V15 Partner/OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 23, 2011 2:09 pm

Are there interviewing "styles" that stand out to you, for better or worse? For example, would being naturally light-hearted during interviews or very stoic come off as an overly positive or negative thing?

itbdvorm
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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Tue Aug 23, 2011 3:27 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Are there interviewing "styles" that stand out to you, for better or worse? For example, would being naturally light-hearted during interviews or very stoic come off as an overly positive or negative thing?


I like to think of myself as fun / funny, so someone who takes him or herself too seriously could be awkward (and has been in the past). I think to some degree matching to the interviewer's a good move and taking cues from him or her works well. Being TOO light-hearted or TOO stoic will never work IMHO

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 23, 2011 3:35 pm

Why do firms preselect someone and then reject them because of grades?

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 23, 2011 3:44 pm

How do or would you respond to an applicant who has good credentials, but is overweight? Is that a negative?

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Tue Aug 23, 2011 3:59 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Why do firms preselect someone and then reject them because of grades?


I doubt they do. I've only interviewed at schools that we can't preselect at (so I'm getting your grades for the first time at the interview). At other schools I believe we have a pre-baked cutoff and/or are subject to some limited lottery. But we do have callback limitations at every school, so even if you're preselected to be above our grade cut you may not wow us enough with the "full package" to beat out the kid w/better grades

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Tue Aug 23, 2011 4:03 pm

Anonymous User wrote:How do or would you respond to an applicant who has good credentials, but is overweight? Is that a negative?


How overweight are we talking? Does the person dress/comport him or herself well? Not an active negative by any means, but I suppose it could have a subtle effect on people.

I'd say attractiveness, fitness, composure, manners, etc., have a relatively similar effect on interviewers as they would on the population at large. But charm generally wins out as the most important characteristic.

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 23, 2011 9:10 pm

Can you tell us the the three most common (but still reasonable/likable) answers you get on "why law school?" or "why a lawyer?"

Honestly for myself, I don't have an attractive story to tell about why I want to become a lawyer. For me, its just seems like a good fit for me.(with my abilities aptitude and character) I could have gone to graduate school but I didn't like the prospect of becoming a professor or some researcher of some sort. And frankly, there is good pay in this profession.(but with long hours, I know)

But I can't say that in interviews.

So I want to know what recruiters actually like to hear during interviews on that issue.

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby smittytron3k » Tue Aug 23, 2011 9:23 pm

Not OP, but "I thought about going to graduate school in [philosophy/english/astrophysics/underwater basket weaving] but had very specific and well-thought-out reasons for deciding to become a lawyer instead" is a fine answer to that question. What you need to do is to emphasize that you HAVE made a thoughtful and deliberate choice to go to law school, and to make it clear that you are not a flight risk. But the fact that you seriously considered options other than law school is not something you have to hide, not by any means.

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 23, 2011 10:02 pm

How do you suggest dealing with interviewers who ramble on and on, taking up precious interview time, without giving the interviewee a chance to jump in with a new question/change of subject or any sort of response. I guess ask less open-ended questions is one option. I tried to pick up on things she was saying and jump in to get myself talking again, but there was no opportunity; it would have just come of as blatant interrupting.

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Aug 23, 2011 10:22 pm

You interview a kid who is a CCN transfer that was top 5 students at his old school. His old school is a top-35 school, but not one you have ever interviewed at, so you don't know what to think of how he did as a 1L. How does this kid rate compared to the others you interview? Does everything ride on the interview itself?

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 24, 2011 2:35 am

itbdvorm wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:If you're interviewing a 3L who's applying for clerkships, now, and, knowing he won't hear whether he's got one until 9/15, you say, "keep us abreast of whether you get a clerkship," does that mean you're not rejecting him, since that's happening three whole weeks from now and it would make no sense to ask for information three weeks out from someone you plan to reject, or are you just being polite/could you just be being polite? This happened to me this morning, so I was wondering.


wow. no idea. maybe they can't hire you now but they might want to bring you in post-clerkship?


