“BY FAILING TO PREPARE, YOU ARE PREPARING TO FAIL” - PART 1

by Melissa Tang on 08 November 2021
“BY FAILING TO PREPARE, YOU ARE PREPARING TO FAIL” - PART 1

Congratulations – you’ve secured yourself an interview. But what next? Where do you go from here?

It’s only natural to feel nervous and of course, excited about an interview, but it’s important to project a sense of confidence, present yourself well, and demonstrate that yes - you are the best person for the role. But how?  

Thorough preparation – this is key!

  1. Interview preparation starts with your CV

Think of your CV as essentially a crib sheet for the interviewer. If it is on your CV, it’s quite reasonable to expect you could be asked about it.

So, make sure you know your CV inside and out. 

  1. Research the interviewer/s, the team and of course the firm

Have a look at your interviewer/s background/s – LinkedIn and firm profiles are always a good place to start.

Find any common ground with interviewer/s – have you heard them speaking at a seminar you have attended? Have they been in the press recently? Take note of any deals that you could possibly talk about. Have they or their team won any awards?

It is quite common to be asked, why you are interested in working for the firm you are meeting.

Make sure you have thought about this and have an answer ready for this one! People have often let themselves down on this basic question.

Tap into your network of contacts to get any insight into the firm.

You may also be asked how you perceive the firm’s position in its industry, who the firm's competitors are and what its competitive advantages are.

The goal is to learn about your interviewer/s backgrounds and interests so that it will be easier to establish a rapport. Show interest in them and their role in the company.

  1. Anticipate the questions you might be asked

It’s important to think early on about the questions you may be asked, so that you can prepare an articulate and polished response - you’ll be surprised how many questions you can often pick out from a job description. You don’t want to be caught off-guard by any “challenging” questions.

Another common question is about, what you have to bring to the role or why the firm should hire you.

This isn’t the time to be modest. Make sure you know how to talk about both your personal and technical strengths, though equally, don’t be over confident either.

Different firms have different interview processes – competency based, technical etc. but we are here to help you with this and run you through the format of your interview.

  1. Conduct a mock interview – practice, practice, practice

It's one thing to go your interview prepared with a mental answer and it's another challenge entirely to say it out loud in a confident and convincing way.

I often find myself pacing up and down the living room, speaking out loud to myself, rehearsing the answers to questions I might be asked (and sounding liking a mad woman) but trust me, it helps. Not only does it help to build my confidence and create a sense of inner calm, but also with developing more succinct and fluid responses.

Remember to speak clearly, maintain eye contact with the interviewer/s and breathe.

Ask friends or family members to listen to you – they can act as the interviewers but whatever you do, make sure your practice consists of speaking aloud. Rehearsing your answer in your mind won't cut it.  

This may seem like common sense, but on the day of your interview ensure you turn up on time – 10 minutes beforehand is perfect. 

Look out for Part 2…coming soon!

For further information, confidential advice, or a chat about the market and opportunities available to you, please feel free to get in touch with the team at G2 Legal.

About the author

Melissa joined G2 Legal in 2018. She has several years recruitment experience and specialises in working with qualified Solicitors, from NQ to Partner, as well as experienced fee earners. Melissa focusses on permanent and contract opportunities.