Firms may want to see evidence of your interest in and understanding of current affairs and the industry you are looking to work in. Build up your knowledge and understanding of current affairs to evidence your interest in the wider economy. Relate your knowledge to your prospective employer, its clients and the markets in which they operate. You should also research the challenges the industry is facing and assess proposed solutions.
If there is a particular topic that is consistently discussed on the front pages prior to your interview (for instance, regulation, tax avoidance, political instability, elections, disasters, emerging markets, whether Scotland should become independent, whether Britain should remain in the EU etc.), then try to gain some insight into the topic before the interview. There is every chance the interviewer will bring it up.
In addition, check the front page of the Financial Times on the morning of your interview just in case something major has happened. A topic that comes up fairly often in some way or another is the challenges facing the Legal industry. You may for instance be asked what challenges the firm is facing, or what you would do if you took over the firm today.
There are many other sources you can use to build your awareness, knowledge and understanding of current affairs. BBC Business News (online) provides a concise and straightforward account of current affairs. Helpfully, there are usually links at the bottom of articles to related articles. Reading these can help you to build a more comprehensive understanding of different topics. The Financial Times and the Economist similarly provide an overview of the most relevant topical issues affecting the business and finance world.
Some sources let you subscribe to useful ‘daily digest’ summaries of key news articles, which can really help to keep you abreast of what is going on in the business world. Consider following well-known commentators and publications on Twitter, delving into blogs focusing on financial services, reading client alerts published by firms and searching out YouTube videos focusing on particular topical issues.
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By Jake Schogger - City Career Series