Aren't there a couple possibilities? One, the 3L callback process is very slow - they have no need to know, this second, whether they're hiring a guy who's going to clerk anyway through 2013, if not potentially 2014 - so it could mean I'm not rejected and they'd like to know where I end up. They'd give an offer pre-clerkship, but I wouldn't actually be doing anything there, of course, until I'm done clerking. Two, she's on the fence and would recommend a callback if the clerkship process goes well. After all, for all she knows I just might get no clerkship, and this is a firm where practically everyone clerks, so that would possibly be grounds for a ding.

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:12 am

Does your firm actively try and place students they are more likely to hire in a better CB spot? I am curious because some firms I have CBs with scheduled immediately and have called or e-mailed several times with additional plans and others have not contacted me since I made plans. I know that is weird, but when one firm states earlier is better and lets you schedule early and others are like mid-September we have available. The firms showing me love are also much more selective then the ones not doing so.

itbdvorm
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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:41 am

Anonymous User wrote:Can you tell us the the three most common (but still reasonable/likable) answers you get on "why law school?" or "why a lawyer?"

Honestly for myself, I don't have an attractive story to tell about why I want to become a lawyer. For me, its just seems like a good fit for me.(with my abilities aptitude and character) I could have gone to graduate school but I didn't like the prospect of becoming a professor or some researcher of some sort. And frankly, there is good pay in this profession.(but with long hours, I know)

But I can't say that in interviews.

So I want to know what recruiters actually like to hear during interviews on that issue.


Why can't you say that? Sounds perfectly reasonable to me.

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:42 am

smittytron3k wrote:Not OP, but "I thought about going to graduate school in [philosophy/english/astrophysics/underwater basket weaving] but had very specific and well-thought-out reasons for deciding to become a lawyer instead" is a fine answer to that question. What you need to do is to emphasize that you HAVE made a thoughtful and deliberate choice to go to law school, and to make it clear that you are not a flight risk. But the fact that you seriously considered options other than law school is not something you have to hide, not by any means.


Agreed

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:44 am

Anonymous User wrote:How do you suggest dealing with interviewers who ramble on and on, taking up precious interview time, without giving the interviewee a chance to jump in with a new question/change of subject or any sort of response. I guess ask less open-ended questions is one option. I tried to pick up on things she was saying and jump in to get myself talking again, but there was no opportunity; it would have just come of as blatant interrupting.


People like talking about themselves. Not necessarily a bad thing.

Better that they talk themselves out and you stay engaged then you try to seize control of the interview

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:46 am

Anonymous User wrote:You interview a kid who is a CCN transfer that was top 5 students at his old school. His old school is a top-35 school, but not one you have ever interviewed at, so you don't know what to think of how he did as a 1L. How does this kid rate compared to the others you interview? Does everything ride on the interview itself?


Probably, yeah. We have some number of callbacks available at each school - presumably the kid is above the grade cut at his old school (and will talk to recruiting staff about what his grades mean). But it will all depend - is that a school where we would normally a bunch of people / traditional feeder, or is it a school we take one kid from every 5 years?

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:48 am

Anonymous User wrote:
itbdvorm wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:If you're interviewing a 3L who's applying for clerkships, now, and, knowing he won't hear whether he's got one until 9/15, you say, "keep us abreast of whether you get a clerkship," does that mean you're not rejecting him, since that's happening three whole weeks from now and it would make no sense to ask for information three weeks out from someone you plan to reject, or are you just being polite/could you just be being polite? This happened to me this morning, so I was wondering.


wow. no idea. maybe they can't hire you now but they might want to bring you in post-clerkship?


Aren't there a couple possibilities? One, the 3L callback process is very slow - they have no need to know, this second, whether they're hiring a guy who's going to clerk anyway through 2013, if not potentially 2014 - so it could mean I'm not rejected and they'd like to know where I end up. They'd give an offer pre-clerkship, but I wouldn't actually be doing anything there, of course, until I'm done clerking. Two, she's on the fence and would recommend a callback if the clerkship process goes well. After all, for all she knows I just might get no clerkship, and this is a firm where practically everyone clerks, so that would possibly be grounds for a ding.


