Looking for Interview Tips

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Hadlendale
Posts: 36
Joined: Fri May 27, 2011 2:00 pm

Looking for Interview Tips

Postby Hadlendale » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:35 pm

So when the CSO says "research the firms" what exactly do they mean you should be doing? What type of questions are good to ask your interviewer? What exactly should I know before interviewing with a firm I'd like to work for? I've been doing some research and so far I can't think of any questions other than "will you hire me?!"

$$$$$$
Posts: 221
Joined: Wed Sep 22, 2010 6:08 pm

Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby $$$$$$ » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:37 pm

why would i tell you what you should do to get a job when im competing with you?

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vanwinkle
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Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby vanwinkle » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:42 pm

$$$$$$ wrote:why would i tell you what you should do to get a job when im competing with you?

--ImageRemoved--

Abuse of anon, trolling... yeah, that's an outing and a timeout.

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mths
Posts: 1098
Joined: Tue Nov 02, 2010 11:24 am

Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby mths » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:49 pm

vanwinkle wrote:
$$$$$$ wrote:why would i tell you what you should do to get a job when im competing with you?

--ImageRemoved--

Abuse of anon, trolling... yeah, that's an outing and a timeout.

not anon

you're ridiculous

SchopenhauerFTW
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Joined: Sun Oct 10, 2010 10:22 pm

Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby SchopenhauerFTW » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:51 pm

I think he turned off the anon feature for that user.

Edit: Oh I get it.
Last edited by SchopenhauerFTW on Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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mths
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Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby mths » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:52 pm

SchopenhauerFTW wrote:I think he turned off the anon feature for that user.

I meant I wasn't being anon

I understand now that was difficult to understand

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Lieut Kaffee
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Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby Lieut Kaffee » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:54 pm

Hadlendale wrote:So when the CSO says "research the firms" what exactly do they mean you should be doing? What type of questions are good to ask your interviewer? What exactly should I know before interviewing with a firm I'd like to work for? I've been doing some research and so far I can't think of any questions other than "will you hire me?!"

I'm still refining my own strategy in this regard, but I can say the following: Asking questions that are easily answered on the firm's website or other websites simply for the sake of asking questions is probably worse than asking nothing. So don't be like, "What practice groups does your firm have?"

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vanwinkle
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Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby vanwinkle » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:55 pm

viewtopic.php?f=23&t=130748

Read it. Know it.

Y'all can get back on topic now, hopefully.

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Cupidity
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Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby Cupidity » Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:59 pm

Lieut Kaffee wrote:
Hadlendale wrote:So when the CSO says "research the firms" what exactly do they mean you should be doing? What type of questions are good to ask your interviewer? What exactly should I know before interviewing with a firm I'd like to work for? I've been doing some research and so far I can't think of any questions other than "will you hire me?!"

I'm still refining my own strategy in this regard, but I can say the following: Asking questions that are easily answered on the firm's website or other websites simply for the sake of asking questions is probably worse than asking nothing. So don't be like, "What practice groups does your firm have?"


Not as true as we'd like to think. Banal conversation > awkward silence

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Lieut Kaffee
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Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby Lieut Kaffee » Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:00 pm

Cupidity wrote:
Lieut Kaffee wrote:
Hadlendale wrote:So when the CSO says "research the firms" what exactly do they mean you should be doing? What type of questions are good to ask your interviewer? What exactly should I know before interviewing with a firm I'd like to work for? I've been doing some research and so far I can't think of any questions other than "will you hire me?!"

I'm still refining my own strategy in this regard, but I can say the following: Asking questions that are easily answered on the firm's website or other websites simply for the sake of asking questions is probably worse than asking nothing. So don't be like, "What practice groups does your firm have?"


Not as true as we'd like to think. Banal conversation > awkward silence

I admit there's a tension there, especially if you're not a good conversationalist. I was talking to a lawyer at a reception event who said they sit around and make fun of people who ask canned questions.

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mths
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Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby mths » Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:03 pm

vanwinkle wrote:http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=23&t=130748

Read it. Know it.

Y'all can get back on topic now, hopefully.

whatever

if you know who posts anon you know I've posted a lot of helpful advice in this forum and I use it excessively, however, your ridiculousness when it comes to what is what is not a helpful post is pretty funny

the dude might have deserved an outing but the ban and the fact that you screen the forums so hard that you find a borderline post to ban just furthers the hilarity of your post

just sayin bro and I'll let everyone get back on topic

Hadlendale
Posts: 36
Joined: Fri May 27, 2011 2:00 pm

Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby Hadlendale » Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:04 pm

I've heard that asking about associate life is a good thing to do, but how exactly do you go about that? "What is associate life like at your firm?" I feel like asking questions that are so broad and reaching simply demonstrate that you're treating the interview like a boilerplate sit-down and would turn people off.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby vanwinkle » Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:06 pm

mths wrote:just sayin bro and I'll let everyone get back on topic

Image

Hopefully now everyone will get back on topic.

