How to Market Yourself to Stand Out from Other Legal Professionals
When you are a legal professional applying for your dream position, you know that the competition will be fierce. You also know that many of your competitors for the job may well have similar qualifications and resumes to yours. So, what can you do to make yourself stand out from the crowd?
Start With Your Expertise
Many jobs in the legal profession – especially the ones you might consider “dream jobs” – require very specific experience and expertise. And you must be able to convey this expertise in a clear, concise, and professional manner – this is no time to be modest, and it’s no time to be subtle either!
You may even have experience from a position outside of the legal field that relates to the job. If you do, be sure to highlight this experience and clearly demonstrate (if it isn’t immediately obvious) how this experience relates to the job that you are applying for. Be sure to highlight any relevant and transferable skills that you have acquired over the course of your career.
Highlight Experience, Training, and Qualifications
Depending on the position, law firms and other employers are going to want to see that you have a certain level of experience or other qualifications to ensure that you are a good fit for the role. Some roles will require a certain number of years in the field or legal specialty. Other roles might require specific training, certifications, languages and so forth. Industry-specific knowledge can give you a huge advantage over your fellow candidates for some positions. In other cases, the employer might be looking to see that you have an MBA, entrepreneurial skills, or additional technical skills.
Be sure to keep the details on your resume relevant to the job requirements for the position you are applying for. Hiring managers often have stacks of resumes to go through in a short time period, and your best bet is usually a concise (no more than two pages) resume that clearly demonstrates you are a suitable candidate.
A strong resume can get you through to the next stage of the hiring process, which is usually the interview. During the interview, the employer will still naturally want to learn more about your skills and experience, but at this stage, they will also be looking for something a little less tangible – how well you will fit into the organization’s culture.
This can be very subjective. Demonstrating that you are hardworking and diligent is a given, but it’s also important to display a certain likeability. After all, most people spend more waking time with their co-workers than their own family – so it’s important that you like each other.
The interview stage is also a great chance for you to decide if the culture of the company or firm is right for you. And this often comes down to asking great questions! Have some questions prepared to help you determine whether a particular company is a place where you could grow and be happy.
Using Your Network
There is an old adage that says it’s not what you know but who you know. And there is some truth there – to a point. It’s ok to use your network to help you get a job, but this needs to be done with some discretion.
For example, reaching out to your contacts to better understand a specific job or company can certainly help give you an edge. If a close contact can put in a good word for you or get you an interview when a recruiter is unable to, even better.
But be careful of going overboard. For example, having a bunch of random people call a potential employer to say what a great person you are, is more likely to have the opposite effect!
Bottom line, if you can use your network in a way that is organic and appropriate, it can certainly benefit you in some circumstances.
Contact Life After Law Today
Would you like help standing out from the crowd to land your dream job in the legal profession? We are here to help! Contact us today to learn more.