It’s a truth universally acknowledged that established law firms who invite students to attend their Open Days, must be in want of punctual, smartly dressed and enthusiastic individuals.
Despite having the pleasure of joining Howes Percival, a recognised regional law practice, during their Open Day earlier this year, I was unfortunately only able to tick two of the three main attributes for the event. My attire and attitude may have been appropriate, but any semblance of organisation I had suffered greatly after arriving late by 3 or 4 minutes.
It probably seems like I’m such a drama queen – trust me, I can feel all of you rolling your eyes at me – overreacting because I missed a total of 240 seconds out of a 4-hour affair. Yet, in the world of law, especially as a beginner, it’s crucial to make the best first impression you can to potential future employers. 240 seconds was the difference between hearing an introduction from a Senior Partner of the firm and missing it altogether.
Overall, my first experience to an Open Day at a law firm didn’t amount to a good start. But the day did get better towards the end considering how the rest of the attendees and I were given a tour around the building. One of the stops we were taken to was the penthouse equivalent for Howes Percival: a restricted top floor. It was secured by a locked door and a passcode. This was apparently the location of where the most confidential, secret cases of the firm was placed and worked on for government and business clients.
I managed to peep through a tiny glass segment of the door and witnessed a long, narrow corridor with numerous doors on either side. While it was only a glimpse, I felt like a female version of James Bond, (minus the perks and the skills.) So with the day ending at a high, it most definitely made up for my disastrous beginning.