Articles From the Team

What not to do at an interview!

This is a little follow up on my previous blog about how to succeed at interviews. This however is about putting the shoe on the other foot and looking at top tips at what not to do at interview!

I recently met with a couple of partners from a well renowned international insurance firm in Birmingham and had a very interesting chat about their views on interviewing candidates. Being a good recruitment consultant means understanding what both my clients and candidates require and helping them achieve a shared goal! This includes ensuring a smooth interview process.

At BCL Legal we make every effort to help our candidates put their best foot forward at interview. In order to this, I rely on BCL Legal’s strong partner relations who in turn are always happy to give me a steer in terms of what candidates need to demonstrate at interview. This helps keep everyone on the same page and in reality it avoids wasting anyone’s time! As we all know time is money!

This leads me on to my conversation with the two partners, who were very candid about candidates that they have had to interview who have attended completely unprepared (thankfully none of these were via BCL Legal!) The partners talked about how some candidates didn’t know anything about the firm, despite everything being on their website. The hole then dug a little deeper when candidates failed to show any knowledge or understanding of the role, displaying no desire for wanting to undertake their area of work.

What was most alarming to hear was that experienced lawyers were unable to quote basic law and processes! This coupled with lack of experience or willingness to embrace new technology because of having only worked in set ways previously. To the partners, this screams inflexibility and ultimately a poor fit for the team and the firm. If you are this underprepared, the partner will ask why you bothered attending the interview at all!

So, based on what I learnt from the partners, here are your top 5 tips of what not to do at interview:-

1. Turn up without having done any preparation 2. Not checking the firm’s website, along with reviewing interviewer’s profiles etc. 3. Not being able to quote basic law and articles relevant to the job 4. Not being able to demonstrate a real drive and enthusiasm for the role 5. Not to end the interview on a negative note i.e. ‘I’d like this job because I will have no job in 3 month’s.

Regarding point 5 above, there is nothing wrong in saying this but its how you frame this to a client, that is important. Whilst they will empathise with your situation, your prospective employer does not want to be made to feel like they’re a last resort. Express your interest in the role, ask what are the future prospects and how that all fits in with your career aspirations.

By not doing those things above and listening to your recruitment consultant when they are trying to help you prepare for your interview, will enable you to obtain top marks at interview and more importantly, get a job offer!

If you are currently looking for new opportunities in insurance litigation, clinical negligence, personal injury and healthcare regulatory in the Midlands, South West, Northern Home Counties and London, please contact BCL Legal or call 0161 819 7475 for a private and confidential chat.

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