Learn how to Ace that Interview

Have you ever noticed that there are certain things we are not taught in school that can make a big difference in whether we land a great job or miss out on one? One of those things is knowing how to interview for jobs.

Interviews can be nerve-wracking, especially when it comes to landing a job as a lawyer. The legal industry is highly competitive, and yet is important to present yourself in the best possible light. There are some implied practices not codified in any law that guides how interviews are conducted. It is therefore important to keep yourself updated on the do’s and don’ts.

Here are a few tips that can help you nail that interview:


1.      Research the Company: Before you go for an interview, research the law firm or company that you are interviewing with. This will help you understand their business, culture, and values. You can use this information to tailor your responses to their questions and demonstrate your keenness for the position. For example, if the company specializes in Litigation, be prepared to discuss your experience or interest in that area.


2.      Prepare for common interview questions: There are some common interview questions that you can prepare for in advance, such as "What are your strengths and weaknesses?" or "Why should we hire you? "Prepare thoughtful and relevant responses to these questions that showcase your skills and experience. For example, if you're asked about your weaknesses, you might say something like "I tend to be a perfectionist, but I've learned to priorities my work and delegate tasks when necessary."


3.      Dress appropriately: As a lawyer, you are expected to present a professional image. This is very important before you become part of the company and well-versed on its dress code and culture. You should dress appropriately for your interview. Men should wear a business suit and tie, while women should opt for a business suit or a smart dress. Avoid flashy jewelry, loud patterns, and anything that could be considered distracting.

4.      Don’t be late: Being late to an interview is a big NO-NO. Not only does it show a lack of respect for the interviewer's time, but it also suggests that you are disorganized and unreliable. Plan ahead to ensure you arrive at least 10-15 minutes early at the interview location. This will give you time to find the interview room, use the restroom, and calm your nerves.


5.      Don’t bad-mouth previous employers or colleagues: While it's important, to be honest about why you left your previous job or why you're looking for a new opportunity, avoid bad-mouthing your previous employers or colleagues. This can make you come across as unprofessional and difficult to work with. Instead, focus on the positive aspects of your past experiences and how they have prepared you for the position you are applying for.


6.      Avoid excessive talking or interrupting the interviewer during the interview it's important to provide detailed responses to interview questions, make sure you don't talk too much or interrupt the interviewer. This can come across as arrogant or overly eager, and it can make it difficult for the interviewer to get a word in edgewise. Take the time to listen carefully to each question and respond thoughtfully.



7.      Be Confident: Confidence is key during an interview. Speak clearly and confidently and maintain eye contact with the interviewer. This will show that you're confident in your abilities and believe in yourself.


8.      Ask Questions: At the end of the interview, the interviewer will usually ask if you have any questions. This is your opportunity to ask questions about the company, the role, or anything else that's important to you. Asking questions shows that you're genuinely interested in the job and want to learn more.



9.      Follow up the interview, it's always a good idea to follow up with a thank you email. This shows that you're grateful for the opportunity to interview and reiterates your interest in the job.

Nail your interview with these do's and don'ts: dresssharp, be punctual, research, stay positive, prep for common questions, andlisten well. Follow these tips to boost your success. Good luck!