I am often asked about getting a paralegal job or breaking in to the paralegal field. It’s no secret that the economy has made fading a job, be it as a paralegal or as anything else, very difficult, to say the least. These days a resume must stand out or it will just be viewed as one of the many. Credentials are important (where you went to school, GPA, Extra curricular activities, etc.) however, you are one of a million candidates who will have the same type of credentials, if not better than, the ones you bring to the table.
This is where networking becomes your secret weapon. Don’t discard that friend who may be working at Starbucks or a clothing store. They deal with the public on a daily basis and, what do you know…. sometimes the public happens to be an attorney who needs a paralegal for a special project. If you discard that friend you will never know that.
As most of you know I have been working in the compliance world. I have been itching to get into the legal department again. I really miss being in the midst of the legal world. I wasn’t looking for a new position but, as I always advise my friends, you don’t have to be looking for a new job to keep your eyes opened. Sometimes opportunities come your way and the only way you will be ready to take them is if you have your eyes opened and cease the opportunity as if you were actually chasing it.
A few months ago, a friend of mine was speaking with an attorney who was thinking of posting a position for a paralegal with the exact same qualifications I have. My friend immediately mentioned my name and made the introductions. I me with the attorney even before the position was completely available and before anyone else knew about it.
I still don’t have the position. It just recently posted (was advertised) but I am almost certain that I will get it. Had I not developed a good network of friends I would have never heard of this job.
Networking is not something you do when you are looking for a job.
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