Interview questions you've been asked

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hoos89
Posts: 1969
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby hoos89 » Fri Aug 09, 2013 2:27 am

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Last edited by hoos89 on Fri Jul 04, 2014 1:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

longhorns89
Posts: 24
Joined: Thu Oct 20, 2011 8:37 pm

Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby longhorns89 » Fri Aug 09, 2013 12:16 pm

For the card trick, I would have just started dealing for blackjack.

When I first walk into the guy's office, "Can you name the founders of your chapter?"
Q: Do you watch Suits? A: No. Q: You should. It's the most realistic depiction of a law firm on TV.
Greatest strength and weakness
Tell me about a time you had a short time to figure out something new (or something to that effect).
"Tell me about yourself."
"I was talking with [player from school's football team] recently and he said that football has become 'pussified.' What do you think?"

name of user
Posts: 17
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby name of user » Fri Aug 09, 2013 12:35 pm

How are you at controlling your temper? Have you ever completely cracked?

What's your stress-management strategy?

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brotherdarkness
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby brotherdarkness » Fri Aug 09, 2013 1:15 pm

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Last edited by brotherdarkness on Thu Mar 27, 2014 11:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Anonymous User
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Aug 09, 2013 1:32 pm

I interviewed with a D.A. today who asked me two personal responsibility questions - one about how I would handle being asked to decide among ourselves who would attend a hearing if it is an important case and only I have previous hearing experience, one about how I would respond to a coworker posting about a defendant on Facebook.

NYstate
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby NYstate » Fri Aug 09, 2013 1:43 pm

name of user wrote:How are you at controlling your temper? Have you ever completely cracked?

What's your stress-management strategy?



Not to jump into this thread too much, but this sounds like a red flag. I'm not sure I would like the firm that found it necessary to ask if I've ever completely cracked.

michaelbluth
Posts: 44
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby michaelbluth » Fri Aug 09, 2013 1:59 pm

NYstate wrote:
name of user wrote:How are you at controlling your temper? Have you ever completely cracked?

What's your stress-management strategy?



Not to jump into this thread too much, but this sounds like a red flag. I'm not sure I would like the firm that found it necessary to ask if I've ever completely cracked.


Then again, I've been asked about stress and anger management in non-legal interviews before and worked for a company that asked about both. The most stressful part of the job was the five-mile commute.

collegewriter
Posts: 74
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby collegewriter » Fri Aug 09, 2013 11:11 pm

-Why did you choose your school?
-What would you change about your school if you could?
-What did you takeaway from X experience?
-What type of law do you want to practice (the WORST question IMO-we've all taken the same stupid classes)
-Have you done any research beyond the website, have you talked to anyone at the firm?
-You went to college in X city so why do you want to practice here?
-Do X and Y still work at your job? (name drop name drop name drop)
-Do you know who the Real Housewives are?
-What has contributed to your law school success?

And the worst: Tell me about yourself.

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brotherdarkness
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby brotherdarkness » Fri Aug 09, 2013 11:24 pm

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Last edited by brotherdarkness on Thu Mar 27, 2014 11:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.

yankees12
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby yankees12 » Sat Aug 10, 2013 11:15 am

What would you do if you were assigned a case that you morally disagreed with?

Tell me about a time when you had to manage people older than you. (I'm a K-JD...)

law321
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby law321 » Sat Aug 10, 2013 11:51 am

Biglaw OCI interviewer here. I read these boards occasionally and figured it may be helpful to answer questions/provide some insight.

When I interview people, I focus almost exclusively on personality and the candidate's ability to hold a casual, intelligent conversation. Oddball questions aren't really my style, but they do serve a purpose - the interviewer can evaluate your ability to handle uncomfortable questions, which happens often when counseling clients.

More generally, the worst candidate is one who takes himself too seriously, cannot comfortably hold a conversation, who comes across as entitled, who cannot talk about his resume comprehensively or answer the lay-up questions (e.g., why law school, why this firm, etc), and who does not seem interested enough to ask questions. The best candidate is kind, intelligent, confident (but NOT arrogant), has a sense of humor, knows his resume inside and out, answers the lay-up questions appropriately, and asks me plenty of questions.

If you have specific questions, fire away.

de5igual
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby de5igual » Sat Aug 10, 2013 12:00 pm

Where are you from? What's your nationality? Are you an American citizen?

