Monday, 1 September 2008

Keeping In Contact

What is the best way I wonder to keep in contact with Barristers whom you have met or had mini pupillages with?

It seems slightly erksome to me to email and just say "Hi! Remember me?!?"

Any suggestions?:S


Android said...

See if they're on facebook :)

Oliver Smith said...

Get contact details while you are there. There is little point to these mini pupillages if you do not network while you are on them!

Anonymous said...

I have only stayed in touch with one person, who specifically gave me their details and asked me to keep in touch, offered to look at my CV etc. Perhaps that's where I am going wrong.

Swiss Tony said...

You can get all of their email addys from their websites, so no need to ask when you are there.

I did email all 5 baristers I spent time with following my first mini thanking them for their time and blah blah blah. One of them responding just wishing me luck.

So I don't know if I was a right plonker for doing it or what!

I did meet a charming barrister last week in court who told me I should be a barrister, so I emailed her and we are going out to dinner tonight.

Now who's the plonker!

No, actually, I made that up. She responded and suggested that her chambers are not in Olpas so keep an eye out for them. So that wasn't a wasted effort.

Long and short is, I don't know the right answer but am interested if you find out.


Bar Boy said...

Aside from the obvious immediate follow up note (and preferably not sent using an e-mail address of bigboy@yahoo etc), you want to look for opportunities to remind people of your existence over the months ahead and, also, why you are getting in touch. Xmas is a good opportunity to send wishes (always season's greetings because that covers non Christians) and to try and find some law related thing you can mention. I would look for something you can tie in with experience gained on the MP. If you get on well with a particular barrister, a short 6 monthly update on your studies might be worth a try, along with asking for another MP etc. Sensible use of the WP could allow for quite a sizeable contact base to be built up at not much effort. And bear in mind that just because someone does not look useful to know, does not mean that they dont know someone else etc.

And saying please and thank you can never, ever do any harm.

The 50-Year-Old Pupil said...

This is really difficult to get right.
1. Be courteous and thank people.
2. Barristers are very busy and, TBH, you like as not bring little to the party so this isn't really networking. This will not get you ahead of better qualified people.
3. Avoid being a nuisance.
4. Lunching with chambers heads and judges will not necessarily get you even an interview. I know people who tried this.
5. Public emails on websites usually divert to the clerks who will be very protective.
6. At all costs avoid your approaches coming across as meretricious. That can be your word for today it you have got as far as "M".
7. Time spent on mooting, debating and pro bono will give better returns. It astonished me how few of my contemporaries on the BVC did mooting. Working for solicitors will pretty will guarantee interviews.
8. You need a good reference from somebody on the BVC. Do not neglect this. It need not be your group tutor and advocacy tutors are good prospects.
9. When you start dining you will meet lots of benchers who will give you their emails and offer to read your CV, possibly genuinely impressed by your performance in mooting or debating. Just imagine how the head of pupillage feels when the head of chambers pushes a CV under their nose and suggests that they should consider it.

Lost said...

Hi 50-yr-old-bar-pupil, it is sometimes truly amazing to discover some idiots who want to be barristers!!!! (probably myself being included) mooting is essential, however mooting at my uni is fiercly competitive, and depends on whether your judges are BVC students(which generally mean that they act as if they have had 10 years call, or teachers which are very nice to you normally.

I have a few well known lecturers in my uni who are well known in the bar, so I guess I shall suck up to them, however doing this is quite difficult and I managed getting a mini via cornering a QC which was much better than ask so called "lecturer" for one.

Thanks for the other points!!

Andro - I've already tried this!! Facebook has created a form of stalking that has far surpassed Myspace!!

Legally Ginge - probably best to keep in touch with that person just incase. I only really have two people so far to contact, and neither of them would I contact on a regular basis, I think I might call upon them when christmas comes, under the guise of wishing them "seasons greetings"

Swiss - i dont think there is a right answer!!! Its good to email people! I emailed the barrister that I spent a week with not the QC that gave me work experience, however it is likely that I will see him again sometime soon perhaps.

Barboy - I always use my univeristy email address, rather than ""
Funnily enough I rang the clerks of my chambers the day after I had "drinks" with them and they asked me how I was etc, however they have probably forgot who I am by now, but I did make an effort (though probably in a very pissed way) to get to know all the clerks and the receptionists.