1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
Anonymous User
Posts: 273140
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 08, 2010 3:01 am

Hi all—I’m a 1L at a school ranked 15-30 and I was just invited to a screening interview at a biglaw firm in a secondary market. What kinds of things should I do to prepare?

They’ve said they’re not sure if they’re hiring 1Ls this summer, but it’s hard not to be kind of excited about this…I figure a foot in the door is worth something, right? Does anyone have any insight as to what this means? Like I said, I’m trying not to get ahead of myself, but I’m the only 1L at my school I know of who has a screening interview at a large firm already.

User avatar
DoubleChecks
Posts: 2333
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 4:35 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby DoubleChecks » Wed Dec 08, 2010 3:08 am

Anonymous User wrote:Hi all—I’m a 1L at a school ranked 15-30 and I was just invited to a screening interview at a biglaw firm in a secondary market. What kinds of things should I do to prepare?

They’ve said they’re not sure if they’re hiring 1Ls this summer, but it’s hard not to be kind of excited about this…I figure a foot in the door is worth something, right? Does anyone have any insight as to what this means? Like I said, I’m trying not to get ahead of myself, but I’m the only 1L at my school I know of who has a screening interview at a large firm already.


first off, congrats!

second off, i dont think its a screening interview -- probably more like a callback interview (since for 1Ls they dont do the whole screening bit...who who knows, this firm might have its own program and do it its own way).

if its a screening interview, iunno 20min long? but if it is a CB as id imagine, then you'd meet w/ a bunch of attorneys -- diff practice areas, diff ranks of seniority. sometimes more than 1 at a time. they'll ask a bunch of questions, whole thing will last a few hrs, and you'll get a free lunch at a really nice restaurant to boot (or coffee if its an afternoon thing maybe).

questions you can probably find online; so many they can ask -- some big ones off the top of my head: why law school? why this firm? why the practice area you're interested in? some challenge you once faced at x job. 3 strengths/3 weaknesses. etc.

good luck

Anonymous User
Posts: 273140
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 08, 2010 3:11 am

DoubleChecks wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Hi all—I’m a 1L at a school ranked 15-30 and I was just invited to a screening interview at a biglaw firm in a secondary market. What kinds of things should I do to prepare?

They’ve said they’re not sure if they’re hiring 1Ls this summer, but it’s hard not to be kind of excited about this…I figure a foot in the door is worth something, right? Does anyone have any insight as to what this means? Like I said, I’m trying not to get ahead of myself, but I’m the only 1L at my school I know of who has a screening interview at a large firm already.


first off, congrats!

second off, i dont think its a screening interview -- probably more like a callback interview (since for 1Ls they dont do the whole screening bit...who who knows, this firm might have its own program and do it its own way).

if its a screening interview, iunno 20min long? but if it is a CB as id imagine, then you'd meet w/ a bunch of attorneys -- diff practice areas, diff ranks of seniority. sometimes more than 1 at a time. they'll ask a bunch of questions, whole thing will last a few hrs, and you'll get a free lunch at a really nice restaurant to boot (or coffee if its an afternoon thing maybe).

questions you can probably find online; so many they can ask -- some big ones off the top of my head: why law school? why this firm? why the practice area you're interested in? some challenge you once faced at x job. 3 strengths/3 weaknesses. etc.

good luck



OP here: Thank you. Yeah, I'm not sure how to classify it. They said it'd be a lunch with the hiring partner and one other person from the firm.

Kretzy
Posts: 1431
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2009 5:11 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby Kretzy » Wed Dec 08, 2010 3:31 am

Anonymous User wrote:
OP here: Thank you. Yeah, I'm not sure how to classify it. They said it'd be a lunch with the hiring partner and one other person from the firm.


Let me echo the congrats: that sounds a lot like a callback (granted, I'm a 1L...so I could be wrong).

Assuming you know the hiring partner's name, I'd research his practice group a little bit and see if there's some high-profile stuff they've been doing recently.

