Advice for job seekers — part one

Below are some tips for big firm job seekers.  This information will be posted in two parts.

This part provides ideas for demonstrating serious interest and commitment to a particular area of law and for preparing effective resumes.

Demonstrate real interest in a particular area of the law.

► Get out there by writing and speaking on current legal topics

● Start your own blog

● Post comments on other blogs

● Participate in writing/speaking competitions sponsored by your law school, the ABA, and other organizations

● Pick a law journal that will allow you to write about an area of the law you may want to practice

● Write an article for the law school newspaper or the city newspaper

● Comment on an article written in the law school newspaper or the city newspaper

► Obtain hands-on work experience in the area

● Choose the opportunity that will allow you the most heavy lifting

▸ Small, boutique firm that specializes in the area

▸ Government agency

► Take classes in the area or one that compliments the area (i.e., corporate classes for tax law)

Prepare an effective resume.

► Be specific when describing previous experience

● Various litigation matters does not say anything and suggests little heavy lifting

● Describe the nature of the matters and be as specific as client confidentiality will allow

► Focus on your role in the transaction more than the substance of the transaction itself

● What specific items did you work on

● How did you add value (use active verbs) in terms of solutions, efficiency, client/partner satisfaction, etc. (consider supplementing with strong recommendation letter)

► Overall, you want your resume to come alive and tell an attractive story

● If you have had several jobs, you may need more than one page

● Have at least one other person look it over before sending

Image courtesy of alvatore Vuono at