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Author Topic: Callback prep: researching a practice area  (Read 1692 times)

the royal We

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Callback prep: researching a practice area
« on: September 21, 2008, 02:12:30 PM »
Does anyone know of a good website to research different practice areas?  I told the screening interviewers at a firm that gave me a callback that I want to work for them because of their commercial real estate practice (true).  I'd like to be able to at least pretend to know a little bit about this type of practice; I haven't been able to find any blogs etc on the topic.

Thanks for your help.

Lurking Third Year

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Re: Callback prep: researching a practice area
« Reply #1 on: September 21, 2008, 03:28:35 PM »
Does anyone know of a good website to research different practice areas?  I told the screening interviewers at a firm that gave me a callback that I want to work for them because of their commercial real estate practice (true).  I'd like to be able to at least pretend to know a little bit about this type of practice; I haven't been able to find any blogs etc on the topic.

Thanks for your help.

Sounds obvious, but doesn't the firm's website describe that practice?  If not, try looking at competitors' websites. 

ProfessorPlum

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Re: Callback prep: researching a practice area
« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2008, 04:58:41 PM »
If the firm is discussed in Chambers & Partners http://www.chambersandpartners.com then it is likely C&P will mention big deals that the practice group has been involved in, as well as the star attorneys.  Vault often includes this info--your career services department at school should be able to provide you with Vault information.  Otherwise, try the firm's website, google, reading attorney bios, etc.

Learning a little bit about an important deal or case is one of the best ways to show genuine interest, impress your interviewers, and keep the conversation going, in my opinion.
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naturallybeyoutiful

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Re: Callback prep: researching a practice area
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2008, 06:48:50 PM »
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the royal We

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Re: Callback prep: researching a practice area
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2008, 12:49:32 AM »
Does anyone know of a good website to research different practice areas?  I told the screening interviewers at a firm that gave me a callback that I want to work for them because of their commercial real estate practice (true).  I'd like to be able to at least pretend to know a little bit about this type of practice; I haven't been able to find any blogs etc on the topic.

Thanks for your help.

Sounds obvious, but doesn't the firm's website describe that practice?  If not, try looking at competitors' websites. 

It does, but I was looking for something a little more in-depth than that.  Something that would allow me to discuss the particular practice group in some detail, showing that I am following trends in the area.

the royal We

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Re: Callback prep: researching a practice area
« Reply #5 on: September 22, 2008, 10:59:44 AM »
Have you ever gone on a callback before?  That sort of thing isn't really necessary and also could lock you into one practice group.  Firms don't want to hire you if they can't give you work in an area you seem committed to (and firm websites are generally pretty misleading about the scope of the work in particular offices).  If commercial real estate isn't hiring (and real estate finance is down generally), you could wind up without a summer offer from the firm or, worse, you could wind up no-offered at the end of the summer.

I'd go general and just say "One thing I'd like to try out over the summer is some commercial real estate work."

I've been on several callbacks.  In discussions with this firm, I've expressed my interest in commercial real estate law, which for them is still booming, and they have been marketing that fact to me.  Your point is well taken about getting locked into a practice group, or getting no offered.  I agree with your statement about firm websites being misleading.