Begin to prepare cover letters for mailing on Monday. Plan your week. You have made a direct mail campaign of sending out 25 letters a week with follow-up phone calls. This week you are going to call on the 25 from last week. This week you are sending out 25 new letters.
Make mailing of 25 new letters to targeted list. Make mailings to advertised leads. Call on any ads that have given a phone number and that have indicated that you can call first thing Monday morning. Note: Unless you have been given a phone number in an ad, do not make phone calls on Monday morning. This is the least pleasant part of the week and you will meet with the strongest resistance at this time. Follow-up phone calls, networking phone calls, and cold calls will get the best reception between the hours of 10:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M. Tuesday through Thursday. For Monday mornings and Friday afternoons, the job searcher should plan other fruitful activities. Monday after noon and Friday mornings are border line. Remember, you want to reach your target when they are most likely to receive your call positively.
Write letter of application to local paralegal association or become an associate member of the local bar association. Call one of your fellow graduates to meet for a cup of coffee to help each other out in the job search. Make three follow-up phone calls on Tuesday morning concerning the 25 previously sent letters. You have one good connection from a mailing you made two weeks before. The attorney said you could come by and talk about some potential part-time work. You schedule this appointment with an eye toward getting five names from this attorney who could constitute a group for a networked mailing. You also might want to do some part-time work. Tuesday afternoon you make three more follow-up phone calls to the previous week's mailing,
You have the interview with the attorney who had some part-time work. She wants some short-term help with a trial coming in a month. You agree to help her. She gives five names and allows you to use her name in the cover letter. You go home and make that mailing of five, using her name in the first paragraph of your letter. You make follow- up of phone calls on Wednesday afternoon. No one wants to talk to you today. You are tired and ex cited. You go out with a recently employed paralegal friend who boosts you up and cheers you on. You get some exercise to relieve stress.
In the morning you make your follow-up phone calls for last week's mailing. One person tells you to call in a month. Another person wants to speak with you about a secretary-paralegal position
. Al though you are not sure it sounds appealing, you schedule an interview for the experience. You get a call from one of the letters you sent on Monday from Sunday's paper, and schedule the interview for next week on your calendar. At your Thursday night bar meeting you volunteer to answer the phone and help out attorneys in their pro bono program. You log each attorney's name for future reference.
You sit down with your calendar and Journal of Professional Contacts and fill in the necessary information concerning your week's activities. You collect all the phone numbers you will be calling next week. You fill out your interview analysis sheets, lead sheets, and networking log concerning this week's activities. A youth group friend from church calls you and tells you that he has just met an attorney who might require some help. You thank him and quickly write a networking letter that will be on their desk on Monday so you can call them on Tuesday. You write a thank you note to the two people you have seen this week. You get a job rejection phone call late Friday afternoon. You quickly sit down and craft a letter of thanks and reconsideration and ask them to call you "if things do not work out with the one you have chosen." You are very disappointed, but at 4:30 on Friday afternoon, one of the firms who you wrote to four weeks ago calls you out of the blue and asks if you are still available. You try to sound calm and composed and agree to meet them next week. It seems one of their paralegals has suddenly given notice and will be gone in two weeks. Your letter just happened to be the most recent arrival on the legal administrator's desk.
You sit yourself down on Saturday morning and tell yourself that you are not going to suspend all job search activity just because you are excited. You will continue your 25 letter direct mail campaign. You will keep your appointments and your record keeping and all of your synergistic job hunting until you accept an offer and not before.
The whole point of this process is to carry every connection out to its last potential. If you speak with someone, have you written to them? If you speak with anyone in a position of influence, get some names from them. Many people get names from unsuccessful job interviewing situations. The dialogue might go like this:
"We are truly sorry you were not chosen, but we think you have excellent qualifications."
"Well, thank you, can you think of anyone else who might be interested in someone with my capabilities?"
A Profession to Grow In:
The paralegal profession is growing. The ranks of paralegals who are involved in corporations and government and traditional practices continue to grow. The person who succeeds in this profession understands that the value lied in their ability to continue to build skills and write a record of professionalism wherever they go. This is truly a profession; the paralegals that pioneered this profession should be congratulated for having a clear vision of the status that paralegals could achieve. You can follow the path of professional development. If you see your job as a career and not just a job, you will be well on your way to putting into practice the tools and techniques and strategies recommended in this book.
There seems to be an earnestness and seriousness in the people who want to become paralegals. This earnestness goes a long way toward making them successful. As it is with most things, it is the implementing of what you know works that makes the difference between success and failure. Your desire and commitment, if held strongly, will propel you into the synergistic job search, your subsequent professional paralegal development, and your network building.
When you immerse yourself in the hunt, it is always a good idea to rehearse the basics. Professional athletes and artists know that they must do this. Full immersion into such an occupying adventure occasionally requires perspective. So, the final recommendation of this book is rehearsal. Go back over the chapters of this book. Review the challenges you are facing, make notes and adjustments and then jump back into the fray. It is worth the effort!
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