The legal industry is a competitive one. However, there are many paths you can take that will allow you to land your dream job as a lawyer.
Whether you want to specialize in criminal or corporate law, or simply see yourself working in private practice or at a firm there’s no reason why your dreams won’t come true if you put in the work and follow these tips!
1. Exceed Expectations
Do more than is asked of you. Lawyers are often assigned to specific tasks, but there’s a lot of room for extra work. Go above and beyond the call of duty by staying late, taking on new projects, and generally making yourself indispensable to the team.
Be proactive. Don’t just wait around for things to happen to take charge of your career by suggesting improvements in your department or company, whether it’s changing up email chains or organizing a networking event outside of work hours.
Be a team leader and motivator (and build and contribute to said team). This isn’t so much about getting power over others as it is setting an example for everyone else by showing that you’re passionate about your job and genuinely care about those around you.
You’ll be surprised how much respect this will earn from both coworkers and clients alike!
2. Get Experience
To get your dream job, you must first land a position in the industry. And it’s easier than ever before to do so. That’s because most law schools are now offering students the opportunity to take unpaid internships with some of their top alumni networks.
These programs give you valuable experience while also building up your resume and helping you network with people who may hire you in the future.
There are a ton of ways for law students to obtain these valuable opportunities:
- Attend career fairs at your school’s career center (or other organizations)
- Reach out directly via email or phone call
- Apply for an internship program through your student government or alumni association
3. Make A Good Impression
- Dress appropriately.
- Be on time.
- Be polite.
- Be prepared.
Be yourself and be an active listener when it comes to interacting with others at the interview, but don’t let that personality shine too brightly you’ll want to demonstrate a certain degree of professionalism as well, so don’t go overboard with jokes unless they are really funny!
Jokes will work best if you can also show how funny you are by being an active listener and contributing to conversations rather than monopolizing them all for yourself (which often happens when people try too hard).
If someone asks how school was today, don’t just say “fine” and then immediately switch topics back to yourself again… Figure out more things about their lives first before letting them know about yours!
If applicable for your position: Don’t forget any previous jobs on your resume or CV either; employers love seeing passion like this because it shows them exactly what kind of employee they might get should they hire someone like You!
4. Ask For What You Need
Imagine that you’ve just been handed a big job. You’re charged with finding new clients, working with your partner to close deals, and keeping everything running smoothly.
But then one day your partner comes in and tells you that they need to work from home for a few days because their kid’s school is having some issues.
You could tell them that this isn’t okay and even if it was, what about all of the other partners who have kids? Or maybe you could ask them not to take anything out on their kids because of how frustrated they are with their careers.
Or maybe…just maybe…you should ask for some help so that everything stays on track without missing a beat! If this sounds like something that might happen in real life, then it’s time for another lesson: ask for what you need!
5. Develop & Stand Out
Develop your skills. You may have the best work ethic and strongest personality, but if you don’t have the right skills to back it up, none of that will matter.
Make yourself indispensable by developing a wide range of practical knowledge in areas like accounting, tax law, litigation strategy, and more.
Stand out from the crowd. It’s not enough to have an extensive knowledge base; you need to stand out from other applicants who are applying for the same job as well which means being able to communicate that knowledge in an engaging way that gets attention from those around you (and who are making hiring decisions).
This means becoming comfortable taking charge during meetings or presentations; knowing how best to communicate with different types of personalities;
Asking questions instead of waiting patiently for answers; being willing as well as assertive when presenting ideas; adapting your style depending on the audience are all skills that will help differentiate yourself from others vying for a position at this company!
6. Don’t Give Up
You are not alone in your job search, and that’s a good thing. There are many resources available to help you find the best jobs for lawyers. The most important thing you can do is to keep trying new things until you get what you want.
If it doesn’t work out this time around, try again later you will eventually land that dream job as a lawyer!
7. Use Your Strengths To Your Advantage
When it comes to using your strengths, you will want to focus on the qualities that make you unique. This can be difficult because we often focus on our weaknesses and tend to overlook our strengths.
We also tend to think of our attributes as something we were born with and cannot change, but this is not true!
For example, if one of your strengths is being a good listener – ask yourself what can be improved upon in the way that you listen. Could you ask better questions? Is there a way for you to make sure that people feel heard and understood when they speak with you?
A good way to identify your strengths is by completing an assessment tool like StrengthsFinder 2.0® or VIA Character Strengths Survey (VIA-CS) which will help guide conversations about how these particular strengths may apply to specific job functions.
Once identified, use them in every aspect of your job search: from writing cover letters & resumes; conducting informational interviews; networking at events; connecting with recruiters/interviewing coaches/mentors etcetera…
8. Review Your Resume
- Check for spelling and grammar.
- Make sure your resume is formatted correctly.
Ensure that the information on your resume is tailored to the position you are applying for, including:
Company/organization name(s) where applicable (for example, if you worked at a law firm called Smith & Associates, but were employed by John Smith, only list it as Smith & Associates)
Dates of employment (month and year) rather than ‘from’ and ‘to’ dates; this is more professional-looking than an arbitrary date range such as “May 2017.”
Ensure that all contact information is accurate and up to date this includes both email addresses and phone numbers so potential employers can reach you easily if necessary!
Make sure these are saved in several places so they’re accessible every time someone requests them from you;
Also, make sure one has been added to your LinkedIn profile as well as online profiles like Facebook or Twitter accounts so they don’t get lost while searching through these sites later on!
9. Tackling Any Job Interview Nerves
Interview nerves are normal and you’re not alone. More than 50% of people feel at least some pre-interview stress, according to PreparedU’s survey. The good news is the more you know about what may happen and the better prepared you are, the less nervous you’ll be.
Know as much as possible about the company and job role before going into an interview so that when asked questions, it can help guide how to answer them.
Know who will be interviewing you and do your research on them too – this will help in creating rapport with them as well as understanding where their interests lie so that if there’s anything specific they want from a potential candidate (e.g., someone who has experience working in a particular industry).
Then it can be addressed during a conversation without any awkwardness or tension arising between both parties later on down the road due to miscommunication between the interviewer(s) vs applicant(s).
10. Personalize The Work Environment
Make sure your work environment is comfortable and free from distractions, stress, conflict, negativity, and hostility.
11. Reach Out To The Executive Team
It’s never a bad idea to reach out to executives in your target company. You want to make sure you’re on the radar of these individuals, so they know who you are and can refer you when an opportunity arises.
This is a simple yet powerful way of increasing your chances of being hired by this firm.
To reach out, send them a note every once in a while that lets them know how excited you are about working at their company and/or why you think they’re doing great things.
Be sure to mention any shared connections (i.e., your roommate from college is now working there) or previous experience with the company (i.e., you interned there last summer).
If appropriate for whatever position it is that interests you most, mention what role would be perfect for someone with your background and experience level and why!
Land Your Dream Job as a Lawyer.
Ready to land the job of your dreams? Follow these tips to get started:
- Get experience
- Make a good impression
- Ask for what you need
- Develop & Stand Out
- Don’t give up!
There’s a lot to think about when it comes to landing your dream job as a lawyer. But, don’t be afraid! With these tips, we hope that you will see how easy it can be if you put in the effort and work hard enough.
Remember: with hard work comes success, so keep going until you find yourself exactly where you want to be!