Good questions to ask a future employer?

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Good questions to ask a future employer?

Postby InChrist1616 » Mon Apr 14, 2014 7:51 am

I am a 0L meeting today with one of the partners at a big law firm that I hope to intern for in the future. He is being kind enough to meet with me and answer any questions I may have. I of course want to make a stunning first impression.

Advantage: I am going to a t14 law school and will be coming home to this firm that mostly gets applications from state law schools. This firm also hires 1L interns.

Here are some:
(Obviously first I will want to hear about his law school career and how he got to where he is now)

"What should I focus on the most in my 1L year in order to be a good candidate for XX law firm?"
"What are the main characteristics that your firm looks for in prospective interns or associates?"
"What are the duties of 1L and 2L interns, and how can I best prepare for them?"
"What kinds of people are the most succesfull once they are hired at your firm? What are their qualities and characteristics?"


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A. Nony Mouse

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Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Good questions to ask a future employer?

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Mon Apr 14, 2014 10:51 am

I would probably not ask questions that are so clearly focused on getting a job with that specific firm. Everyone knows you're going to be looking for a job, but people don't always like being seen as a stepping stone to employment, rather than as a mentor/guide more generally. Couch your questions a little more generally, like ""What should I focus on the most in my 1L year in order to be a good candidate for law firms [even better: practicing X]?", "What are the main characteristics that firms like yours look for in prospective interns or associates?", "What do you believe are the qualities and characteristics of a successful summer associate?" Really, you could just ask what kind of job/career advice he would give a new law student interested in a firm job, and see where it goes - don't make it so much about how to prepare to get a job with that firm.

Follow the partner's lead, of course, but unless he does, I wouldn't refer to the position as an internship. It's a summer job, not an internship - either as a summer associate or a law clerk or whatever terms they use. (Though it sounds like they might call 1Ls interns?)

Overall, I would ask the partner many more questions about himself - which you say you're going to - but also ask about his practice area, a typical day in the life of an associate in that practice area, what he thinks are the biggest challenges facing lawyers (law students) today, would he do it over again, if he did would he do anything differently - that kind of thing.

El Principe

Posts: 551
Joined: Mon Mar 11, 2013 3:10 am

Re: Good questions to ask a future employer?

Postby El Principe » Mon Apr 14, 2014 11:16 am

Sounds like Texas.

And if you're intending on making a good impression, you'd probably do best to drop the script and just have a natural conversation, instead of the guy who asked a bunch of forced questions and came off as awkward.

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