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harbin
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby harbin » Sat Aug 10, 2013 12:07 pm

f0bolous wrote:Where are you from? What's your nationality? Are you an American citizen?


Is it just me or do the second two seem inappropriate?

de5igual
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby de5igual » Sat Aug 10, 2013 12:08 pm

harbin wrote:
f0bolous wrote:Where are you from? What's your nationality? Are you an American citizen?


Is it just me or do the second two seem inappropriate?


doesn't mean they don't get asked

law321
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby law321 » Sat Aug 10, 2013 12:17 pm

f0bolous wrote:
harbin wrote:
f0bolous wrote:Where are you from? What's your nationality? Are you an American citizen?


Is it just me or do the second two seem inappropriate?


doesn't mean they don't get asked


This raises a very important point. Unfortunately, some interviewers do ask inappropriate questions (as compared to oddball questions). If this happens, do your best to remain composed, answer briefly, and then change the subject. Have one talking point memorized (i.e., something from one of the attorney's bio) that you can turn to in the event things get awkwardly quiet or you need to move away from weird questions like these.

NYstate
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby NYstate » Sat Aug 10, 2013 1:07 pm

I think firms can ask about citizenship. They have to report the status of all employees and they want to know if they are going to have to sponsor you.

I have a problem with this question if it is only asked selectively.


Edit: my mistake. This is after you get an offer.

potted plant
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby potted plant » Sat Aug 10, 2013 1:14 pm

The citizenship question is less suspect than the question (statement?) that someone got earlier in this thread. Something along the lines of "I hope you don't plan on having kids." It's probably suspect for the interviewer to ask about whether you want to have kids in a neutral way, but definitely inappropriate to add any sort of negative judgment or opinion. Seems like a really efficient way to get your firm in trouble for employment discrimination.

Anonymous User
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Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Aug 10, 2013 1:30 pm

law321 wrote:Biglaw OCI interviewer here. I read these boards occasionally and figured it may be helpful to answer questions/provide some insight.

When I interview people, I focus almost exclusively on personality and the candidate's ability to hold a casual, intelligent conversation. Oddball questions aren't really my style, but they do serve a purpose - the interviewer can evaluate your ability to handle uncomfortable questions, which happens often when counseling clients.

More generally, the worst candidate is one who takes himself too seriously, cannot comfortably hold a conversation, who comes across as entitled, who cannot talk about his resume comprehensively or answer the lay-up questions (e.g., why law school, why this firm, etc), and who does not seem interested enough to ask questions. The best candidate is kind, intelligent, confident (but NOT arrogant), has a sense of humor, knows his resume inside and out, answers the lay-up questions appropriately, and asks me plenty of questions.

If you have specific questions, fire away.


What would you expect to hear from someone who has corporate experience prior to law school? I am trying to find the balance between marketing myself as having a solid business background, but I want to make sure I am not crossing the line to make it seem like I want a shortcut. I realize that my career will be be setting up entities to start, but I want to provide that I have a solid foundation to build from, that will distinguish me from others.

law321
Posts: 79
Joined: Sat Aug 10, 2013 11:34 am

Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby law321 » Sat Aug 10, 2013 1:41 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
law321 wrote:Biglaw OCI interviewer here. I read these boards occasionally and figured it may be helpful to answer questions/provide some insight.

When I interview people, I focus almost exclusively on personality and the candidate's ability to hold a casual, intelligent conversation. Oddball questions aren't really my style, but they do serve a purpose - the interviewer can evaluate your ability to handle uncomfortable questions, which happens often when counseling clients.

More generally, the worst candidate is one who takes himself too seriously, cannot comfortably hold a conversation, who comes across as entitled, who cannot talk about his resume comprehensively or answer the lay-up questions (e.g., why law school, why this firm, etc), and who does not seem interested enough to ask questions. The best candidate is kind, intelligent, confident (but NOT arrogant), has a sense of humor, knows his resume inside and out, answers the lay-up questions appropriately, and asks me plenty of questions.

If you have specific questions, fire away.


What would you expect to hear from someone who has corporate experience prior to law school? I am trying to find the balance between marketing myself as having a solid business background, but I want to make sure I am not crossing the line to make it seem like I want a shortcut. I realize that my career will be be setting up entities to start, but I want to provide that I have a solid foundation to build from, that will distinguish me from others.


