Bad Interview Moments

(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.
DJ JD
Posts: 152
Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2015 9:58 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby DJ JD » Thu Sep 03, 2015 5:21 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Screener interview:

Interviewer: so what kind of practice are you interested in?

Me: I'm interested in transactional IP, but also generally corporate.

Interviewer: but if you had to pick one, which?

Me: well I guess transactional IP.

Interviewer: I'm going to be honest, we pretty much only do that in [other office]

(Well then why did your website say otherwise???)

No offer.


Always go corporate. Alwaysssss.

User avatar
star fox
Posts: 13617
Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2013 4:13 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby star fox » Thu Sep 03, 2015 5:22 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Confession:

Two CBs in one day, in the 8th or 9th interview of the day my brain shut down. Interview w/ Partner (who btw went on to tell me the "most important characteristic" you can have as a lawyer is to "take your work home with you and think about it constantly").

Ask partner what factors have led them to join the firm, and then what has made them stay w/ the firm. Partner answers. Brain dead me follows up with the EXACT same question.

Response: "You just asked that." Silence.

This all occurred two minutes into the interview. A long 28 minutes followed

Hey interviewers ask that to me (in a "your answer was bullshit" kinda way). Fair game!

DJ JD
Posts: 152
Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2015 9:58 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby DJ JD » Thu Sep 03, 2015 5:24 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I actually tried to back my way into an answer, saying that, while I couldn't think of a character, I know what kind of traits the character would have. I said he would be genuine, friendly, patient, enthusiastic, etc. And I kind of made light of whole thing by noting how, given those characteristics, it was essentially impossible to peg them to a particular movie character. Yet the D-bag still was like "if you think of someone, email me."


WTF, why didn't you just BS a random character in the first place. I'm pretty sure the first character you could think of would be a better answer. Either you name someone really good... great; that's a win. Or you name someone whose a piece of shit, and you made a joke. As long as you didn't say Bill Cosby or something, you'd be fine, and he isn't even a movie character.

User avatar
El Pollito
party fowl
Posts: 17870
Joined: Tue Jul 16, 2013 2:11 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby El Pollito » Thu Sep 03, 2015 5:35 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Screener interview:

Interviewer: so what kind of practice are you interested in?

Me: I'm interested in transactional IP, but also generally corporate.

Interviewer: but if you had to pick one, which?

Me: well I guess transactional IP.

Interviewer: I'm going to be honest, we pretty much only do that in [other office]

(Well then why did your website say otherwise???)

No offer.

a lot of firms never update their websites, so they often no longer accurately reflect the practice. i know mine doesn't and there's basically no way to figure out what we do without talking to someone before interviewing. fun, right?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273117
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 03, 2015 5:50 pm

Screener asks behavioral question. I panic internally but manage to embellish a somewhat related story.

"well you seem to have a really great grasp of xyz experience, or you're a really great bullshitter."

me: "the former i hope... but not 100% sure"

--> CB

User avatar
iamgeorgebush
Posts: 851
Joined: Sat Oct 05, 2013 3:57 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby iamgeorgebush » Thu Sep 03, 2015 5:56 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Screener interview:

Interviewer: so what kind of practice are you interested in?

Me: I'm interested in transactional IP, but also generally corporate.

Interviewer: but if you had to pick one, which?

Me: well I guess transactional IP.

Interviewer: I'm going to be honest, we pretty much only do that in [other office]

(Well then why did your website say otherwise???)

No offer.

easy mistake to make (i've made it), and it goes to show you really can't rely on a firm's practice area descriptions on its website website for an accurate depiction of the kind of work the office actually does. firm websites are marketing tools, so of course they will say the firm is expert in everything (regardless of whether this is true). if you want to do a particular type of work like IP transactions, look up the partners at the office and see how many of them specialize in that practice. if the number is low (or worse yet, zero), then do not tell them you want to practice in that area. (one way to tell if the partner specializes in the practice is by looking at her representative matters list on her bio or, better yet, press releases for recent deals.)

User avatar
PennBull
Posts: 15371
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2011 4:59 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby PennBull » Thu Sep 03, 2015 6:05 pm

DJ JD wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Screener interview:

Interviewer: so what kind of practice are you interested in?

Me: I'm interested in transactional IP, but also generally corporate.

Interviewer: but if you had to pick one, which?

Me: well I guess transactional IP.

Interviewer: I'm going to be honest, we pretty much only do that in [other office]

(Well then why did your website say otherwise???)

No offer.


Always go corporate. Alwaysssss.


this.

User avatar
PennBull
Posts: 15371
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2011 4:59 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby PennBull » Thu Sep 03, 2015 6:05 pm

El Pollito wrote:a lot of firms never update their websites, so they often no longer accurately reflect the practice. i know mine doesn't and there's basically no way to figure out what we do without talking to someone before interviewing. fun, right?


