Mass mailing isn't working - abandoning hope

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Anonymous User
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Mass mailing isn't working - abandoning hope

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 20, 2012 9:49 am

I have sent letters and resumes to literally every single small-mid sized firm in my home market that specializes in my area of interest but I have not had any successes; just letters and emails back saying "we are not looking to hire now, good luck with the job search". Big law boat has sailed at this point and I am pretty much locked-in to working where I currently live since I went to a regional school (T30-T20), graduated, and took the bar in this state.

Have lots of work experience in area of I.P. and am currently working in-house at a technology company that operates in the defense industry doing soft/transactional I.P. stuff. I pretty much am doing the same sort of work that outside counsel would be doing according to my boss. Have worked here since January of last year. The company is going to let me work there as long as I like but they cannot hire me as an attorney because they don't have the budget for it right now. Financially, it does not make sense to stay in this position long-term especially because I have so much debt.

I really don't know what to do. I feel like I am kind of in no-mans land because I won't get big law and most of the smaller firms in my state have said they are not hiring and do not foresee a time in the future when they will be hiring.

Is there any point to mass-mailing any firm at this point or should I just plan on hanging my own shingle?

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Bronx Bum
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Re: Mass mailing isn't working - abandoning hope

Postby Bronx Bum » Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:09 am

Look outside of your "area of interest."Take anything you can get. Use your connections.

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Re: Mass mailing isn't working - abandoning hope

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:30 am

The only reason why I have hesitated to send out letters to firm outside my practice area is that I think it would be a waste of time because my lack of work experience in the area will make me uncompetitive. Like this one firm I mailed. It was a smaller plaintiff's firm that prosecuted insurance claims. They basically told me that I wasn't as qualified as other candidates because of my lack of work experience in insurance-related matters.

I am open to doing anything that will work, I just haven't gotten any results from mass mailing and feel like I am spinning my wheels. I have worked a few of my connections, but I haven't tapped into the resources that my bosses have. What about firms that I work with through my current job? One of the firms is an IP firm, but they aren't hiring at the moment. I could ask the attorney that I work with whether he has any advice on job searching.

Is there a difference between mass mailing and working your connections? If a law firm wouldn't hire you if you mass mailed them, would they hire you through a connection?

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bk1
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Re: Mass mailing isn't working - abandoning hope

Postby bk1 » Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:36 am

Anonymous User wrote:The only reason why I have hesitated to send out letters to firm outside my practice area is that I think it would be a waste of time because my lack of work experience in the area will make me uncompetitive. Like this one firm I mailed. It was a smaller plaintiff's firm that prosecuted insurance claims. They basically told me that I wasn't as qualified as other candidates because of my lack of work experience in insurance-related matters.

Is there a difference between mass mailing and working your connections? If a law firm wouldn't hire you if you mass mailed them, would they hire you through a connection?


1. While your conversion rate may not be high and you might strike out with damn near every firm, you really have nothing to lose by sending your resume to firms outside that area.

2. The connection will definitely help. It might not move mountains but it will be an edge and right now you need every edge you can get.

keg411
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Re: Mass mailing isn't working - abandoning hope

Postby keg411 » Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:43 am

Anonymous User wrote:What about firms that I work with through my current job? One of the firms is an IP firm, but they aren't hiring at the moment. I could ask the attorney that I work with whether he has any advice on job searching.

Is there a difference between mass mailing and working your connections? If a law firm wouldn't hire you if you mass mailed them, would they hire you through a connection?


1) It is an excellent idea to ask the attorneys that you work with for advice.
2) Yes, a lot of firms only hire through connections and don't really look at unsolicited resumes.

anon168
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Re: Mass mailing isn't working - abandoning hope

Postby anon168 » Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:58 am

Anonymous User wrote:I have sent letters and resumes to literally every single small-mid sized firm in my home market that specializes in my area of interest but I have not had any successes; just letters and emails back saying "we are not looking to hire now, good luck with the job search". Big law boat has sailed at this point and I am pretty much locked-in to working where I currently live since I went to a regional school (T30-T20), graduated, and took the bar in this state.

Have lots of work experience in area of I.P. and am currently working in-house at a technology company that operates in the defense industry doing soft/transactional I.P. stuff. I pretty much am doing the same sort of work that outside counsel would be doing according to my boss. Have worked here since January of last year. The company is going to let me work there as long as I like but they cannot hire me as an attorney because they don't have the budget for it right now. Financially, it does not make sense to stay in this position long-term especially because I have so much debt.

I really don't know what to do. I feel like I am kind of in no-mans land because I won't get big law and most of the smaller firms in my state have said they are not hiring and do not foresee a time in the future when they will be hiring.

Is there any point to mass-mailing any firm at this point or should I just plan on hanging my own shingle?


Hang your own shingles. It's pretty easy to get enough biz doing soft IP stuff, esp. with copyright and tm registrations, and that alone should be able to pay expenses for a while.

