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Author Topic: 1L SA Interviews, secondary market, connections, what to expect? Advice?  (Read 3867 times)

rollingthedice

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Re: 1L SA Interviews, secondary market, connections, what to expect? Advice?
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2008, 05:50:13 PM »
I have had 2 interviews in a secondary market so far.  The first was about 6 hours long and included interviews with 2 attorneys every 30 minutes, with a break for lunch with 3 other attorneys.  The interviews basically went over my resume (a few times!), my interest in that market and that firm, questions I had for them, etc.  The day capped off with a one-on-one with a named partner and a short de-briefing period in which I met with people I'd already met with, who asked if I had any further questions and let me know when I should expect an answer.

That contrasted greatly with the second interview, in which I went to dinner with the hiring committee--4 attorneys.  It was about 3 hours long and we mostly talked about things other than my resume and my interest in the firm. While it was much more fun than the first interview, I didn't really learn as much about the firm.

superrob-rp7

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Re: 1L SA Interviews, secondary market, connections, what to expect? Advice?
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2008, 06:32:41 PM »
Sorry for my ignorance - but what is a secondary market?

Lenny

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Re: 1L SA Interviews, secondary market, connections, what to expect? Advice?
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2008, 07:17:35 PM »
Secondary market = not NYC, DC, Atl, LA, Chi., Dallas, Houston, San Fran, Boston.

You should expect a lot of "why here" questions. 

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Re: 1L SA Interviews, secondary market, connections, what to expect? Advice?
« Reply #4 on: January 04, 2008, 06:36:59 PM »
I am not sure if I will get alot of the "why here" questions, as my family still lives in the city in question, I grew up here, and I graduated UG here as well.  I am actually anticipating more questions about why did I go to the law school that I do.  I am not sure how to answer those...how do you inform potential employers it was because they gave you a good scholarship without sounding like a feminine hygiene product?  Or how can I say it was because I thought it would be a more challenging environment without insulting schools that many of the attorneys I will be speaking with themselves graduated from?  It seems like everything I could say would "cut both ways".

Also what kind of questions do people ask, I have not been able to find out specific people that I will be talking to, so researching their specific practice area's would be difficult.  What are some general or even specific questions that are good to ask in an interview so you can keep the conversation moving and appear interested?  I would assume some open ended questions would be good for this...

I got a lot of the "why XX school?" during my interiews.  I was pretty honest.  I said that I was looking for a school that would give me the most options, would enable me to be the most mobile, and would enable me to re-enter the workplace if I had to leave for a period of time or transfer to another city.  As long as you don't say, "I went there because every other school is TTT" you should be fine.

SoCalBruin

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Re: 1L SA Interviews, secondary market, connections, what to expect? Advice?
« Reply #5 on: January 05, 2008, 08:53:55 PM »
Secondary market = not NYC, DC, Atl, LA, Chi., Dallas, Houston, San Fran, Boston.

You should expect a lot of "why here" questions. 

Do these primary markets extend somewhat beyond the city proper?  For example, is Orange County considered LA, for all intents and purposes? 

rollingthedice

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Re: 1L SA Interviews, secondary market, connections, what to expect? Advice?
« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2008, 03:04:21 PM »
I got a lot of the "why XX school?" during my interiews.  I was pretty honest.  I said that I was looking for a school that would give me the most options, would enable me to be the most mobile, and would enable me to re-enter the workplace if I had to leave for a period of time or transfer to another city.  As long as you don't say, "I went there because every other school is TTT" you should be fine.

Thanks, I think that is helpful advice.  Do you think I should bring a writing sample / list of references?  Neither place has requested either but I suppose they would be good to have on hand.  Who do people generally use as refereces, law professors they have a good relationship with?  Former employers (if in an unrelated field even?)  I suppose I will be spending today and tomarrow reading lots about interviews, probably some good stuff on vault somewhere.

TPS Report

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Re: 1L SA Interviews, secondary market, connections, what to expect? Advice?
« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2008, 06:18:51 PM »
I got a lot of the "why XX school?" during my interiews.  I was pretty honest.  I said that I was looking for a school that would give me the most options, would enable me to be the most mobile, and would enable me to re-enter the workplace if I had to leave for a period of time or transfer to another city.  As long as you don't say, "I went there because every other school is TTT" you should be fine.

