Are you looking for your first legal job? First legal job in the US? First legal job in a new area of activity? Have you been unemployed for a number of years or in a non-legal position and want to get back on track? Have you been working outside of the US for a while?
Legal recruiters do not work with entry level candidates because most companies have their own entry level hiring procedures that do not involve recruiters. What steps can you take yourself?
Make a list of yours concrete skills. Think about which roles your specific skills are best suited for. Remember, companies may not be able to train you on the basics.
NETWORK. NETWORK. You have a much better chance of getting your next job through personal connections. And keep connected as soon as you get your next job. The network should be authentic and ongoing and not just job hunting.
LinkedIn, LinkedIn, LinkedIn. Connect with people, but make sure they are meaningful connections. Make sure your LinkedIn profile is in tip top shape before you start contacting them.
Work your Alumni networks – Students, lawyers and former colleagues from law firms. Ask others on their networks for warm intros.
Remember it Career services is not just for current students. Call your Career Services office anytime! Again, ask for warm intros.
Establishing more and more law firms Alumni affairs Offices. Call your previous company!
Consider attending one City or state bar association and get involved in one of the committees.
Work with a more experienced lawyer write an article or take part in a business development activity. Even if you are unemployed, you can still work towards your career and resume.
To install Online notifications for vacancies. Ask me for a list of on-line internal job search resources.
Start with the request Information interviews, especially from those you already have a connection with. Do your homework before making the request and certainly before the interview. Structure the conversation so that you don't waste the other person's time. Include the timeframe and offer to email questions in advance. Make sure you offer something in return (by sharing an article with them that they might find interesting, etc.) and show appreciation for the person's time.
Be open You don't want to sell yourself briefly, but put yourself in the employer's shoes. They are taking a great chance on you. You know you are great, but they don't know that yet. Don't hesitate to miss a good opportunity just because it's not perfect. You don't have to stick with that next job forever. Especially if you want to move geographically, it might be best to find a job with two-thirds of the boxes checked. Think of this as an 18 to 24 month layover with your feet on the ground and try to be in your true dream job within a few years.
Consider Get help from a third party. If you contact me directly, I'll be happy to share some recommendations for career trainers with legal experience.
If you want Enter the workforce again after being outside the workforce for a whileYou might want to think about it PE funds, consulting companies, or other employers who tend to value “smarts” over certain experiences. They often prefer to match someone with the job. The catch: many of them won't even consider candidates in the top 6 law schools. You can also look at banks and some other larger employers that may have specific ones Workforce Re-entry programs (e.g. JPMorgan Chase).
You can of course also contact me or one of my colleagues at Lateral Link if you are not sure if a recruiter can help you. We can always help you go in the right direction.
Ed. Note: This is the latest in a series of contributions from the Lateral Link team of experts. This post is from Abby Gordon, Senior Director at Lateral Link, who works with candidate lawyers at law firms and in-house research, primarily in Boston, New York and Europe. Prior to joining Lateral Link, Abby spent seven years as a corporate associate at Cleary Gottlieb, focusing on capital markets transactions for Latin American clients in New York and the last five years for European clients in Paris. Abby is from Boston and holds a J.D. with honors from Georgetown University Law Center and a B.A. in government and romantic languages, magna cum laude, from Dartmouth College. Abby also worked with the International Rescue Committee as a Fulbright Fellow in Madrid, Spain. She is a member of bars in New York, Massachusetts, and Maine, and is fluent in French and Spanish (and speaks Portuguese and Italian). You can find more articles from Abby here.
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