Good luck.

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Re: Mass mailing isn't working - abandoning hope

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 20, 2012 11:07 am

OP here. All the above advice sounds good. There is a big international IP conference in my home town in November and I am planning on going to that. I am also looking at all the local legal practice groups to find meetings and seminars where I might meet other attorneys.

I have not really *seriously* networked yet, but it appears that's all that I've got at this point. Most personal connections I have haven't panned out, but I have two bosses I can talk with. I also have a friend who works as a notary and he has told me he has tons of people who need help drafting up wills, trusts, and warranty deeds. I am looking at that as kind of a back-up option at this point as I am skeptical that it will provide me with enough income to live off of. Besides, I have absolutely no experience in these areas and I would not feel completely comfortable drafting these documents. I would totally feel comfortable drafting IP licenses, filing TM and copyright applications, and even doing some patent drafting.

Is there a point when I should give up networking if I have not had any success? The only reason I ask is that attorney's seem to have this stigma attached to them if they do not work for a firm or if they have been out of steady work since graduating from law school.

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Bronx Bum
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Re: Mass mailing isn't working - abandoning hope

Postby Bronx Bum » Thu Sep 20, 2012 11:40 am

Cnnections>>>> mass mailing. It's a stack of resumes on some dudes desk that are all going in the trash vs. "oh hey ron. I have this bright guy looking for a job do you know anyone who can get him on his feet?"

A ton (most?) of oci jobs come from connections. Most attorneys go to their buddies to look for referrals as opposed to advertising somewhere and getting 500 resumes.

keg411
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Re: Mass mailing isn't working - abandoning hope

Postby keg411 » Thu Sep 20, 2012 11:42 am

Anonymous User wrote:Is there a point when I should give up networking if I have not had any success? The only reason I ask is that attorney's seem to have this stigma attached to them if they do not work for a firm or if they have been out of steady work since graduating from law school.


You appear to have some kind of job working for/with lawyers and deal with legal issues. I think if you were just unemployed and sitting around all day, it would be different. It sounds like you haven't even started tapping your connections (the lawyers you work with, etc.) and honestly, that's the BEST way to get an actually attorney job. You don't even need to start thinking of that.

Of course, it's also not a bad idea to start trying to get some work on your own in the areas where you have experience, even if you don't officially hang a shingle and are still looking to work for a law firm/company as an attorney.

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piccolittle
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Re: Mass mailing isn't working - abandoning hope

Postby piccolittle » Thu Sep 20, 2012 2:09 pm

keg411 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Is there a point when I should give up networking if I have not had any success? The only reason I ask is that attorney's seem to have this stigma attached to them if they do not work for a firm or if they have been out of steady work since graduating from law school.


You appear to have some kind of job working for/with lawyers and deal with legal issues. I think if you were just unemployed and sitting around all day, it would be different. It sounds like you haven't even started tapping your connections (the lawyers you work with, etc.) and honestly, that's the BEST way to get an actually attorney job. You don't even need to start thinking of that.

Of course, it's also not a bad idea to start trying to get some work on your own in the areas where you have experience, even if you don't officially hang a shingle and are still looking to work for a law firm/company as an attorney.

Yep, I worked in house in IP this summer and one guy who started the summer "unemployed" (no post grad prospects) left with a 3L offer from a huge firm in the area because he hustled and got the people at the company to pitch him to their outside counsel (as I did for a 2L summer job). This is a fantastic resource and you should use it if the people there like you enough to have employed you since last January. Also, are you working for free or what? Are you actually an in-house attorney there? Do they think you're there long term and would it burn bridges to suggest that you want to jump ship to a firm?

Anonymous User
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Re: Mass mailing isn't working - abandoning hope

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Sep 20, 2012 8:55 pm

Awesome advice everyone. Looks like I need to start hustling and talk with my boss more about advice on the job search. He has asked me a few times how the search is going and he said he would go to bat for me and offer a recommendation letter, but I have not asked him if he knows of any firms or knows somebody who may need more help.

piccolittle wrote:Yep, I worked in house in IP this summer and one guy who started the summer "unemployed" (no post grad prospects) left with a 3L offer from a huge firm in the area because he hustled and got the people at the company to pitch him to their outside counsel (as I did for a 2L summer job). This is a fantastic resource and you should use it if the people there like you enough to have employed you since last January. Also, are you working for free or what? Are you actually an in-house attorney there? Do they think you're there long term and would it burn bridges to suggest that you want to jump ship to a firm?


That sounds like a nice success story. My boss used to work at a big firm and then moved in-house, so definitely will need to look at this route. I am not currently working for free. I am officially still a "law clerk" but my guess is that if I was hired, I would be considered an attorney. I am pretty much doing the full-gamut of assisting in developing and managing the company's IP portfolio. Long-term prospects may be favorable if they find out I have an offer in hand, but I do not think I would be hurting any feelings if I jumped ship.




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