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kalvano
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Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby kalvano » Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:11 pm

I'm not sure how "great" they are, but I like personal questions about the interviewer's experiences at the firm. Maybe something like "What's your favorite part of working at Winken, Blinken, & Nod?" Hopefully, you'll get a real response.

Keep it short, though. Figure 3-5 good, solid questions and stick with them. You don't need to ask a ton of questions just for the sake of doing so. Unless your questions open up another line of questioning, then pursue that.

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Naked Dude
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Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby Naked Dude » Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:56 pm

mths wrote:
vanwinkle wrote:http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=23&t=130748

Read it. Know it.

Y'all can get back on topic now, hopefully.

whatever

if you know who posts anon you know I've posted a lot of helpful advice in this forum and I use it excessively, however, your ridiculousness when it comes to what is what is not a helpful post is pretty funny

the dude might have deserved an outing but the ban and the fact that you screen the forums so hard that you find a borderline post to ban just furthers the hilarity of your post

just sayin bro and I'll let everyone get back on topic


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nT0OqHr3wHQ

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vanwinkle
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Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby vanwinkle » Tue Jul 19, 2011 12:09 am

Naked Dude wrote:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nT0OqHr3wHQ

Image

NotMyRealName09
Posts: 1394
Joined: Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:50 pm

Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Tue Jul 19, 2011 12:27 am

I had great success with OCI and obtaining callbacks, and the best thing you can do is this:

"What's your practice? What do you like about it? How did you end up doing that?"

Those three questions each lend themselves to two or three follow up questions. BAM, conversation, and that person likes you more than the other 12 interviewees she will see that day, as she will be sick of talking to all these over-achieving law students about their flawless resumes and their boring ass stories of how great they are.

It's basic psychology - people like people who like them. People do not like people who desperately want to be liked and brag. OCI and callback interviews are NOT to show how intelligent you are. They are to make the interviewer decide whether or not you annoy them, or (preferably) make them decide they actually like you.

It even works if there are two interviewers in the room. Let it be organic, but keep getting them to talk about themselves. When the first person wraps up their little life story, just ask, "how about you? What is your practice? What do you like about it? How did you wind up in that field?

It works, and you will learn more about the firm and it's culture through these sorts of conversations than bullshit like how you read on their website that the client comes first. You can burn up a 30 minute call back interview with an individual attorney with this method. I truly think it worked 85% of the time is preventing awkwardness and encouraging conversation flow. The other 15% of the time? Well, not everyone will like you, and some interviewers are socially inept.

The "read the website" advice is prevalent, and it is advisable, but guess what? A lot of your interviewers DO NOT READ THEIR OWN WEBSITE. Why would they? Definitely look it over, but websites are for the sake of clients, not the practitioners, so don't expect to wow them with knowledge that they have an office in San Francisco AND Phoenix, and that their IP practice group is good.

Have the backup questions at hand if things go stale, but to the extent possible, make the interview about your interviewer. Its so unexpected, so contrary to the typical interview where the interviewee spends the whole time puffing themselves up, it makes a difference.

REMEMBER - if you got an OCI interview or a callback, you've passed the pre-screening. From then on, everyone they interview has a comparable resume, so talking about your resume won't distinguish you. Be someone who they could introduce to a client. And clients LOVE to talk about themselves, their business, their successes, and their failures, with someone who is really listening.
Last edited by NotMyRealName09 on Tue Jul 19, 2011 12:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

adonai
Posts: 1033
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2007 9:09 pm

Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby adonai » Tue Jul 19, 2011 12:40 am

^How much about your resume should you talk? Should you only answer questions they ask and leave it at that and then engage them with the reverse interview? Or should you fully blabber about your resume then leave the questions for until they say "any questions?" Just want to know where the fine line is in transitioning.

NotMyRealName09
Posts: 1394
Joined: Mon Nov 09, 2009 5:50 pm

Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Tue Jul 19, 2011 12:49 am

That's tough to answer, and of course each interviewer is different, but here's what I've noticed. Interviewers generally have a few boilerplate resume questions they ask everyone - if they didn't get things rolling, the student would sit there awkwardly waiting for prompting. But those questions will stop at some point. I've literally heard the "Well, do you have any questions for me?" Or more usually, you can almost see them getting bored, trying to think of more questions for you. Then jump in. Save them from not liking you for making them think of filler questions.

Get savvy and interject, like "Yes, I did get the book award in torts, but I read in your profile that you've handled some mass tort litigation. How'd you end up in that field of law?" (Now that actually sounds canned, but I think you know what I mean.)