User avatar
Kohinoor
Posts: 2756
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2008 5:51 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby Kohinoor » Wed Dec 08, 2010 10:40 am

poppers

User avatar
underdawg
Posts: 1131
Joined: Wed Oct 24, 2007 1:15 am

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby underdawg » Wed Dec 08, 2010 12:32 pm

my school's OCS stressed this point more than almost anything: DONT ORDER SPAGHETTI!!!!!!!!111

2LLLL
Posts: 249
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2010 12:38 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby 2LLLL » Wed Dec 08, 2010 1:40 pm

Be ready to talk about anything and everything on your resume, as well as the legal issues raised in your writing sample. Also, have a good answer to why law school, what area of law, why your school, favorite class, why this secondary market etc...

Anonymous User
Posts: 273140
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 08, 2010 2:20 pm

I contacted a partner at biglaw who says I should come to the firm, chat with him and "and meet the others." What kind of interview is that?

Aqualibrium
Posts: 2011
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 5:57 am

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby Aqualibrium » Wed Dec 08, 2010 2:24 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I contacted a partner at biglaw who says I should come to the firm, chat with him and "and meet the others." What kind of interview is that?


It's an "I like you, why don't you stop by and we'll see if you can meet a few people without tripping all over yourself" interview.
Last edited by Aqualibrium on Wed Dec 08, 2010 3:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Crim
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2008 8:33 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby Crim » Wed Dec 08, 2010 2:24 pm

2LLLL wrote:Be ready to talk about anything and everything on your resume


80% of my interviewers asked their first question about a line in my hobbies section. Don't discount the importance of this section in distinguishing yourself. If you put something out of the ordinary in that section, they'll ask you about it, and you should have a great story to tell.

SpiteFence
Posts: 131
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2010 12:26 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby SpiteFence » Wed Dec 08, 2010 2:25 pm

Be prepared to have REALLY good reasons why you want to be in the secondary market long term. Read the local newspaper and business magazines before the interview to have a few talking points.

Also, even if you get rejected, stay in touch with these people. I had a 1L callback/rejection that turned into a 2L callback/offer.

Good luck!

Anonymous User
Posts: 273140
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 08, 2010 7:14 pm


80% of my interviewers asked their first question about a line in my hobbies section. Don't discount the importance of this section in distinguishing yourself. If you put something out of the ordinary in that section, they'll ask you about it, and you should have a great story to tell.




Exactly- I got more questions about playing rugby in college than about my summer internship. Probably because interviewers would rather hear about something unique than about how you "learned a lot about legal research" and "even got to write sections in a few briefs."

Even better if you have a self-deprecating (sp?) joke to tie in to your hobby. Mine was that I played football through high school and rugby through college and my first major injury was in the law school flag football tournament.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273140
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Dec 10, 2010 2:08 am

Don't want to hijack the thread, but I was offered an interview at large firm in my home market. They said I will be going to lunch with a few attorneys and I'm worried I might end up being awkwardly silent/unable to think of interesting topics of conversation. Does anyone who has experience with these lunches know if it's more the attorneys asking questions/getting to know you, or are you expected to maintain the conversation throughout lunch. Obviously I know I can't just awkwardly and silently sit there.

005618502
Posts: 2577
Joined: Thu May 06, 2010 10:56 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby 005618502 » Fri Dec 10, 2010 2:21 am

When asked your strengths and weaknesses what do you say? especially weakness. its hard you dont want to give the whole "I workk to hard" or something stupid, but you dont want to say something like "I am a major slacker/I procrastinate alot"

User avatar
Kohinoor
Posts: 2756
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2008 5:51 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby Kohinoor » Fri Dec 10, 2010 2:30 am

AssumptionRequired wrote:When asked your strengths and weaknesses what do you say? especially weakness. its hard you dont want to give the whole "I workk to hard" or something stupid, but you dont want to say something like "I am a major slacker/I procrastinate alot"

I said that my business development skills weren't that great. no offer.

005618502
Posts: 2577
Joined: Thu May 06, 2010 10:56 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby 005618502 » Fri Dec 10, 2010 3:06 am

Kohinoor wrote:
AssumptionRequired wrote:When asked your strengths and weaknesses what do you say? especially weakness. its hard you dont want to give the whole "I workk to hard" or something stupid, but you dont want to say something like "I am a major slacker/I procrastinate alot"

I said that my business development skills weren't that great. no offer.


Hopefully that wasnt the reason.... but congrats on getting a 1L interview in the first place.

What about others?

