Biglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

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Biglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 28, 2016 12:03 pm

Am I supposed to smile, be polite, and just answer questions and ask questions when asked, or do I treat it like a conversation?

I know it wont be as lively and casual as talking about sports but i dont think it is supposed to be an interrogation.

Can a more experienced interviewee here give me some tips on how to carry on a pleasant convo and what it is supposed to look like? What questions do I ask? I am nervous as this will be my first biglaw interview. I really appreciate it.
Last edited by Anonymous User on Tue Jun 28, 2016 9:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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UnicornHunter

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Re: Buglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby UnicornHunter » Tue Jun 28, 2016 12:11 pm

It's a little bit of this and a little bit of that. Probably not what you wanted to hear, but there's no way to know for sure- a lot depends on your interviewer's style. The best thing you can do is be natural- read the mood in the room and try to match it. Be prepared to field questions about your background, work experience, etc, but also try to subtly turn the Q&A session into a conversation. The more you can get the interviewer talking, the less bored she's going to be.

Know what the firm does ahead of time and be able to explain why you're a good fit for it. If you know who is going to interview you, read up on their background. Ask them questions, especially if those questions demonstrate an interest in the firm.

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Re: Buglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby monsterman » Tue Jun 28, 2016 12:12 pm

Follow their lead but have a conversation. My best advice is do not force anything and do not try to start selling yourself in an interview when the interviewer hasn't asked a single thing about you. You will probably have a couple uncomfortable interviews where the interviewer is an aspie and goes question, answer; question, answer--but I found those to be the exception. My best interviews were when we talked about football the whole time or something. Finally, if a question is asked of you, don't be content with just answering it and silently waiting for the next question. Answer the question but then flip it around if you can so the interviewer talks about him/herself. Attorneys love talking about themselves.

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Re: Buglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby HonestAdvice » Tue Jun 28, 2016 12:20 pm

If the conversation goes well you can loosen the knot of your tie to show them that you're comfortable, which will segue well into the period where you ask questions. One of the best ways of showing interest is to ask the interviewer whether it's hot in the room or if it's just you. You follow up the question by unbuttoning a few of your shirt buttons to show a little skin. This not only displays complete comfort with the interviewer, but indicates that you can think about your feet and trust your instincts.

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Re: Buglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue Jun 28, 2016 12:24 pm

HonestAdvice wrote:If the conversation goes well you can loosen the knot of your tie to show them that you're comfortable, which will segue well into the period where you ask questions. One of the best ways of showing interest is to ask the interviewer whether it's hot in the room or if it's just you. You follow up the question by unbuttoning a few of your shirt buttons to show a little skin. This not only displays complete comfort with the interviewer, but indicates that you can think about your feet and trust your instincts.

Stop posting ridiculous advice in the on-topics.

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Re: Buglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby Abbie Doobie » Tue Jun 28, 2016 12:26 pm

buglaw sounds like a pretty niche practice area

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Mullens

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Re: Buglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby Mullens » Tue Jun 28, 2016 12:30 pm

The more conversational the better. Smile, be happy, and try to be natural. If you just treat it like an interrogation then it's going to go poorly. Make sure to prepare several questions (like at least 5-8) ahead of time because some interviewers will start with or will quickly ask if you have any questions. Try to turn those questions into a conversation. Don't be afraid to ask the exact same questions to every interviewer; they're not comparing notes. Be ready for all the basic questions you would expect: how's law school; what's your favorite class; why law school; why your law school; why that firm; why that city; what practice area and why; what are you writing your note on (if you're on journal and why you're not on journal if not); and for everything on your resume.

bern victim

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Re: Buglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby bern victim » Tue Jun 28, 2016 12:59 pm

Abbie Doobie wrote:buglaw sounds like a pretty niche practice area

nah it's buzzing

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Re: Buglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 28, 2016 1:03 pm

bern victim wrote:
Abbie Doobie wrote:buglaw sounds like a pretty niche practice area

nah it's buzzing

heard everyone litrally is swarming to firms that specialize in it

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Re: Buglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 28, 2016 9:06 pm

OP here. I appreciate the advice but I will skip the advice on loosing up my shirt lol :lol:

Would it be okay to email the legal assistant lady whom I had been in contact with for the interview to ask who will be interviewing me? I try to limit my contact with them unless I really have to do avoid making dumb mistakes.

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4LTsPointingNorth

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Re: Buglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby 4LTsPointingNorth » Tue Jun 28, 2016 9:12 pm

Anonymous User wrote:OP here. I appreciate the advice but I will skip the advice on loosing up my shirt lol :lol:

Would it be okay to email the legal assistant lady whom I had been in contact with for the interview to ask who will be interviewing me? I try to limit my contact with them unless I really have to do avoid making dumb mistakes.


Yes, that's fine. If you're worried about goofing on your email, just call her during normal business hours and ask. More likely than not the names of your interviewers will not be available until the day before your interview, as schedules tend to be hard to pin down until then. But it doesn't hurt to ask.

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Re: Biglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jun 28, 2016 9:16 pm

Sorry for all the typos. I am making more mistakes than usual this week, partly because I have been losing sleep catching up on Game of Thrones, but also because of long work hours.

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Re: Biglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby Avian » Tue Jun 28, 2016 9:43 pm

Your approach to the interview can also depend on how competitive you think you are for a firm. If you know you're in the grade range the firm looks for, you basically want the interviewer to think you're someone they could see themselves working with, in other words, you want to have a pleasant conversation. If it's a firm that is a bit of a reach for you, you do want to sell yourself in the sense that they leave knowing some positive points about you, but it still should be conversational, it's a fine line to walk. What you don't want in the second scenario is for them to leave thinking, "they seemed like a nice person but they're just outside our normal grade cutoff, too bad." If on paper you're not who a firm would normally hire, shooting the breeze about sports is probably not going to be enough.

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Re: Biglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby lavarman84 » Tue Jun 28, 2016 10:08 pm

As others said, it's a bit of both. Just relax and be yourself. Unless yourself isn't social. Then be someone who is. Read social cues and do your best to react accordingly. Some interviews will be easy-going conversations. Some will be more awkward interrogations. Depends on the person who is interviewing you. If you can turn the interview into a conversation, it will generally bode well for you.

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Re: Biglaw Interview... a conversation or Q&A?

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Jun 29, 2016 1:01 am

OP here. I dont think the grades will have an impact as they never asked for my transcript. I am sure they might during the interview so I will just bring a complete set of my application handy. With that said, i am confident my resume (without GPA showing) is as good as anybody else's in my position - 1 year out. Close to 1 year of lit, lots of clinical experience, being published, moot court, lots of scholarships etc.



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