The crazy week of interviews and pre-interview dinners is past and somehow I have managed to survive. How did I survive you ask? Was it nonstop coffee and late-night studying? Was it doing my hair/makeup everyday (which I usually do not do)? Was it dressing business professional nearly everyday of the week despite the hot, muggy temperatures outside? YES. Despite all of this, it was also an incredible experience. Yes, I admit, it was scary being interviewed by partners consecutively but I feel so much more confident now. And who doesn’t like getting treated to steak dinner every night for a week? No complaints there.
The firms will host a “pre-interview dinner” each night before your interview with them the next day. The dinners will be at a nice place or hotel downtown, such as the Omni or the W. They are usually catered with amazing food and also may include a fun event, such as casino games and a short presentation. At these dinners you will get a chance to speak with your interviewer. This is extremely helpful because it will help you feel more relaxed for the interview the next day. If you can make some good conversation with this partner at the dinner, the same good vibes are sure to carry over into your interview the next day. Also, please do not forget about etiquette at these dinners! You may be nervous and forget which forks and knives to use (hint hint….I did that) but that is OKAY! Remember that nobody is perfect, and you are bound to make a few mistakes here and there. Focus on what you can do to make recruiting successful (clean clothes, good sleep, etiquette) and forget about the stuff that is out of your control (redness, sweating, whatever!). Just keep smiling and know that they really do just want to get to know you!
The interviews were my favorite part of the whole week. I am not sure if I am comfortable with one-on-one interactions or if I just had really good conversations but either way the interviews went better than I expected. I am definitely the type of person that gets nervous and shows it, so my first piece of advice is to remain calm. It is not as big of a deal as you will make it out to be in your head. By your last interview of the week, you will be a pro at getting interviewed. In fact, I found myself laughing during a couple of my interviews. The partners are people just as much as we are and they enjoy jokes, too. Bottom line? Just be yourself! Do not undermine the importance of the interview, but also realize that you will be working with these people and they want to make sure your personality fits with the firm.
Things to remember for your interview: unofficial transcripts, follow-up thank you emails, and the right business attire (Yes, ladies that means pantyhose is included!).