What Questions Should You Ask At Law Interviews?


In my experience, many lawyers are unsure about the part of an interview where the interviewer gives them an opportunity to ask questions.

In this article, I will explain the importance of asking questions at interview and how to go about it.

The Importance of Asking Good Questions

Being invited to ask questions is a huge opportunity for you.

It allows you to do your own due diligence and gather further information about the role and the employer.

It’s easy to forget the recruitment process is a two-way street. As well as the employer assessing whether you are the right fit for them, you should also be determining whether they are the right fit for you.

Imagine yourself having a handful of offers from this law firm and a few of its competitors. What information would you like to know about this firm that would help you decide between them?

Additionally, when you ask considered questions as part of your due diligence you will most likely demonstrate your knowledge of the employer. This shows the interviewer you are motivated towards this role and employer.

Proving your motivation will be a critical part of your success in the recruitment process so don’t waste this opportunity.

How To Ask Impactful Questions

The starting point when considering which questions to ask is to consider what you genuinely want to learn.

Questions which show you have done your own research about the role and the employer go down well. For example, you might ask something about the employer’s future plans in a particular area if you found mention of it in the legal news recently (and it is of specific interest to you).

Asking a question that clearly shows your motivation and ambition to succeed will also be well received. An effective way to do this is to ask the interviewer about their reasons for working there.

For example:

What are your main reasons for choosing to work at this firm instead of its competitors?”

This sort of question achieves two things.

It shows your motivation to find out why you might choose this firm over others AND the answer to it will give you some valuable due diligence information. If you are being interviewed by more than one competing firm, it might be invaluable in your decision-making.

Candidates often worry about what to ask. They think there are some magic questions that will impress the recruiters. The truth is there aren’t. All you need to do is to spend some time thinking about what you genuinely would like to know.

I advise you have at least four to six questions prepared even though you may only get to ask one or two. This takes into account that some of your questions may get answered during the course of the interview. The last thing you want is to get to the end of the interview and draw a blank when they ask if you have any questions to ask.

An important rule to abide by is this. Don’t ask about things you could easily find out for yourself with a bit of research. This will leave a really poor impression.

Create Your Own Genuine Questions

When you are doing your research and preparing for your interview note down the questions that come up for you.

Think about what is important for you to know to help you make a decision.

The questions that go down best with interviewers are those that are genuine and not merely asked in an attempt to impress them. They show a true interest in learning more about the role and the firm in order to determine if they are the right fit for you.

Want some feedback on your questions?

Feel free to send them over via the Contact Form and I will gladly give you my thoughts on them.

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Matt Oliver

Matt is the founder of Law Career Plus and a former in-house lawyer (Sky Sports, London & Foxtel, Sydney). With over 12 years of experience as a career consultant & executive coach, he supports lawyers with their career development & career transitions. He does this through this website, a regular email newsletter and his one to one lawyer career coaching.

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