01/23/2013 by loyolalawcso
The advice we give all students, no matter who they are interviewing with, is: get informed, be ready to engage in a conversation, ask lots of questions, show curiosity and, essentially, manage your interviews. You’d be amazed at how many lawyers don’t know how to interview, so it is up to you to ensure the interview progresses smoothly. There is no such thing as being overly prepared for an interview. In addition to being ready to talk about yourself – your background, education and experience – you must also be ready to interview the interviewer.
Do your homework. Read as much literature on the employer as possible and on the people who will be interviewing you. Go to the employer’s website and pay attention to the words they use to describe themselves. Read the ―Careers section of the employer’s website, where they often describe the type of people they hire and the skills they seek. Also check out any press releases on the website, which will reveal recent cases the employer worked on and other news the employer deems important. Research the lawyers who will interview you. If you don’t know who they are, call or email the person who arranged the interview and ask (nicely). Speak with anyone who may know something about the employer — Career Services, your professors, friends and Loyola alumni. Always check online resources such as employer websites, Lexis, Westlaw, and PSLawNet. Google the employer – it is always surprising what I learn about legal employers and people by doing a simple Google search.
Go to the interview ready to talk about yourself and ask questions about them – questions that show you are interested in the employer, have already researched them, and want to learn more. Avoid asking questions that can be an-swered with simple research or questions that are confronta-tional or too self-interested. Prepare a list of ten really good questions that are directly relevant to the employer and the work you will do for them if you get hired. If you don’t know what questions to ask, schedule a quick mock interview with your career counselor – you will be so much better prepared for your interviews after a mock interview – they really are essential.
If you go to your interviews informed about the employer, ready to talk about yourself, and ready to ask lots of questions, you and your interviewer will never be at a loss for words.
Marianne Deagle, Assistant Dean for Career Services