One response (of many) that would be acceptable to me is that you have prior business experience, you enjoyed the [collaborative, interpersonal, constructive, etc] nature of business-related work, and you have some insight into how clients view transactional issues/needs. Taken together, those things suggest you'd be a natural fit.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273598
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Aug 10, 2013 1:48 pm

law321 wrote:Biglaw OCI interviewer here. I read these boards occasionally and figured it may be helpful to answer questions/provide some insight.

When I interview people, I focus almost exclusively on personality and the candidate's ability to hold a casual, intelligent conversation. Oddball questions aren't really my style, but they do serve a purpose - the interviewer can evaluate your ability to handle uncomfortable questions, which happens often when counseling clients.

More generally, the worst candidate is one who takes himself too seriously, cannot comfortably hold a conversation, who comes across as entitled, who cannot talk about his resume comprehensively or answer the lay-up questions (e.g., why law school, why this firm, etc), and who does not seem interested enough to ask questions. The best candidate is kind, intelligent, confident (but NOT arrogant), has a sense of humor, knows his resume inside and out, answers the lay-up questions appropriately, and asks me plenty of questions.

If you have specific questions, fire away.


How in the world do you evaluate whether someone is kind in an interview?

Anonymous User
Posts: 273598
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Aug 10, 2013 1:49 pm

law321 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
law321 wrote:Biglaw OCI interviewer here. I read these boards occasionally and figured it may be helpful to answer questions/provide some insight.

When I interview people, I focus almost exclusively on personality and the candidate's ability to hold a casual, intelligent conversation. Oddball questions aren't really my style, but they do serve a purpose - the interviewer can evaluate your ability to handle uncomfortable questions, which happens often when counseling clients.

More generally, the worst candidate is one who takes himself too seriously, cannot comfortably hold a conversation, who comes across as entitled, who cannot talk about his resume comprehensively or answer the lay-up questions (e.g., why law school, why this firm, etc), and who does not seem interested enough to ask questions. The best candidate is kind, intelligent, confident (but NOT arrogant), has a sense of humor, knows his resume inside and out, answers the lay-up questions appropriately, and asks me plenty of questions.

If you have specific questions, fire away.


What would you expect to hear from someone who has corporate experience prior to law school? I am trying to find the balance between marketing myself as having a solid business background, but I want to make sure I am not crossing the line to make it seem like I want a shortcut. I realize that my career will be be setting up entities to start, but I want to provide that I have a solid foundation to build from, that will distinguish me from others.


One response (of many) that would be acceptable to me is that you have prior business experience, you enjoyed the [collaborative, interpersonal, constructive, etc] nature of business-related work, and you have some insight into how clients view transactional issues/needs. Taken together, those things suggest you'd be a natural fit.


Thanks!

olive16
Posts: 143
Joined: Mon Jun 10, 2013 10:13 pm

Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby olive16 » Sat Aug 10, 2013 1:53 pm

law321 wrote:Biglaw OCI interviewer here. I read these boards occasionally and figured it may be helpful to answer questions/provide some insight.

When I interview people, I focus almost exclusively on personality and the candidate's ability to hold a casual, intelligent conversation. Oddball questions aren't really my style, but they do serve a purpose - the interviewer can evaluate your ability to handle uncomfortable questions, which happens often when counseling clients.

More generally, the worst candidate is one who takes himself too seriously, cannot comfortably hold a conversation, who comes across as entitled, who cannot talk about his resume comprehensively or answer the lay-up questions (e.g., why law school, why this firm, etc), and who does not seem interested enough to ask questions. The best candidate is kind, intelligent, confident (but NOT arrogant), has a sense of humor, knows his resume inside and out, answers the lay-up questions appropriately, and asks me plenty of questions.

If you have specific questions, fire away.



Thanks for doing this. How/when do you know you're gonna give a candidate a callback? More generally, what advice do you have for a guy who comes across as quiet and humble?

law321
Posts: 79
Joined: Sat Aug 10, 2013 11:34 am

Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby law321 » Sat Aug 10, 2013 1:56 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
law321 wrote:Biglaw OCI interviewer here. I read these boards occasionally and figured it may be helpful to answer questions/provide some insight.

When I interview people, I focus almost exclusively on personality and the candidate's ability to hold a casual, intelligent conversation. Oddball questions aren't really my style, but they do serve a purpose - the interviewer can evaluate your ability to handle uncomfortable questions, which happens often when counseling clients.

