the case, which i can pretty much guarantee that I do not.)

Anonymous User
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:19 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Ask about a case listed on their bio.


I have yet to find a non-douchetastic way to bring this up, so I stopped expending the energy. Hasn't seemed to hurt me at all.



It's not hard at all. Just say, "I saw you were on such and such a case. I did such and such (some sort of connection to the case)." Then, the interviewer will take the cue and start talking about that case.



To me, that's douche-tastic. (Assuming I don't have any real or genuine interest in the subject matter of the case, which i can pretty much guarantee that I do not.)[/quote

Sometimes it is a genuinely interesting sounding case.

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vamedic03
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby vamedic03 » Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:20 pm

Just ask the interviewer what they're working on. Unless they're working on something that's absolutely bread and butter, ask them to explain it to you. Example - if you're interviewing with an M&A associate and they tell you they're working on due diligence, ask them to explain what it really involves, how they interact with the ibankers who are also doing it, etc. Figure out what interests them and explore that area.

Anonymous User
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 8:04 pm

I like to ask interviewers what motivates them in their job, and why they get up and go to the office every day. I think that it is a very relevant question, and I think we all have unique reasons for putting ourselves through the hellish existence that is LS (well, maybe its just for the boats and hoes, but I digress).

Responses have been, for the most part, highly positive and enlightening--leading to some really great conversations about personal and professional aspirations.

Admittedly, however, some have repleid, "for the money." :?

Anonymous User
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 11:17 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
JPU wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
JPU wrote:I like:

"what are common characteristics you find in successful associates?" then follow-up with examples of how I have those characteristics

Interviewers say that is the one question they never hope to get asked, because it's so fucking stupid

That's odd as many have said "wow that is a really good/tough question"

to be fair all of this talk about good questions / techniques is all speculation as each interview is so individualized

Maybe they say that because they 1) dread answering it and 2) listening to you bullshit about how you have all those characteristics.


Asked this at a v10 screener. Partner told me no one had asked that all day and he thought it was an incredibly useful question. Didn't have any business getting a callback and I did.

Anonymous User
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Sep 08, 2010 11:39 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
JPU wrote:Maybe they say that because they 1) dread answering it and 2) listening to you bullshit about how you have all those characteristics.


Asked this at a v10 screener. Partner told me no one had asked that all day and he thought it was an incredibly useful question. Didn't have any business getting a callback and I did.


+1 I've posed this question in each of my interviews and I landed two V5 callbacks, among others. Most of the time, the question was very well received.

Anonymous User
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Re: Unique questions to ask at CBs

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 09, 2010 12:53 am

There must be a secondary definition of "unique."




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