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When I completed my vacation schemes I absolutely dreaded the drinks receptions that were put on for the summer students. It seemed that no matter how hard I tried I always got stuck talking to the dullest person and then couldnt get rid of them.
These days Im a seasoned cocktail partygoer and am slowly beginning to master the art of small talk. Seriously, your behaviour at a cocktail party is just as important as your performance during the rest of the vacation scheme. So with the summer vacation scheme season fast approaching I strongly recommend reading this weeks feature written by networking coach Will Kintish on how to work that room (see article).
Also, make sure you do your homework by keeping an eye on Lawyer2B.com and the business pages to keep up-to-date with the latest talking points in the City. For instance, what impact is the credit crunch going to have on mergers and takeovers? Why are so many banks announcing rights issue? Whose suing who?
Whatever you do, however, dont talk shop all night because youll risking turning into that dull person I was referring to at the start of my newsletter. Most of the lawyers Ive come across love talking about sport so it might even be worth keeping an eye on the back pages. But dont fret if you dont understand the off side rule or know how many points a try is worth - I didnt have a clue and still managed to secure a training contract!