More generally, the worst candidate is one who takes himself too seriously, cannot comfortably hold a conversation, who comes across as entitled, who cannot talk about his resume comprehensively or answer the lay-up questions (e.g., why law school, why this firm, etc), and who does not seem interested enough to ask questions. The best candidate is kind, intelligent, confident (but NOT arrogant), has a sense of humor, knows his resume inside and out, answers the lay-up questions appropriately, and asks me plenty of questions.

If you have specific questions, fire away.


How in the world do you evaluate whether someone is kind in an interview?


I infer whether the person seems nice/kind/pleasant from our conversation and general demeanor. You'd be surprised...some people come across as very arrogant and confrontational right off the bat. Even with otherwise sterling credentials, I am not recommending that person receive a callback/offer.

Anonymous User
Posts: 273598
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby Anonymous User » Sat Aug 10, 2013 2:03 pm

law321 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
law321 wrote:Biglaw OCI interviewer here. I read these boards occasionally and figured it may be helpful to answer questions/provide some insight.

When I interview people, I focus almost exclusively on personality and the candidate's ability to hold a casual, intelligent conversation. Oddball questions aren't really my style, but they do serve a purpose - the interviewer can evaluate your ability to handle uncomfortable questions, which happens often when counseling clients.

More generally, the worst candidate is one who takes himself too seriously, cannot comfortably hold a conversation, who comes across as entitled, who cannot talk about his resume comprehensively or answer the lay-up questions (e.g., why law school, why this firm, etc), and who does not seem interested enough to ask questions. The best candidate is kind, intelligent, confident (but NOT arrogant), has a sense of humor, knows his resume inside and out, answers the lay-up questions appropriately, and asks me plenty of questions.

If you have specific questions, fire away.


How in the world do you evaluate whether someone is kind in an interview?


I infer whether the person seems nice/kind/pleasant from our conversation and general demeanor. You'd be surprised...some people come across as very arrogant and confrontational right off the bat. Even with otherwise sterling credentials, I am not recommending that person receive a callback/offer.


How in the world can you tell if someone is arrogant? Who starts an interview with "well I am better than you so dance for me."?

But most important, what's the right way to sit if you're a man? Hands clasped in front of your groin? Hands resting on your lap? Legs open, arms on your legs, palms down (power position)? Legs crossed, knees locked? Legs crossed, knees unlocked? Back straight up against the chair? Leaning back, shoulders back? Leaning forward, shoulders back? Leaning forward, shoulders dropped?

Jimbo_Jones
Posts: 196
Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2012 9:36 am

Re: Interview questions you've been asked

Postby Jimbo_Jones » Sat Aug 10, 2013 3:33 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
law321 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
law321 wrote:Biglaw OCI interviewer here. I read these boards occasionally and figured it may be helpful to answer questions/provide some insight.

When I interview people, I focus almost exclusively on personality and the candidate's ability to hold a casual, intelligent conversation. Oddball questions aren't really my style, but they do serve a purpose - the interviewer can evaluate your ability to handle uncomfortable questions, which happens often when counseling clients.

More generally, the worst candidate is one who takes himself too seriously, cannot comfortably hold a conversation, who comes across as entitled, who cannot talk about his resume comprehensively or answer the lay-up questions (e.g., why law school, why this firm, etc), and who does not seem interested enough to ask questions. The best candidate is kind, intelligent, confident (but NOT arrogant), has a sense of humor, knows his resume inside and out, answers the lay-up questions appropriately, and asks me plenty of questions.

If you have specific questions, fire away.


How in the world do you evaluate whether someone is kind in an interview?


I infer whether the person seems nice/kind/pleasant from our conversation and general demeanor. You'd be surprised...some people come across as very arrogant and confrontational right off the bat. Even with otherwise sterling credentials, I am not recommending that person receive a callback/offer.


How in the world can you tell if someone is arrogant? Who starts an interview with "well I am better than you so dance for me."?

But most important, what's the right way to sit if you're a man? Hands clasped in front of your groin? Hands resting on your lap? Legs open, arms on your legs, palms down (power position)? Legs crossed, knees locked? Legs crossed, knees unlocked? Back straight up against the chair? Leaning back, shoulders back? Leaning forward, shoulders back? Leaning forward, shoulders dropped?



You're incredulous about an interviewer's ability to pick up on certain personality traits based on a candidate's demeanor, yet you're concerned that an interviewer will notice whether you've chosen the "right way" to sit?




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