We recently caught up with Heidi who shares how she secured her role at Reed Smith. She elaborates on why she chose a role with them, if she encountered anything tough along the way, what she did to prepare for the interview and some tips for fellow members to follow in her footsteps.
What stood out to you about Reed Smith?
I was drawn to Reed Smith by the friendly and collaborative attitude shared by the lawyers I had met at law fairs and campus events. I liked that the firm specialises in more unusual areas of law such as aviation litigation or intellectual property, as well as offering the more conventional practices of a top tier firm, such as banking and commercial disputes. Reed Smith’s international presence was also appealing to me, presenting opportunities to work abroad.
Was there anything in the application process you found particularly tough? And how did you go about tackling it?
Some of the application questions required a strong knowledge of the firm, its work, its values and how it differentiates itself from other firms. This required thorough research into the firm and it was useful to reach out to people at the firm I had previously met (over LinkedIn or email) for information and advice. I found that people were more than happy to answer my questions.
How did you prepare for your interview/assessment centre?
I would run through mock interviews with friends for practice and prepared a cheat sheet of common interview questions and my answers (my work experience, strengths, weaknesses, examples of challenging situations, why I wanted a career in law). Whilst it is important to not come across as overly rehearsed in an interview, it helped me to organise my thoughts and have a reserve response for the trickier questions.
What would be your top tip to members going through the application process?
Whether a successful or unsuccessful application, whether at Reed Smith or otherwise, remember to ask for feedback. Feedback is so crucial for personal development and for strengthening your interview skills.
What’s been the toughest interview question you faced?
It is quite common to be asked by your interviewer(s) to describe a weakness of yours. My difficulty with this question was identifying a weakness that could be converted into a strength, and remembering to explain what steps I was taking to improve on it.