OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

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OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 01, 2016 3:45 pm

So I finished day 1 and had 5 interviews, none of which went particularly great. They all seemed mediocre, rushed because of the short time slots, etc.

Is it normal to feel like your OCI interviews were all just average? Such as only being asked a few questions, asking 1 or 2 to the recruiter about the firm, and then it's time to go.

Is this how it's supposed to be?

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Re: OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 01, 2016 3:50 pm

If you're not feeling good about them that's prolly not a good sign. Every firm I interviewed with I have been able to gauge a callback or not based on if time flies and its interesting. I mean yeah they're short, hence screener. But if you aren't feeling like you make a connection, change something up.

favabeansoup

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Re: OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby favabeansoup » Mon Aug 01, 2016 4:27 pm

Anonymous User wrote:So I finished day 1 and had 5 interviews, none of which went particularly great. They all seemed mediocre, rushed because of the short time slots, etc.

Is it normal to feel like your OCI interviews were all just average? Such as only being asked a few questions, asking 1 or 2 to the recruiter about the firm, and then it's time to go.

Is this how it's supposed to be?



I had awkward screeners get me callbacks, and I had what I thought were fantastic screeners + seemingly good networking at their OCI reception get me nothing.

It depends on the firm. Although if you felt bad about 5/5 that may not be good. Hopefully you have a lot more to do. My later ones were much more natural than the earlier ones, just because you have all the extra practice doing it.

Yeezus Wept

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Re: OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby Yeezus Wept » Mon Aug 01, 2016 4:42 pm

Isn't the real question here what your grades are? If you're trying to punch above your weight grade wise, then yeah you probably need to change something up in order to secure callbacks. But if you have top grades and law review, i would think even a mediocre screener would get you a callback almost anywhere, as long as it wasn't a complete trainwreck.

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Re: OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 01, 2016 5:23 pm

Is an OCI interview mediocre if you don't get enough time to ask your own questions? I was asked a lot of questions about my work experience (unrelated to the job I'm after) and what exactly I do now, and by the end of it didn't have a chance to ask my own questions to the interviewer. I feel like that's a bad sign? Or maybe not?

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Re: OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Aug 01, 2016 9:19 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Is an OCI interview mediocre if you don't get enough time to ask your own questions? I was asked a lot of questions about my work experience (unrelated to the job I'm after) and what exactly I do now, and by the end of it didn't have a chance to ask my own questions to the interviewer. I feel like that's a bad sign? Or maybe not?


Not necessarily. Both current CBs we never go to the asking questions portion. Just don't be weird and make conversation.

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Re: OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Aug 04, 2016 1:56 am

is it OK in OCI to ask questions regarding the firm? And not specific to the SA program? Such as ''How is X office's corporate practice and what obstacles is it facing?''

I've been doing all firm questions, none to actual SA, since just about all SAs are the same it seems and firms post a lot about their programs online. Is this ok to do?

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Re: OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Aug 04, 2016 3:44 am

Anonymous User wrote:is it OK in OCI to ask questions regarding the firm? And not specific to the SA program? Such as ''How is X office's corporate practice and what obstacles is it facing?''

I've been doing all firm questions, none to actual SA, since just about all SAs are the same it seems and firms post a lot about their programs online. Is this ok to do?


I've only asked about general practice if I could demonstrate some experience-based knowledge of the practice area, otherwise I stuck to SA questions because that is what we will be and for now, the most relevant to our immediate future. Also some SAs are distinguishable from the others and firms loved it when I pointed them out and could show an interest in said difference. Another good topic was the interviewer's personal experiences.

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Re: OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Thu Aug 04, 2016 10:16 am

Purely anecdotal, and bearing in mind I turned out to be an excellent interviewee, but I generally knew which interviews went well and which did not. If you're leaving and feeling that it did not go well, that you did not "connect" with the interviewer(s), then that could be true. BUT, who knows? It's also possible you're nervous and bad at reading people, hence you think you bombed them all, when actually you did fine.