I don't know why this isn't common knowledge. The only thing you should rely on firm websites for are their recent news releases for deals/cases

Anonymous User
Posts: 273117
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 03, 2015 6:20 pm

That's crazy. Thankfully my firm does a very good job of keeping their website up to date. They actually rank the attorney's listed practice areas/sub-specialties on the site based on how much of each type of work they do. The bios even go into depth about what an attorney's niche is. Plus you can see a pretty up to date list of representative transactions/representations.

Here, it'd be pretty hard to mess up what someone does, but looking at other sites, I see how that's an easy mistake to make.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273117
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 03, 2015 6:41 pm

DJ JD wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:I actually tried to back my way into an answer, saying that, while I couldn't think of a character, I know what kind of traits the character would have. I said he would be genuine, friendly, patient, enthusiastic, etc. And I kind of made light of whole thing by noting how, given those characteristics, it was essentially impossible to peg them to a particular movie character. Yet the D-bag still was like "if you think of someone, email me."


WTF, why didn't you just BS a random character in the first place. I'm pretty sure the first character you could think of would be a better answer. Either you name someone really good... great; that's a win. Or you name someone whose a piece of shit, and you made a joke. As long as you didn't say Bill Cosby or something, you'd be fine, and he isn't even a movie character.


I guess I just sort of blanked. I was flipping through all my fav movies in my head, realizing I couldn't possibly say anyone from those movies. Ended up overthinking and just drawing a blank.

hdunlop
Posts: 461
Joined: Mon Feb 10, 2014 2:14 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby hdunlop » Thu Sep 03, 2015 6:42 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Screener asks behavioral question. I panic internally but manage to embellish a somewhat related story.

"well you seem to have a really great grasp of xyz experience, or you're a really great bullshitter."

me: "the former i hope... but not 100% sure"

--> CB


TCR: "Both."

User avatar
star fox
Posts: 13617
Joined: Fri Feb 01, 2013 4:13 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby star fox » Thu Sep 03, 2015 6:47 pm

Do any movies feature a diligent corporate attorney who chugs away 80 hours a week?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273117
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 03, 2015 7:06 pm

This actually happened to me lol:

Me: I'm so excited to meet you since you're one of the associates who does X.
Interviewer: Oh, we don't really do much of that here anymore since the economy and whatnot. You do keep up with economy trends, right?


No offer :lol: :lol: :lol:

User avatar
L’Étranger
Posts: 315
Joined: Thu Feb 23, 2012 4:27 am

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby L’Étranger » Thu Sep 03, 2015 7:22 pm

TheoO wrote:Oh and my friend forgot his padfolio in the hotel room, so he went back to get it. He knocked several times but decided to go in since the door wasn't fully closed. When he picked up his padfolio, he saw that the partner was taking a dump in the bathroom and didn't close the bathroom door. No cb.


Awesome

Anonymous User
Posts: 273117
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 03, 2015 7:32 pm

I did a screener interview for a law prof position. They sent the names of the profs that would be on the call, so I read up on them. During the call, I asked about one professor's work in some subject, and the prof said, "umm, that's actually [the name of a different prof on the call]." Everyone laughed--and not a "we're laughing with you" sort of laugh. I wasn't going to get the job either way, but I was a little bitter about it for a few weeks.

User avatar
baal hadad
Posts: 3168
Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2014 2:57 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby baal hadad » Thu Sep 03, 2015 7:34 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Interviewer: What movie character would you say you are most like.

Me: Well, I sort of use movies as an escape, to see the types of characters we can never be. For example, no one could ever be as brave as some of the heroes you see in these movies. So I love movies precisely because I could never do or be like the people I'm watching (I'm thinking that was a good enough brush away to get him to move on).

Interviewer: Nah, I'd like to hear what movie character you are most like.

Me: Um, I'm not really sure.

Interviewer: Ok, well how about you email me once you have an answer.

Me: Uh, ok.

Sgt Barnes from platoon

User avatar
rpupkin
Posts: 3864
Joined: Mon Dec 09, 2013 10:32 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby rpupkin » Thu Sep 03, 2015 7:50 pm

drmguy wrote:
luckyme wrote:"Do you have any questions for us?"

"I think your website pretty much covered everything."

I prefaced a really in depth question with something like this. The interviewer didn't know the answer to any of my questions. I learned that the conventional advice of "don't ask something you can find on the website" doesn't apply to firms with really detailed websites. No CB

Aside from having to proof my bio page, I have not looked at a single page on my firm's web site since joining the firm. I think the same is true of most attorneys.

Seriously, I often learn things about my own firm when an interviewee asks me a question about something they've read on the firm's web site. Typical conversation:

Interview candidate: "I saw you guys were awarded X firm of the year by Z magazine for your work in Y. Are you guys getting more Y cases these days?"

