Thursday, September 27, 2012

How to Avoid Common Mistakes in Your Job Search Follow-Up

by Harry Urschel

Follow up, after an introduction call, after sending your resume, or after an interview can have a great impact on whether you are selected for the next steps in the hiring process, and in getting the job. It’s one of the things job seekers often seek advice about, and one that many don’t do very well.

As an Executive Recruiter, I often coach candidates I’m working with on how they should be following up with the potential employer, yet it still often doesn't get handled well.

Here are my observations…

Disconnect Between Good Practice, Good Intentions, and Reality

Common Job Seeker Fears/Excuses

Monday, September 24, 2012

How to Write Your Own Recommendation Letter

by Rachel Marx

So you’ve developed a great relationship with your professor, mentor or supervisor, and it’s time to ask for a letter of recommendation. While the standard practice is for references to write their own recommendation letters, it’s becoming increasingly common for time-strapped individuals to ask you to pen the first draft of a letter yourself. This is a great opportunity for you to make sure that you get a stellar recommendation letter that highlights the most relevant skills and experiences you have to offer.

Here, some tips for writing your own letter of recommendation.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Tips for Handling Job Hunting Stress

Tips for Handling Job Hunting Stress
What can you do when you do feel overwhelmed or desperate, or both?
Take a Break from Job Hunting
  • First of all, step away from the computer or walk away from whatever is triggering you at that time. (Try to exit politely if you are talking to a potential job contact! But still, take some deeps breaths and then walk away.)
  • Do something else non-job search related.
  • Go for a walk, call a friend, play with your dog, go to the gym or for a run or bike ride.
  • Do something that makes you feel better or is some sort of a endorphin stimulator!
I know your instinct when you are feeling this way is to fire off 10 more résumés or write 10 emails to potential contacts but do not do it in that mindframe.

Read full article here.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Simple Interview Dress for Men

by Leo Mulvihill, Jr

The Basic, Boring, Uncontroversial Interview Outfit

Remember that an interview is not a time to show off your style prowess. The whole point is to sell yourself — you grades, experience personality, whatever — to the interviewer. You don’t want your outfit to be so loud as to drown out the words you’re speaking.

With that in mind, here are the basics you need for an interview:

Monday, September 17, 2012

Get the Interview: 5 Tips for Leaving a Great Voicemail


Too many times job applicants prepare phenomenal resumes but fail to secure a physical interview.
Often times, this is because of improper phone etiquette, poor voice presentation and bad voicemails.
Here are five things to improve interview rates and make a fabulous presentation over the phone using voicemail.

1. Never Underestimate the Power of the Phone

In our digital age job applicants commonly tweet or text to stay in touch with friends. The telephone seems like a cumbersome and slow form of communication.

However, people over the age of 35 are much more comfortable using the phone and they will commonly use it as a screening tool for applicants. Phone interview skills are essential across all employment levels.

High-powered consultants as well as café workers will all usually face a phone interview and need to use voicemail sometime during the interview process. This is first physical contact and it is critical to make a fabulous impression.

Read the full article here.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

How to Conduct an Effective Informational Interview


One thing that will gain you interviews with your target companies is by talking with more people who are “in-the-know.” Do this by conducting more interviews of your own.

The informational interview is an effective way to build your network and gather information to move your career forward.

Informational interviews can actually be quite fun. Meeting for coffee, or briefly in someone’s office, takes the pressure off both parties.

The job seeker is simply asking for information, guidance, and advice. The person being interviewed is just providing that information and expertise.

No one is saying, “Please give me a job!” And, no one is making an offer. It’s just a chat.
That’s right — this is not about asking for a job! Not right away, at least. As a job seeker, you should hope to get some questions answered relevant to the industry you are in, the company where your interviewee works, and the company’s competitors.

You should ask about good ways to network in the field. Getting names of other professionals to contact for further informational interviews is a great result.

Here’s how to do it:

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

2012-2013 NALP/PSJD Federal Legal Employment Opportunities Guide Now Available

New release:

The 2012-13 NALP/PSJD Federal Legal Employment Opportunities Guide is now available for free downloading. 

The Guide offers a broad-based review of different career opportunities and paths to employment for law students and graduates who are interested in federal legal careers.

Expert Opinion: Ten Tips to Nail Prosecutor and Public Defender Interviews

By: Chris Teague*

General Tips
  1. Be wary of answering questions by stating that you would check with your supervisor. Hypos are designed to see how you react when confronted with very difficult fact patterns. While your gut reaction may be to immediately consult your supervisor for help, it is important that you avoid the urge to “pass the buck” and instead deal with the difficult situation head-on. If you believe the circumstances warrant the involvement of your supervisor, it may be OK to say so, but make sure your answer doesn’t end there. Elaborate on this response and give your own assessment of the facts.
  2. Show your work. Even if your answer is wrong (keep in mind that some hypotheticals don’t have one correct answer), make sure to talk through your analysis. The interviewer will likely give you credit for demonstrating a logical approach or asking thoughtful questions, even if you ultimately arrive at the wrong answer.
Read full article here.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Networking Without Treating People as a Means to an End: Six Tips for Students

by Anna Marshall, Career Counselor, The George Washington University School of Law

1. Remember that you already have a network! Your friends, family, classmates, coworkers, and former employers count as networking contacts.

2. Expand your network by reaching out to people in whom you are genuinely interested. You may think you want to litigate, but the best way to confirm that (or rule it out) is to talk to someone who does it.

3. You are not asking for a handout. All you are asking from someone is a few minutes of time and some information, which most people are ready, willing, and able to give.

4. Stay in touch and follow up with your networking contacts. Keep them updated not only during your job search, but also throughout your law school career. That way, you are not just talking to them because you need something from them, but because you genuinely want to maintain and develop your relationship.

5. Reciprocate! Networking is a two-way street. If you feel awkward about asking someone for advice or some of their time, offer to buy them coffee or lunch. Though your contact may not have a referral or a job for you right now, helping that contact now means they are in your debt.

6. Your top priority may be securing a job, but by networking to expand your contacts (even when you have already landed a position or are not currently job searching), you are increasing your chances of hearing about jobs that may not be posted.

The overarching principle of networking is that there is no rule against establishing and maintaining relationships on purpose. The key is following up. Keep your network up to date by communicating your job search and life experiences, and always remember to thank people for helping you.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Cover Letter Tips: Ignore the Format at Your Own Peril

by Susan Gainen

A first-class cover letter requires laser-like focus on how an applicant's skills might mesh with the needs of a prospective employer. It is the first writing sample and the first chance to create a bad impression.

Sadly, career services and recruitment professionals note that a significant number of students do not  know what a business letter should look like, thus providing them with an instant "clueless loser" aura which can be tough to shed. Select from one of the two formats at the bottom of this post, and you will be correct.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Working for the United Nations Office of Legal Affairs

The United Nations is the flagship entity in the international sector, and has opportunities for lawyers at headquarters and in the field to work in international law. Similar to the State Department’s Office of the Legal Adviser, the UN has a central Office of Legal Affairs, based at headquarters in New York. The Office of Legal Affairs (OLA) serves as in-house counsel to the UN Secretary-General, the Secretariat as a whole, and the rest of the UN organs. The OLA is lead by an Under-Secretary-General, an Assistant Secretary-General, and staffed by 160 attorneys. The Under-Secretary General serves as chief legal counsel to the UN.

Read full article here.

For more information on the UN’s OLA, go to:

On employment opportunities at OLA, see:

On UN YPP, go to: