What's your name and job title? What did you study?
My name is Cameron Hart and I’m a Solicitor. I was admitted in December 2019 and I studied Law at the University of Canterbury.
How did you get to your current job position and for how long have you occupied it?
I now work full time at Lane Neave however, I have worked three separate contracts with the firm prior to this. I first started in 2017 as a Law Intern on a six-week contract then progressed to Law Clerk where I worked part-time through the penultimate year of my degree. In my final summer, I was employed as a Summer Clerk, then after finishing University in June 2019, I started full-time as a Law Clerk.
I managed to secure the internship in 2017 by walking into the firm and offering to work for free. After asking for a copy of my CV and Transcript, I was offered a position which unbeknown to me was advertised at the time. Very quickly after starting, I was recruited by all of the firm’s sports teams (netball, touch rugby, lawn bowls and other codes involved in annual corporate challenges). It was the participation of these sports and other social events, mixed with some workplace ability which secured my role at Lane Neave.
How can students best prepare for interviews?
People want to work with people they get along with, and ultimately, so do you. Take the interview seriously but try to treat it like a general conversation. The interviewers are going to use the time to figure out who you are and what your personality is like, so make sure to be yourself. Of course, come prepared. A good way to be prepared is to know exactly what you have written in your CV and cover letter, and do some research on the firm you are applying for so you can apply your interests or experience to their requirements.
How can students set themselves apart from their peers?
By being themselves. It sounds cliché, but it’s true. Your personality is the best way to set yourself apart from your peers. Use the people skills you have to make connections. They will always remember those who they get along with.
What are the do’s and don’ts in an interview?
Don’t arrive late. You don’t want the first impression to be that you’re unreliable. Don’t talk over the interviewers; allow them to finish their questions. Don’t be arrogant. Most people don’t want to work with people who think they are better than others or “know it all”.
Do ask questions, when appropriate. It is just as much an interview for you to see whether the firm is a good fit for you. Do smile, you won’t miss out on the job for enjoying yourself during the interview.
What is your number one tip for students when interviewing?
Make the interview a conversation, answer questions appropriately and know when to ask questions back. A good interview feels natural, not forced.