Go have a drink and relax while you wait to hear back. This is like "don't talk about the exam with your peers after you all take it." Just wait and see. Good luck

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Re: OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby NotMyRealName09 » Thu Aug 04, 2016 10:24 am

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:is it OK in OCI to ask questions regarding the firm? And not specific to the SA program? Such as ''How is X office's corporate practice and what obstacles is it facing?''

I've been doing all firm questions, none to actual SA, since just about all SAs are the same it seems and firms post a lot about their programs online. Is this ok to do?


I've only asked about general practice if I could demonstrate some experience-based knowledge of the practice area, otherwise I stuck to SA questions because that is what we will be and for now, the most relevant to our immediate future. Also some SAs are distinguishable from the others and firms loved it when I pointed them out and could show an interest in said difference. Another good topic was the interviewer's personal experiences.


My advice here is to repeat my long-standing mantra - your interview questions should focus on learning about the interviewer. Almost without fail, asking the person about the nature of their practice (question 1), then also about how their legal career lead them to here (question 2), and maybe what it is they like about their firm (question 3), can eat up 20 minutes right there. People love talking about themselves, and they also love people who like them (as shown by asking questions about their life). It's actually really easy once you can ask these questions naturally. Break out of the "tell me about X on your resume" mold - have a conversation.

And yeah, feel free to not ask any SA questions - that topic does not lend itself to organic follow up. "Will I have a mentor?" "Yes." "Are assignments coordinated or freely given by partners?" "We have a coordinator." Boring and really, is THAT what is going to be the deciding factor? No, its fit, so chat them up about their life, and make them see a little of themselves in you. Works like a charm, easier said than done I know, but just try it - you should have one goal in the interview - ask about their practice and what they like about it, and ask them about their career path.

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Re: OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Aug 04, 2016 2:00 pm

OP Here. I've had a good amount of interviews, and except for the first few, I have felt like I did well in all of them. I'm not awkward or anything, and have good answers for all the questions (why law, what practice area, why our office, etc). Still haven't heard anything from any firm. Still early but needless to say I'm getting anxious

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Re: OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby RaceJudicata » Thu Aug 04, 2016 2:30 pm

NotMyRealName09 wrote:
My advice here is to repeat my long-standing mantra - your interview questions should focus on learning about the interviewer. Almost without fail, asking the person about the nature of their practice (question 1), then also about how their legal career lead them to here (question 2), and maybe what it is they like about their firm (question 3), can eat up 20 minutes right there. People love talking about themselves, and they also love people who like them (as shown by asking questions about their life). It's actually really easy once you can ask these questions naturally. Break out of the "tell me about X on your resume" mold - have a conversation.

And yeah, feel free to not ask any SA questions - that topic does not lend itself to organic follow up. "Will I have a mentor?" "Yes." "Are assignments coordinated or freely given by partners?" "We have a coordinator." Boring and really, is THAT what is going to be the deciding factor? No, its fit, so chat them up about their life, and make them see a little of themselves in you. Works like a charm, easier said than done I know, but just try it - you should have one goal in the interview - ask about their practice and what they like about it, and ask them about their career path.


This is great advice. Another good question that applies to all interviewers (assuming they have a linkedin): Look at linkedin, see if they have practiced at xyz firm their entire career or if they lateraled. If entire career, ask why the have stayed at xyz firm. If lateral, ask "why xyz firm? and more importantly, why have you stayed"

This takes them on a trip down memory lane. Lots of good responses (read: time consuming). Also shows that you did your homework.

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Re: OCI interviews: totally Mediocre

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Aug 04, 2016 9:32 pm

how bad is it when interviewing with a litigation firm that also has a strong IP lit department and he asks ''are you interested in IP lit?'' and i say ''no, more commerical lit/complex lit''. Dont have an IP background [poli sci] so thats why I said no. Now thinking I should have atleast showed interest.



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