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What to Bring to the Interview

The Packet

Your packet or portfolio accomplishes three goals: it makes you look good, it educates the interviewer about your candidacy, and it helps the interviewer remember who you are. The vast majority of legal interviews happen during a very short time period, with a large number of candidates interviewing for the same position. Faced with such an abundance of applicants, employers often have a difficult time putting together names and faces after a long day of interviews. The materials in your packet will help you make a lasting impression on your interviewers. If you want to look professional during your interviews, you must leave all of your extraneous stuff behind. Items such as large bags, drinks, and cellphones are not distracting and rude.

Preparing these packets can be somewhat time-consuming and costly, but it is important to have one available for each of your interviewers. At a minimum, you should have enough for your top-choice employers (for on-campus interviews), or for the hiring partner and the recruiting coordinator (for callback and lateral interviews). This will ensure that your portfolio is available to everyone on the hiring committee.

If you have a business card, include it in your packet, as well. Judi Perkins, a job coach and a cofounder of Find Your Perfect Job, recommends investing in “bio” business cards. In addition to your name and contact information, these cards should list several salient aspects of your job search (specialty, experience, targeted positions, and so on). Because people are sometimes more likely to retain business cards than packets of information or resumes, a bio card may remind them to contact you about a last-minute job opening or an interview.

Additional topics

Job Descriptions and Careers, Career and Job Opportunities, Career Search, and Career Choices and ProfilesLaw Job InterviewsWhat to Bring to the Interview - The Packet, Resume, Writing Samples, Transcripts, References, What Not To Bring