Pre-script- The links in this post will take you to some invaluable articles. Please do click on them. I have spent quite some time researching for this piece. Links at point 3 and 15 are specially brilliant. Some of you might like to move straight over to point 11, from where the advanced tips start.
Anyone can make a good CV provided you are ready to work for it. Paths are made by walking, not waiting. Touche.
1.) Learn Great English. Learn to speak English and write English. Learn how the English eat and blow their noses. However just to pin- prick your pride here is Wikipedia’s article on ‘Hin’glish. Don’t make the silly mistakes pointed here.
2.) Intern in every possible break. Intern after college hours, if possible. There are also online internships possible. The online internships offered by the National Judicial Academy, Bhopal and the Volintern program of Nishith Desai Associates are doable.
3.) Research. Write papers. Write professional blogs. If you want to get into a corporate firm write on corporate law. If you IP is your field get cracking on IP topics. Look for call for papers here. (In your comments you may thank me for this link).
4.) In summers do summer courses. In winters do winter courses. With all this workload you will not remain a spring chicken. But still, try doing a spring course. WIPO has summer courses on IP law. ISIL has a course on international law every year. CCS has short courses for the socially inclined too.
5.) Get great CGPAs. Be in the good books of your faculty members. Boot-lick them, if necessary. Or ask them “Sir/Ma’am, can I be your research assistant”. This will sufficiently ego massage them. Scratching their heads, they are bound to ponder, “Have I turned into such a Big-shot, that I need a research assistant”?
6.) Moot. TOM should moot. HARRY should moot. DICK should moot. JOHNY with his mouth full of sugar should moot. ALICES in wonderlands should moot. Even if you are bad at it, moot. The drunk PIPO was brave enough to moot. What keeps you at bay?
7.) Get into the College’s Law Journal board. Everybody can’t be the editor. At least be a member.
8.) Present papers. Go to seminars and make contacts there. You will do well to read this book I am planning to read. It is called ‘How to work a room‘ by Susan Roane.
9.) Make best buddies with the best seniors at your college. When you meet them say a loud ‘Wassup!’. Show some teeth with the lips curved upwards. They might soon employ you.
10.) Do online courses. Attend webinars. Be a sponge. Take in good from everywhere. WIPO, Asian School of Cyber laws etc. have good courses. (Readers, please come up with some more).
11.) Intern once. Intern twice. The third time you go there as an associate. Pick a firm whose practice area you will like to immerse yourself in. Follow this advice. Impress. The elusive PPO will be yours.
12.) Make sure ‘googling’ your name gives great results. We will soon burn our telephone directories. The smarter ones among us will save them as ‘antiques’ for diverser investment options. However, Google will be your buddy for some more time at least. If you are on google you are a stud. If you are not you are a dud. Duh!
13.) Attend events. Attend seminars. Be a people’s person. If you don’t want to get in a pee-pool, get to know people.
I accompanied Mr. Basheer for the NUJS diversity project to Sikkim. He had spent a month there earlier and we were well received. His friends included two grade 11 kids: Suku Singh and Palzor, the most respected monk of the area, the hotel attendant, the school teachers and the bakery owner, among others. Get the point?
The Tipping Point, by Malcolm Gladwell tells us about three kinds of people: The connectors, the mavens and the salesmen. Atleast be one of these.
14.) Develop a good LinkedIn profile. Study what like minded people are doing and shadow them. Do read this article on how law students should use LinkedIn.
15.) Tie shoe laces with the other hand. It improves left brain-right brain coordination. If you are a computer engineer, get to know cyber law. If you are a lawyer learn java and website designing. Shake things around a little bit. Freshness is good for your lungs and your life. See how creative people can get with CV making.
PS- Or maybe, you could enjoy your life. Do what you like to do. Don’t be a fake.
Work in an NGO. Paint.
Write poetry. See how life unfolds naturally.
Naturally. That is how buds flower and cocoons make butterflies.
Note: This article is a slightly edited version of the prize winning ‘most helpful blog post‘ on LegallyIndia written by Tanuj Kalia aka LegalPoet.