Just be confident (which is not to say not nervous, I was nervous everytime, interviews are inherently stressful), know your resume got you there, and see if you and that person can banter your way through 20 minutes. You are the BEST! You are BETTER than the rest of the interviewees! You should be chosen! You believe that, right? You deserve this job, right? Good attitude. Now ask them how they wound up in their current practice area, and what they like about it.

adonai
Posts: 1033
Joined: Mon Apr 23, 2007 9:09 pm

Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby adonai » Tue Jul 19, 2011 1:32 am

NotMyRealName09 wrote:That's tough to answer, and of course each interviewer is different, but here's what I've noticed. Interviewers generally have a few boilerplate resume questions they ask everyone - if they didn't get things rolling, the student would sit there awkwardly waiting for prompting. But those questions will stop at some point. I've literally heard the "Well, do you have any questions for me?" Or more usually, you can almost see them getting bored, trying to think of more questions for you. Then jump in. Save them from not liking you for making them think of filler questions.

Get savvy and interject, like "Yes, I did get the book award in torts, but I read in your profile that you've handled some mass tort litigation. How'd you end up in that field of law?" (Now that actually sounds canned, but I think you know what I mean.)

Just be confident (which is not to say not nervous, I was nervous everytime, interviews are inherently stressful), know your resume got you there, and see if you and that person can banter your way through 20 minutes. You are the BEST! You are BETTER than the rest of the interviewees! You should be chosen! You believe that, right? You deserve this job, right? Good attitude. Now ask them how they wound up in their current practice area, and what they like about it.

Awesome, thanks for the advice. Do you think it would be appropriate to interject while talking about your resume? i.e. "Yes, I worked here and did so and so and noticed you also do something in the same practice area. Could you tell me more about that?" I'd think it would be a good, natural way to sparse out their boilerplate questions into a casual flowing convo, but I could also imagine some interviewers getting annoyed because I'm not sticking to the question asked/format. I'd imagine depending on the interviewer they could be extra anal and think that "Boy, this kid doesn't know how to be straight to the point."

Hadlendale
Posts: 36
Joined: Fri May 27, 2011 2:00 pm

Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby Hadlendale » Tue Jul 19, 2011 4:10 am

NotMyRealName09 wrote:I had great success with OCI and obtaining callbacks, and the best thing you can do is this:

"What's your practice? What do you like about it? How did you end up doing that?"

Those three questions each lend themselves to two or three follow up questions. BAM, conversation, and that person likes you more than the other 12 interviewees she will see that day, as she will be sick of talking to all these over-achieving law students about their flawless resumes and their boring ass stories of how great they are.

It's basic psychology - people like people who like them. People do not like people who desperately want to be liked and brag. OCI and callback interviews are NOT to show how intelligent you are. They are to make the interviewer decide whether or not you annoy them, or (preferably) make them decide they actually like you.

It even works if there are two interviewers in the room. Let it be organic, but keep getting them to talk about themselves. When the first person wraps up their little life story, just ask, "how about you? What is your practice? What do you like about it? How did you wind up in that field?

It works, and you will learn more about the firm and it's culture through these sorts of conversations than bullshit like how you read on their website that the client comes first. You can burn up a 30 minute call back interview with an individual attorney with this method. I truly think it worked 85% of the time is preventing awkwardness and encouraging conversation flow. The other 15% of the time? Well, not everyone will like you, and some interviewers are socially inept.

The "read the website" advice is prevalent, and it is advisable, but guess what? A lot of your interviewers DO NOT READ THEIR OWN WEBSITE. Why would they? Definitely look it over, but websites are for the sake of clients, not the practitioners, so don't expect to wow them with knowledge that they have an office in San Francisco AND Phoenix, and that their IP practice group is good.

Have the backup questions at hand if things go stale, but to the extent possible, make the interview about your interviewer. Its so unexpected, so contrary to the typical interview where the interviewee spends the whole time puffing themselves up, it makes a difference.

REMEMBER - if you got an OCI interview or a callback, you've passed the pre-screening. From then on, everyone they interview has a comparable resume, so talking about your resume won't distinguish you. Be someone who they could introduce to a client. And clients LOVE to talk about themselves, their business, their successes, and their failures, with someone who is really listening.



Thank you for this, very helpful.

yung
Posts: 104
Joined: Mon Jun 01, 2009 4:39 pm

Re: Looking for Interview Tips

Postby yung » Mon Aug 15, 2011 11:47 pm

I also have the same question of whether it is fine to answer a resume queston and use that question to lead into something like "I noticed you specialize in this field, how did you get into it?" Would an interviewer typically like that or would they want you to stick to answering the question




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