Friday, August 21, 2009

answering some questions

Hello gang: sorry it has been awhile.  Life interrupted blogging.   I think the next several weeks will be interesting as we hear about OCI, fall out from summer 2009 (sorry but I think we will see some heavy no offers), and what the summer 08 class does to fill their time until Jan 2010, assuming that date holds.

What I would (and I bet our readers) would like to hear from you is...what are some creative "getting job" solutions you've heard about - or implemented yourselves?  I'm looking for some stories of creative solutions to the "what do I do till Jan 2010" and "what do I do if I am no offered from Summer 2009?" Or any other job hunting stories you have to share - e.g., post layoffs too.  I can share my thoughts but I always think a broader range of opinions is helpful.

So feel free to chime in.  

Some recent questions: thank you notes after summer associateship.  Yes, good idea to send to HP and others with whom you worked, nothing wrong with showing your appreciation and continued interest. I got some email ones and that was fine with me, but I do think you get a little more "bang" with a note because we get soooo many emails every day that it kind of goes flashing by and opening a note takes a little more time.

A blog reader asked about her intention to move to a new city (and interviewing with firms there) because she is recently engaged.  She wondered if mentioning the engagement somehow worked against her.  No, this is a perfectly reasonable explanation for why you are changing cities and your connection to the area.  And, a very common one we have seen many times.  No worries.  Just explain that your fiance is in new city; you intend to make this your home, and this is the only city in which you are now interviewing.  

Someone I don't know well asked me for a reference.  I would be happy to scream "this person is great" for someone I worked with and I do think is great; however, I really can't do a reference for someone whose work and workplace/social interaction I have never observed.  That would, among other things, affect my credibility with the people to whom I am recommending candidate.  So, be cautious when you think about references.  You really want someone with whom you have worked. Someone who has seen your interactions in the workplace and socially and someone who has reviewed your work product.  And, this is a hard one, but you want someone who you feel will give a glowing, fabulous, enthusiastic recommendation.  When we call to reference check, we can pick up on "he is good" versus "this is the best lawyer since Clarence Darrow and we wish we weren't losing him to your city."  It might just be the person talking and maybe they are not the bubbly type, but if you can target your reference person to be someone you think will really sell you, focus on that person.

I am thinking of instituting or re-instituting a "tip of the day" to get some quick advice out and keep the blog going.  

First tip of the day:  sometimes we all need to recognize that the suits that fit us, say, last year, are kind of too tight now.  Yes, we gained a little weight.  Sometimes we just need to accept this, and go to another size until we can get back into the old ones.  I've seen some horrible skin tight suits on men and women alike.  It is not attractive when we can see the outline of your body parts.  Not professional and quite distracting.  Do yourself a favor and invest in something slightly larger.  You can always donate the "bigger suits" to a good cause like one of those putting people back in the workforce groups once you get back to fighting weight.