Interview Process

One of the worst experiences in law school has been the ritual of submitting applications for summer employment and then going through a series of 20-minute screening interviews that would put a marine drill sergeant to shame when it comes to humiliating and dehumanizing you. Here are my top-ten (least) favorite questions, and how I actually answered them as opposed to how I would have liked to answer them.

1. Why are you interested in this firm?

What I said: Your firm handled (insert name of case I read on their website) which I found to be exciting because it was just like another case I was reading in this class I got an A in. I’ve also asked some (read: none) upper class-men about your office and they said it’s a great work environment.

What I thought: I looked through your attorney roster and saw that you hire people who do not appear to have any honors and come from bad law schools. That made me think that I have a chance to work here.

2. Why did you go to law school?

What I said: I went to law school because I want to be able to make a difference. Legal work allows me to be competitive and to work for justice, both of which are important things in my life.

What I thought: That’s a good question, and I ask myself it daily. I’d have to say the answer is, stupidity.

3. Do you think your grades are an accurate reflection of the kind of work you will do as an attorney?

What I said: Law school has been a challenge, and I think my grades reflect that. More important than my grades, which by the way have steadily improved over my academic career, is my dedication to the work I do. My performance during my summer jobs is the best indicator of how I will work, and you will find that my previous employers were all pleased with me (or at least forgot who I am and so will not remember the fuck ups).

What I thought: My grades are absolutely a good reflection of how I will work. I will put in the minimum amount of effort needed to not get fired, and I will approach my job with contempt and disinterest.

4. What would you say is your greatest weakness?

What I said: My greatest weakness is that I get too personally involved with my work. For instance, when I am working on trial prep, and then the case settles favorably, I feel as though it should have gone to trial anyway, despite knowing that the settlement is what’s best for our firm and our client.

What I thought: Pussy.

5. Tell us about a recent mistake that you have made.

What I said: I accidentally misfiled a case at work that was set to go to trial the next week. As soon as I realized this, I alerted my supervisor and disaster was averted.

What I thought: An even bigger mistake I’ve made has been wasting 20 minutes of my life in this interview instead of drinking beers or watching porn.

6. What do you do for fun?

What I said: I enjoy playing flag football, working out, and reading.

What I thought: When I really want to have fun, I buy a 30 case of Keystone Light and an eight of mushrooms and get dangerously intoxicated before I head to the bar.

7. Tell us about your style of leadership.

What I said: I lead by taking the initiative and working proactively with my peers to come up with solutions.

What I thought: I lead by playing “The Eye of the Tiger” on a boombox while pounding my fist on the table and shouting insults. (It works, I’ve done it)

8. If you don’t get hired by this firm, what will you do?

What I said: I will analyze what I could have done better during the interview and take that knowledge with me into my next interview with [rival firm name].

What I thought: I will breath a sigh of relief that I won’t be working for an asshole like you. Or I will stalk you and slit your throat. I haven’t decided yet.

9. Do you have any questions for us?

What I said: Will I have a key so that I can come in and work on the weekends?

What I thought: Will I have a key so that I can come in and have sex with my clients on my desk on the weekends?

10. We value creativity among our associates. With that in mind, what kind of plant would you be, and why?

What I said: I would be a tree, because they are tall, strong, and live a long life.

What I thought: I would be a tree, so that I could fall on you and kill you

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