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While law firms are forever engaged in a flurry of hiring activity, this recent economy has seen lawyers from government and in-house counsel flocking to law firms. As always, a great deal of interest has been evident in lateral hires as well. For lawyers seriously considering making a job move, a number of helpful resources are available at the Web sites of leading attorney placement firms on how to market yourself. For example, the attorney placement firm of Bickerton and Gordon offer a number of helpful suggestions at www.bickertongordon.com. The firm suggests asking some friends to participate in a mock interview and have them provide a critique. Moreover, the firm also suggests always going to an interview with the objective of eliciting an offer from the employer, noting that some candidates appear disinterested or even indifferent in the preliminary part of the interviewing process. Bickerton and Gordon also note that while most interviews are conducted on low-key, friendly terms, lawyers should always be prepared to deal with the aggressive interviewer. When facing this type of questioner, never act defensively, the firm advises. If a resume and record of achievement are being attacked, be prepared to explain any problem areas. Ultimately, it may be better to admit a mistake rather than to act defensively. Other attorney placement sites also offer suggestions on getting interviews. Update Legal ( www.updatelegal.com) provides the “Top 10 Tips for Outstanding Resumes” and offers 24 tips on how to conduct yourself before, during and after the interview. The Affiliates ( www.affiliates.com) advises job candidates to prepare for six basic questions. Of course, one of these is the “tell me about yourself question,” which The Affiliates recommends be answered in a two- or three-sentence “sound bite” describing your professional achievements, qualifications and career goals. WHAT NOT TO ASK In addition, this firm suggests knowing what questions not to ask. “For example, don’t inquire about salary, bonuses, vacation time, benefits or your office space. These questions are appropriate only after there is serious interest in hiring you. If you’re asked what salary you want, give a range based on your research, but indicate that you’re more interested in the “opportunity for career growth and development.” Special Counsel ( www.specialcounsel.com) offers candidates a 1,000-word primer on preparing for the interview process, questions to ask the interviewer and the steps to take after the interview. Special Counsel also offers tips on writing the “winning resume” that include following a chronological format listing the most recent position first, or a functional format highlighting skills and achievements if the candidate does not have a stable work history or is making a career change. This site also contains additional career resources. Seckler Legal Consulting ( www.seckler.com) refers to dozens of books, articles and Web sites on topics that include “in-house careers,” “tools for a job search,” “career development,” “career satisfaction” and “career balance inside and outside the law.” This firm produces Seckler’s Legal Digest, an electronic newsletter summarizing career trends in the law. In addition, Todays Legal Staffing ( www.todays.com) offers a guide to preparing a resume as well as 36 key questions any candidate should be prepared to answer. Finally, for pure entertainment value as well as the chance to review additional resources, turn to www.legal-briefs.com, the home page of Legal Briefs. The reader is introduced to this job coaching information with a pleasant array of background music including, appropriately enough, the theme from the 1960s television show “Get Smart.” John T. Duffy is a lawyer, author and law firm marketing consultant based in Providence, R.I. He is the author of the book “A Lawyer’s Guide To Getting Good Press,” and co-author of the Lexis Nexis national reference “Rainmaking: Client Development for the 90s.”

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