1. KNOW WHERE AND WHEN TO INTERVIEW
2. PRACTICE. PRACTICE. PRACTICE. If you believe that the best way to succeed in a professional interview is to wing it, you are delusional. Just as a hitting a home run or a nailing Double Axel on your first try is beyond unlikely, interviewing is a skill that needs to be parsed, practiced, and respected. Without your practice, interviews are a waste of everyone’s time.
3. RESEARCH INDUSTRY ISSUES
- Do you understand the work required in the job for which you are applying? Yes, law clerks do “research and writing,” but what does that mean? How do you start? What tools would you use? When can you know if you are finished?
- What is your prospective employer’s primary work-product problem? Being alert to this can make you a star.
- What kinds of clients or industries does your prospective employer serve? What are the primary issues that these clients present?
4. REVIEW ALL DOCUMENTS
- Are you prepared to speak for 1 minute about every item on your resume?
- Have you read your writing sample in the last 36 hours? Are you prepared to discuss it?
- If your writing sample is other than a 1L brief, are you prepared to explain why you selected the topic?
- Have you scrubbed your electronic persona of things you would not like to see at NYTimes.com or abovethelaw.com?
Quick ways to damage your prospects are “I joined the group and went to two meetings,” “I don’t remember much about my writing sample,” and “Those are pictures from a really fun party.”