Me: "Really? Cool! Uh, yeah, our Y practice is going strong."

User avatar
PennBull
Posts: 15371
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2011 4:59 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby PennBull » Fri Sep 04, 2015 1:36 pm

so tired of candidates putting "[LANGUAGE]: basic" on their resume like we give a flying actual fuck about your ability to ask someone where the fucking toilet is in indonesian

User avatar
WashingtonIrving
Posts: 15
Joined: Tue Dec 09, 2014 3:28 am

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby WashingtonIrving » Fri Sep 04, 2015 6:16 pm

Callback interview:
Me: So what do you do?
Partner: You don't know?
Me: No.
Partner: Did you read my bio?
Me: No.
Partner: You didn't?
Me: No.
Partner: Really.
(awkward silence)

User avatar
Companion Cube
Posts: 810
Joined: Thu Jul 30, 2015 12:21 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby Companion Cube » Fri Sep 04, 2015 6:18 pm

WashingtonIrving wrote:Callback interview:
Me: So what do you do?
Partner: You don't know?
Me: No.
Partner: Did you read my bio?
Me: No.
Partner: You didn't?
Me: No.
Partner: Really.
(awkward silence)


I'm sorry you had a bad interview but just how did you think that would play out?

NycReturn
Posts: 13
Joined: Sun Aug 26, 2012 6:11 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby NycReturn » Fri Sep 04, 2015 6:27 pm

flawschoolkid wrote:
benwyatt wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Interviewer: What movie character would you say you are most like.

Me: Well, I sort of use movies as an escape, to see the types of characters we can never be. For example, no one could ever be as brave as some of the heroes you see in these movies. So I love movies precisely because I could never do or be like the people I'm watching (I'm thinking that was a good enough brush away to get him to move on).

Interviewer: Nah, I'd like to hear what movie character you are most like.

Me: Um, I'm not really sure.

Interviewer: Ok, well how about you email me once you have an answer.

Me: Uh, ok.

Brutal.


Should have Harvey Specter, obviously.


Andy Dufresne

User avatar
Pneumonia
Posts: 1642
Joined: Sun Jul 29, 2012 3:05 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby Pneumonia » Fri Sep 04, 2015 6:31 pm

rpupkin wrote:
drmguy wrote:
luckyme wrote:"Do you have any questions for us?"

"I think your website pretty much covered everything."

I prefaced a really in depth question with something like this. The interviewer didn't know the answer to any of my questions. I learned that the conventional advice of "don't ask something you can find on the website" doesn't apply to firms with really detailed websites. No CB

Aside from having to proof my bio page, I have not looked at a single page on my firm's web site since joining the firm. I think the same is true of most attorneys.

Seriously, I often learn things about my own firm when an interviewee asks me a question about something they've read on the firm's web site. Typical conversation:

Interview candidate: "I saw you guys were awarded X firm of the year by Z magazine for your work in Y. Are you guys getting more Y cases these days?"

Me: "Really? Cool! Uh, yeah, our Y practice is going strong."

This is pretty evident from a candidate's perspective as well. We had a "mock" interview program at my school last year and, not one, but two interviewers provided bios that contained multiple and flagrant spelling errors (one even had his name misspelled within his own bio- think "Mr. Simth is particularly accomplished in..." And these were essentially just screenshots from the firm website.

Stakes were low so I called the interviewers' attention to the mistakes. They responded predictably, and I did not do the same during actual OCI (even though errors were equally abundant).

User avatar
WashingtonIrving
Posts: 15
Joined: Tue Dec 09, 2014 3:28 am

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby WashingtonIrving » Fri Sep 04, 2015 6:56 pm

Companion Cube wrote:
WashingtonIrving wrote:Callback interview:
Me: So what do you do?
Partner: You don't know?
Me: No.
Partner: Did you read my bio?
Me: No.
Partner: You didn't?
Me: No.
Partner: Really.
(awkward silence)


I'm sorry you had a bad interview but just how did you think that would play out?


I mean, there are several ways that an interviewer can handle that without making things awkward. She could just answer the question in the first place, for example. If an interviewer asks me, "So, what did you do this summer?" I don't generally respond, "You don't know? Did you read my resume?"

User avatar
baal hadad
Posts: 3168
Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2014 2:57 pm

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby baal hadad » Fri Sep 04, 2015 7:20 pm

WashingtonIrving wrote:Callback interview:
Me: So what do you do?
Partner: You don't know?
Me: No.
Partner: Did you read my bio?
Me: No.
Partner: You didn't?
Me: No.
Partner: Really.
(awkward silence)

That's not a horror story

User avatar
BizBro
Posts: 705
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2014 11:21 am

Re: Bad Interview Moments

Postby BizBro » Fri Sep 04, 2015 7:26 pm

to be fair, you could have simply asked the question differently; i.e. "can you tell me a bit about your practice?"




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.