Usefulness of Informational Interviews?

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Usefulness of Informational Interviews?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jul 29, 2011 5:40 pm

During my judicial internship this summer, I met a few partners in my desired practice area and followed up on the meeting with an email. About a month down the road, I asked if they'd be agreeable to answering some questions via email/phone/in person. They scheduled an informational telephone conference with me and it's coming up. This is essentially my dream job.

Are these kind of meetings generally fruitful in the job search?

What kind of questions should I ask? The same type that I would ask in a more formal job interview?

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

Re: Usefulness of Informational Interviews?

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Jul 29, 2011 7:20 pm

Three key questions I use for any informational interview:

1. How'd you get into your practice?
2. What does your practice entail?
3. Advice for someone who wants to work in _____ practice?

That should fill a half-hour, easy. If it goes well, they'll either get the hint and encourage you to apply to the firm directly, or recommend other attorneys in the field who you should speak with.

DO NOT look at informational interviews as a chance to land a job, or even a job interview, directly. Look at them as a chance to build a network of people in your field. The network can then get you a job... eventually. But for every informational interview you have, you should try to wind up with the name/info for at least one more person in the field.

From the summer before law school until now, I've probably met with or spoken to ~40-50 attorneys in my desired practice area. Now that I'm heading into OCI, many of them are A) giving me advice on which firms to bid on/avoid, B) encouraging me to apply at their own firms, or C) forwarding my resume to other attorneys at other firms which might be hiring.




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