" I liked that it was
a two-way street"
On the application process:
James, trainee, Law graduate
from Cambridge University
How was the application
process for you?
I liked the simplicity of it - a cover
letter and a CV with no hidden tricks.
The beauty of the cover letter is that
it gives you the chance to write what
you want to write rather than answer
someone else's set question. I didn't
see the point in repeating what I had
in my CV; I covered things that
How was your interview?
Nerves are normal, I think, but it was
actually quite a pleasant experience.
I was interviewed by a couple of
people who wanted to get to know me,
understand what drives me and what
I'm interested in. I definitely got the
impression that they wanted me to do
well, and I liked that it was a two-way
street. It also felt like I was encouraged
to interview them in a way, to see if the
firm was right for me. It's in everyone's
interests to get that right.
The second part of the interview,
where we discussed a newspaper
article I'd been given, is obviously
designed to assess how you respond
under a bit of pressure, as they prod,
poke and try to pick holes in what
you are saying. At one stage I had
to concede I hadn't made the
Were you concerned at
Not really. You're talking to two very
bright people who want to test how
you'll react outside your comfort zone.
I think that although they are looking
for you to form an opinion, you
should also be able to respect that
there are other points of view on
what isn't a clear-cut issue. My advice
for applicants is to remember that
the interview isn't meant to be
easy, but as long as you don't
panic, you will be fine.