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Author Topic: Very Important Informational Interview !! Help!  (Read 1264 times)

coquita

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Very Important Informational Interview !! Help!
« on: January 24, 2009, 06:43:22 AM »
Ok,

So I think my husband finally realized that networking is crucial to law students in this economy. Through his job he knows a really prominent lawyer in the area. After telling the lawyer about me and giving him my resume, the attorney was impressed and surprised that I don't have a job yet. He told my husband that he wants to meet with me in February to figure out what I want to do after I graduate. He said he would then introduce me to one of the equity partners of a large firm, and possibly one of the biggest venture capitalists in the region. And he would possibly offer me a job if those efforts failed.

I am feeling seriously intimidated by this, because although I have a great academic background, my work background has been public interest. Also the equity partner he wants to introduce me to belongs to a firm that rejected me for OCI. If if anyone has some informational interview tips or advice I would very grateful. I don't have any other offers right now, so I really do need to hit this out of the park.

jacy85

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Re: Very Important Informational Interview !! Help!
« Reply #1 on: January 24, 2009, 09:03:31 AM »
You have a couple of weeks; get the Guerrilla TActics book if you don't.  Walton had some really, really great tips for informational interviews in there.

I think the most important thing for you will be controlling nerves.  Your resume impressed him and he saw great potential; remember that you are the one behind that resume. And thinking that this is "now or never" will just put more pressure, making you even more nervous about this.  You go to a T10, you're networking (or at least beginning to network), you WILL get a job even if this doesn't pan out.

Stole Your Nose!

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Re: Very Important Informational Interview !! Help!
« Reply #2 on: January 24, 2009, 10:49:57 AM »
The guy already wants to help you.  The best thing you can do is be honest. "I think a lot of firms were concerned by my public interest work, but I am very interested in firm/corporate work."  Tell him where you want to be, what you want to do, and make pleasant small talk. 

He will likely forward your resume on to his contacts anyway.  A lot of people are very well-versed in the job market favor-trade and do it all the time (even for people that they haven't met!).  Whether it will have a lot of weight with the equity partner will depend on their relationship, how often he's pushed for people in the past, whether the people he's pushed for have been good or not, and whether or not he aggressively follows up (you're more likely to get at least an interview if he brings you up on a phone conversation vs. an e-mail forwarded to the secretary), the firm's position (if they're oversubscribed, they're oversubscribed). You can't control any of those factors; all you can do is have a pleasant lunch with this person and be friendly.  You can also follow up with him, just tread carefully the line between assertive and pushy.

Matthies

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Re: Very Important Informational Interview !! Help!
« Reply #3 on: January 24, 2009, 12:18:03 PM »
The guy already wants to help you.  The best thing you can do is be honest. "I think a lot of firms were concerned by my public interest work, but I am very interested in firm/corporate work."  Tell him where you want to be, what you want to do, and make pleasant small talk. 

He will likely forward your resume on to his contacts anyway.  A lot of people are very well-versed in the job market favor-trade and do it all the time (even for people that you haven't ).  Whether it will have a lot of weight with the equity partner will depend on their relationship, how often he's pushed for people in the past, whether the people he's pushed for have been good or not, and whether or not he aggressively follows up (you're more likely to get at least an interview if he brings you up on a phone conversation vs. an e-mail forwarded to the secretary), the firm's position (if they're oversubscribed, they're oversubscribed). You can't control any of those factors; all you can do is have a pleasant lunch with this person and be friendly.  You can also follow up with him, just tread carefully the line between assertive and pushy.
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This is the key, you need to make some personal connections during your first meeting that you can use as reasons to contact him again. You need to walk that fine line between keeping the relationship open and active and being a pest.

Get the book Jacy suggests NOW and read the parts that are germane to you. Also do some searching on the net for networking and informational tips. The last thing you want to do is walk away from this meeting and not contact the guy for a few weeks, bad move. E-mail him short up to date info. Ask to meet for coffee a week or two later.

If he mentions any practice areas he thinks you might like, do some research on it (law review articles and bar association news letters are good sources) so the next time you talk with him you can report back what you have learned and how that fits in with your career goals.

Good luck, its going to be uncomfortable to do this, trust me, but if you do it right and build a relationship on this one meeting the payoffs can be huge.   
*In clinical studies, Matthies was well tolerated, but women who are pregnant, nursing or might become pregnant should not take or handle Matthies due to a rare, but serious side effect called him having to make child support payments.