For many people, securing their dream job as a solicitor is their main ambition. To achieve this, however, you will first need to get the right training and qualify. Below, you will find seven top tips for securing that all-important training contract.
- Choose a place
Before you choose a firm, you first need to think of where you can see yourself living. It is important that you choose a city where you feel safe and comfortable and then go from there. When thinking about choosing where to live, ask yourself:
- Where would I like to live?
- Is this city right for me?
- Can I see myself living here?
- Do I want to work here?
This limits your options, so you’re not spoilt for choice when choosing a firm or a chamber.
- Create a research method
When you are filling out applications it is vital that you have done the correct research so that you can show off your knowledge and make the best first impression. Find out the firm’s core values and apply these to your application forms so you can show how you represent these. Getting a solicitor training contract is difficult so make sure you do all you can to stand out.
- Pick a handful of small chambers or firms
If you choose a small number, you can spend more time researching your chosen chamber or firm. Although sending out loads of application forms can be tempting and may get you a lot of interviews, it may put you at a disadvantage once you get to the interview stage. The less you apply for, the more time you have to increase your knowledge and shine when it comes to the interview stage.
Once you get an interview and you have done as much research as you possibly can, make sure you are enthusiastic. Show them how much you want this and how hard you have worked for it. If you manage to get any work experience, show up early, take a keen interest and put everything you have into it.
Build a professional network so you can find clients. Firms and chambers look for people that have the skill to network as this is what brings them business. One of the best ways to get the ball rolling is to create a LinkedIn account. Make sure that you attend legal events and get everyone you meet to add you on LinkedIn. Over time, try to maintain these relationships but without being overpowering.
Volunteer work is valued greatly by firms and chambers so it’s a good idea to volunteer as this will show off your personality. It shows that you actively wish to help others. Most chambers and firms are well established within local charities. It could be worthwhile to research which charities the firms and chambers work for and offer support. This shows that you’re eager and willing to help which shows a good side to your work ethic.
- How do you stand out?
What makes you stand out from everyone else? The legal market is competitive so you must decide what makes you stand out and then develop these skills and put them into practice. Every person has something that makes them unique, so choose what is unique about you and put it into practice so you can prove it.