Young lawyers & Big Law, Summer Associate Programs, & Networking
Achieving Success. Then and Now Young Lawyers in Big Law
What has changed? (Post-September 2008)
1) The numerous Elite
The “elite” now come in all shapes and sizes from boutiques to mega-firms of 4,000 lawyers.
2) The versatile JD
3) The Competition
4) The Technology
The result: Success is being redefined.
On Campus Interviews and Summer Associate Programs
Tips for Law Students:
It’s not a game.
The interview process is year-round. The summer associate program does not guarantee you a job with a firm.
Interviewing Must Knows
Have a stellar polished resume. When meeting with a firm, do your homework. Know the key partners, practice areas, recent big matters, firm clients, etc. Understand the lawyer’s uniform. Don’t be late to interviews. Arrive early. Be direct with answers. Make sure you communicate what you want and not be flippant. Be respectful, confident and friendly.
Lawyer Sales Tip
Practical networking tips for law students to veteran law professionals
1) Practice your networking
Talk to strangers and learn how to ask good questions. Push yourself out of your comfort zone. Find ways to add value to new relationships.
2) Set goals
Focus on the key objectives whether developing a relationship with the law school dean, approaching the newly appointed general counsel of a Fortune 500, identify and approach the managing partner of 5 key law firms in your city to get a summer associate position or begin shadowing, etc.
3) Create and manage a database of relationships
There’s numerous CRMs but start with one. Import your business cards and e-mail address books. Add your notes from conversations and their personal contact information. Start now and start somewhere.
4) Create a calendar system to follow up with people
Get in the habit of reconnecting. Create a system of reconnecting at some frequency depending on the goals you are wanting to accomplish. New relationships should have a shorter follow up period of like 48 hours whereas existing relationships could be every month or quarter.
5) Get connected on LinkedIn
(My personal addition to the subject) LinkedIn is by far the most powerful social media network. Use it to professional brand yourself. Schedule 30 days of relevant content (through Hootsuite) to stay in front of your connections. I call this the bill board effect. More on LinkedIn click here.