Thanks, I think that is helpful advice.  Do you think I should bring a writing sample / list of references?  Neither place has requested either but I suppose they would be good to have on hand.  Who do people generally use as refereces, law professors they have a good relationship with?  Former employers (if in an unrelated field even?)  I suppose I will be spending today and tomarrow reading lots about interviews, probably some good stuff on vault somewhere.


I did not bring a list of references or a writing sample.  One firm requested a writing sample, which I mailed with my resume and cover letter. 

The best advice I can give you is to get a list beforehand of all the attorneys you will be meeting with.  That way you can make specific references to their type of practice, a prominent case they tried, book they published, etc. when you ask them questions.  Questions that you ask them serve a few purposes, one of which is purely informative--like asking how many different practice areas you will work with during the summer.  The other purpose is to make them think you are really intelligent, capable, and prepared.  So when it comes time to ask them a question, instead of something general like, "So why did you pick this firm?" you can say, "You went to school in California and spent some time in a New York firm.  What made you decide to move to Atlanta?  What led you to this firm in particular?"  Way, way more impressive.

jacy85

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Re: 1L SA Interviews, secondary market, connections, what to expect? Advice?
« Reply #8 on: January 06, 2008, 06:28:09 PM »
I agree with TPS's advice for doing research.  I would bring several copies of everything in a small portfolio/folder thing, including your resume, transcript or grade report, a list of references and a writing sample.  You may never even open the folder, but if you're asked for something, it's great to be prepared instead of saying, "oh, I don't have it, but I can send it to you!"

Bob Loblaw Esq.

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Re: 1L SA Interviews, secondary market, connections, what to expect? Advice?
« Reply #9 on: January 06, 2008, 06:57:01 PM »
I got a lot of the "why XX school?" during my interiews.  I was pretty honest.  I said that I was looking for a school that would give me the most options, would enable me to be the most mobile, and would enable me to re-enter the workplace if I had to leave for a period of time or transfer to another city.  As long as you don't say, "I went there because every other school is TTT" you should be fine.

Thanks, I think that is helpful advice.  Do you think I should bring a writing sample / list of references?  Neither place has requested either but I suppose they would be good to have on hand.  Who do people generally use as refereces, law professors they have a good relationship with?  Former employers (if in an unrelated field even?)  I suppose I will be spending today and tomarrow reading lots about interviews, probably some good stuff on vault somewhere.


I did not bring a list of references or a writing sample.  One firm requested a writing sample, which I mailed with my resume and cover letter. 

The best advice I can give you is to get a list beforehand of all the attorneys you will be meeting with.  That way you can make specific references to their type of practice, a prominent case they tried, book they published, etc. when you ask them questions.  Questions that you ask them serve a few purposes, one of which is purely informative--like asking how many different practice areas you will work with during the summer.  The other purpose is to make them think you are really intelligent, capable, and prepared.  So when it comes time to ask them a question, instead of something general like, "So why did you pick this firm?" you can say, "You went to school in California and spent some time in a New York firm.  What made you decide to move to Atlanta?  What led you to this firm in particular?"  Way, way more impressive.

while you're correct about the importance of researching the firms and interviewers with whom you meet, those questions really are not impressive and do not show that you are intelligent, capable, etc... The fact of the matter is, EVERYONE asks those questions.  And if EVERYONE asks the interviewer the same boring questions like "oh, i saw you went to school here, but chose to work there" or "specifically what led you to firm X", they are no longer good questions.  If you ask the same lame questions that everyone asks, you'll just become part of the big stack of resumes. 

So, try to think of original questions that you are truly interested in.  Everyone knows you could care less why specifically did interviewer X chose firm Y.  On top of that, I guarantee you that if you ask this question, you will get a canned answer from almost every atty you meet with.  S/he will give you the whole "oh the people here are just so great, better than you can find anywhere else, and you really get a sense that the firm is very cordial to its attys and really looks out for them, blah blah blah. 

Ask questions that you really want answered.  If you're interested in atty's personal experiences working in a particular practice group, ask them to tell you a personal/everyday story.  If your're doing a call back, pick a few questions that you really want answered and ask every atty you meet with so you can compare responses. 

Everyone is expected to be capable and prepared, but that only gets you so far in an interview.  So, show the interviewer that you are truly interested in the position.  And do that by asking real questions.