Not sure. But (a) don't most judges have issues with people w/open offers working for them and (b) the 3L offer market is pretty dead as far as I know, absent superstardom (especially at a place where most people clerk anyway). Could be wrong though.

itbdvorm
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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:49 am

Anonymous User wrote:Does your firm actively try and place students they are more likely to hire in a better CB spot? I am curious because some firms I have CBs with scheduled immediately and have called or e-mailed several times with additional plans and others have not contacted me since I made plans. I know that is weird, but when one firm states earlier is better and lets you schedule early and others are like mid-September we have available. The firms showing me love are also much more selective then the ones not doing so.


Not sure. Some could just be timing, people filling up more quickly. Some could also just be firms having better recruiting programs.

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby sunynp » Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:53 am

Given what you know and have experienced in the legal market over the past few years, what would you advise about going to law school? Would you advise only go to the top14 or higher, even if you have to take on debt? Or would you advise a scholarship at a more regional school? I guess my question is: where is a person more likely to get a job? you know the grade cutoffs your firm uses, so which gives the best odds of being hired?

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 24, 2011 11:11 am

I had a sharp downward grade trend during the Spring of my 1L year. Found out recently that I had mono for all of that semester. Can I bring this up during interviews? Should I tell recruiting managers etc.? Thanks

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Wed Aug 24, 2011 11:11 am

sunynp wrote:Given what you know and have experienced in the legal market over the past few years, what would you advise about going to law school? Would you advise only go to the top14 or higher, even if you have to take on debt? Or would you advise a scholarship at a more regional school? I guess my question is: where is a person more likely to get a job? you know the grade cutoffs your firm uses, so which gives the best odds of being hired?


Top 14 for sure, unless you definitely want to work in the "more regional" market. Fair or not, the fact is that right now you'll need to be top 5% (or possibly top 5) to have equivalent options as you would at T14 median.

There's probably a little more expansion than T14 for specific regional areas - UT for Texas, UCLA/USC for SoCal, and going further down the line, Vandy for the South (maybe), GWU for DC (maybe), Illinois for Chicago (and maybe ND/IU), BU/BC for Boston, Fordham for NYC, etc. But even at these places you'll generally need to have substantially better grades on a curved system to do as well as you would coming out of a better-ranked school (even at the median). Given the grade curves and the number of people making similar choices as you, I think the probability of you performing better than all but 5 people at a lower-ranked school is lower than the probability of you performing better than half the people at a school where people have similar numbers as you. But that's just one man's opinion.

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Wed Aug 24, 2011 11:12 am

Anonymous User wrote:I had a sharp downward grade trend during the Spring of my 1L year. Found out recently that I had mono for all of that semester. Can I bring this up during interviews? Should I tell recruiting managers etc.? Thanks


Sucks. No idea how you bring it up smoothly during interviews but I'd try, and would tell recruiting managers. May not be enough but worth a shot.

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 24, 2011 11:48 am

well, I (being the 3L clerkship prospect) have the grades of a superstar, top 1% of a t14 school to which this firm has a lot of ties, but little else that's superstar-ish. And they did call me and bring me in, this wasn't a lottery situated. So i'm somewhat optimistic.

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby itbdvorm » Wed Aug 24, 2011 1:50 pm

Anonymous User wrote:well, I (being the 3L clerkship prospect) have the grades of a superstar, top 1% of a t14 school to which this firm has a lot of ties, but little else that's superstar-ish. And they did call me and bring me in, this wasn't a lottery situated. So i'm somewhat optimistic.


No, that's pretty superstar-y. Why looking to change from prior firm? Or is the idea that you'd do a 3L summer associate position w/them pre-clerk?

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Re: V15 OCI Interviewer Answering Questions...

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Aug 24, 2011 2:40 pm

OP, I am an evening student in a major market T3 school and just started my second year. I finished my first year in the top 10% and made LR while working full-time in a small medical malpractice defense firm. As an evening student, how will I be perceived by potential employers during OCI?




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