What's hot and what's not?
Unfortunately, this has been a very flat year for associate movement, while
partner movement remains quite healthy. The corporate area is not very active,
but we are hoping that activity will be on the rise with the stimulus package,
becoming apparent towards the end of 2009. This will also have an impact on
real estate projects. In the meantime, bankruptcy and litigation remain the
most active areas.
From our experience, when firms participate in massive layoffs there is
generally an overreaction, and then we see a tremendous need to hire once
the realization that things are going to turn around sinks in, and they find
Dress for success
It may be a cliché, but first impressions are extremely important. We
are told to not judge a book by its cover, but unfortunately most people
don't take the time necessary to look at the contents. That being said, when
going to a client for a meeting or to a prospective employer for an interview,
a clean conservative approach to your presentation is the best way to go.
For both men and woman we recommend a dark suit, either navy or grey, and
staying away from black (unless it is your only dark suit).
Wear a white shirt and a red tie if you are a man. Make sure you are
clean-shaven, your shoes are shined and your nails are trimmed. Keep cologne
to a minimum. Get a haircut.
For women, it is important to keep makeup, jewelry and perfume to a
minimum. A fresh manicure and simple hairstyle are recommended.
You want a prospective employer to focus on you and your thoughts, not
on what you are wearing. Most people realize this, but others just don't
appreciate the importance of it. We have met candidates who have
come to the interview dressed for clubbing or a cocktail party, and that
look just doesn't fly. It is important that whomever you
are meeting gets the impression that you are a serious attorney. If
you want to inject some personal style into your work wardrobe, there's
time enough after you have established your value and skills to your
firm or company.
Moving right along...
Tips about relocation
We've helped many candidates to leave New York and find great jobs in other
cities or countries. We've also enabled many candidates to move to New York
from other places. There are many reasons people choose to or need to
relocate. From our experience, what is key to making a successful transition
is to have, or be able to demonstrate to potential employers, a strong
connection to your new (or target) city, in addition to a commitment to their
firm and culture.
Know why you are moving
For example, a company or firm might be concerned about your level of
commitment if you are moving to a new location simply because your boyfriend
or girlfriend just got a job there. Even though it sounds unfair, moving for
a fiancé or spouse will carry more emotional weight with a potential
employer. A potential employer also might be hesitant to commit to a person
who decides to move to a new city simply because a wonderful vacation or
visit to the place inspires them to spend the rest of their life there.
On the other hand, a strong family connection is taken very seriously as
a reason for a move, as is a commitment to a place where you once attended
school and have strong ties. Employers want to know that you are committed
to your new home, as well as your new firm or company.
Keep everyone in the loop
When planning a move, it is also important to consider others who may be
affected. You need to discuss your options with those in your life who may
be uprooted, or even left behind. We have had several incidents when a
candidate received an incredible job offer, accepted it, and then their
spouse simply refused to move.
Know thyself... and thy resumé.
When interviewing, review your resumé so you are familiar with everything
that is on it. Prepare a brief monologue about yourself. By having this
information fresh in your mind you can avoid any awkward pauses.
With faxes and emails it is so easy to say thank you after an interview - and
you always should. For a novel approach, try a handwritten note. Even
though it doesn't get there right away, it is a great way to put your name in
the interviewer's face again a few days later.