First things first – keep in mind that your appearance will speak volumes – and if you’re not careful, could contradict the image you’re trying to convey – remember you are going for a law job. Take a few moments before the interview to ring up the office and have a chat with the receptionist there. Be polite – apologise for taking up her time but confess that you’re eager to make a good impression and ask about the mode of dress around the office. This is especially important if you’re interviewing with a firm that is a bit off the traditional stance. Whatever she or he tells you, choose your interview outfit just a step or two above the ‘usual’ office wear.
Be sure that anything you choose to wear to a law job interview is scrupulously clean, well-pressed and well-turned-out. As silly as it sounds to have to say it, it’s important enough that it bears keeping in mind. Shoes polished, stockings with no ladders, shirt pressed, tie matching – no one will notice if you’re impeccable, but they’ll be sure to note if you’re not.
Do a bit of research on the firm beforehand so that you know the primary business of the company. Prepare yourself with some good questions to ask when it’s your turn – and it will be your turn. One of the most common mistakes that people make in job interviews is to forget that an interview is a two-way process. You get to ask questions as well – and having some thoughtful questions will convey to your interviewer that you have considered this position carefully. Prepare a list of questions that you can ask about the firm and your position.
Practice talking about yourself out loud. Most people are awkward about discussing themselves, but you’ll have to get over it if you’re going to do well in interviews. You need to be able to sell yourself – and that means speaking confidently about your strengths and buffering your weaknesses to make them more palatable to a prospective employer. Talk in front of a mirror, talk in the bath, talk anywhere you won’t raise eyebrows. Even better, enlist the help of a friend to ask you questions that are most commonly asked during law job interviews.
Rest up the night before the interview. A night out at the pubs will show in your face. Take the evening to relax and get a good night’s rest. It will make a world of difference in your presentation at the interview the next day.