Crim
Posts: 22
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2008 8:33 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby Crim » Fri Dec 10, 2010 4:29 am

AssumptionRequired wrote:
Kohinoor wrote:
AssumptionRequired wrote:When asked your strengths and weaknesses what do you say? especially weakness. its hard you dont want to give the whole "I workk to hard" or something stupid, but you dont want to say something like "I am a major slacker/I procrastinate alot"

I said that my business development skills weren't that great. no offer.


Hopefully that wasnt the reason.... but congrats on getting a 1L interview in the first place.

What about others?


To quote the venerable Robert McNamara: "Never answer the question that is asked of you. Answer the question that you wish had been asked of you." One strategy that I've used is to talk about a weakness I used to have, and then describe how I overcame it. That way, you don't have to pretend to be perfect, but you also avoid digging your own grave. It's not exactly answering the question, but I've never been called on it.

It's a stupid question though, and I was only confronted with it once this recruiting season, so hopefully you won't have to deal with it.

2LLLL
Posts: 249
Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2010 12:38 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby 2LLLL » Fri Dec 10, 2010 11:20 am

To quote the venerable Robert McNamara: "Never answer the question that is asked of you. Answer the question that you wish had been asked of you." One strategy that I've used is to talk about a weakness I used to have, and then describe how I overcame it. That way, you don't have to pretend to be perfect, but you also avoid digging your own grave. It's not exactly answering the question, but I've never been called on it.

It's a stupid question though, and I was only confronted with it once this recruiting season, so hopefully you won't have to deal with it.



TCR.

I also never got the weakness question, but had I gotten it my answer would be that sometimes I get nervous while public speaking, but I went to some Toastmasters meetings and try to speak up in class as much as possible to practice and become more comfortable. The question is less about your weakness and more about what you've done to overcome it.

Aqualibrium
Posts: 2011
Joined: Tue Feb 24, 2009 5:57 am

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby Aqualibrium » Fri Dec 10, 2010 2:46 pm

Strengths/Weaknesses is a shitty question that only shitty or inexperienced interviewers ask. The one time I got asked that question, it was by someone who'd only even been on the job for 1 week, and I could tell by looking at him that he didn't even know what he was looking for.

005618502
Posts: 2577
Joined: Thu May 06, 2010 10:56 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby 005618502 » Fri Dec 10, 2010 4:23 pm

That is actually good to hear, because it would be hard to answer without coming out looking like an overconfident ass or someone with undesirable traits lol

09042014
Posts: 18282
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:47 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby 09042014 » Sat Dec 11, 2010 7:24 pm

There are one 1L screening interviews.

User avatar
ntugwater
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Dec 14, 2010 3:37 am

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby ntugwater » Tue Dec 14, 2010 5:04 am

Anonymous User wrote:Don't want to hijack the thread, but I was offered an interview at large firm in my home market. They said I will be going to lunch with a few attorneys and I'm worried I might end up being awkwardly silent/unable to think of interesting topics of conversation. Does anyone who has experience with these lunches know if it's more the attorneys asking questions/getting to know you, or are you expected to maintain the conversation throughout lunch. Obviously I know I can't just awkwardly and silently sit there.


It all depends on the individuals. I don't know what to suggest, but being able to have a conversation is key. Come up with some questions on various topics such as the culture of the firm, the type of work, their career paths, whether employees socialize outside of work, time for hobbies, etc... but you're really going to just throw yourself in these situations and become more spontaneous if you want to impress them and make yourself seem desirable

Aqualibrium wrote:Strengths/Weaknesses is a shitty question that only shitty or inexperienced interviewers ask. The one time I got asked that question, it was by someone who'd only even been on the job for 1 week, and I could tell by looking at him that he didn't even know what he was looking for.

The strengths q doesn't tell much, but the weakness question can range from very revealing answers (both positive and negative) to useless answers; it's still valuable and I've been in plenty of interviews with good, experienced interviewers where the question or some variation has been asked

User avatar
20160810
Posts: 19648
Joined: Fri May 02, 2008 1:18 pm

Re: 1L Biglaw Screening Interview Question

Postby 20160810 » Tue Dec 14, 2010 5:10 am

If the person interviewing you is under 40, just go in there and act like you're trying to make friends with them (only a weird friendship where you talk about your resume a lot). This is, in a nutshell, the strategy which worked best for me in interviews.




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.