Large group of people at an open day

How to make the most out of an Open Day Event

When applying for graduate roles, it is important to apply to firms that will be a good fit for you. One way of getting an insight into a firm and what it would be like to work there is through attending open day events. Attendance at these events will usually reveal much more about the firm than online research. This article provides tips to help you make the most out of the open day events that we hold at Michelmores.

1. Be engaged

During an open day event, attendees hear from a range of speakers about the firm and their role within it. You should bring a note pad and a pen to the event so that you can make a note of:

a) any questions which you cannot ask immediately;

b) names of individuals you hear from throughout the event, particularly those who you would like to follow up with after the event; and

c) things you learn about the firm which will be useful to remember when writing your application.

2. ‘Put yourself out there’

Open day events often finish with a networking session during which attendees get the opportunity to chat to employees of the firm. Whilst it can be daunting to speak to new people, it is important to push yourself outside of your comfort zone and take the initiative to approach members of the firm. Try to avoid the temptation to stay standing with a group of your friends. Instead, split off into pairs and consider approaching:

a) a lawyer working in a practice area that interests you;

b) a member of the graduate recruitment team for any questions you may have about the recruitment process and/or the structure of a training contract/graduate scheme; or

c) a trainee/graduate about their experience of the recruitment process or of the role itself.

3. Prepare questions/conversation starters in advance

It can feel awkward when approaching someone new to start a conversation. To avoid feeling uncomfortable, consider preparing a question for each of the following types of people that you are likely to meet at an open day event:

a) a Partner or Senior Associate;

b) a Trainee/Junior Solicitor; and

c) a member of the graduate recruitment team.

Preparing a question in advance will encourage you to approach a member of the firm by giving you a topic that you can use to start a conversation.

4. Post-event action

Take some form of follow up action after the event. This could be as simple as connecting on LinkedIn with someone at the firm who you spoke with and thanking them for their time. Alternatively, it could be referring to something you learnt about the firm at the open event when writing your application.

Follow our page on LinkedIn or visit our website for updates about upcoming events.