After graduating from law school, there are numerous different paths you can take with a law degree. But, regardless of your area of expertise, you’ll need a few key skills relevant to all legal professionals to get ahead in your career.
This article highlights the most important skills to include on your legal CV in 2023 to impress recruiters.
Reading and analysing vast amounts of information and breaking it down into manageable components is at the core of any legal career. When reviewing a case you must gather all the relevant facts and analyse the information you find in order to draft legal documents and give your clients actionable advice.
As such, research is one of the most vital assets you must possess to succeed in the legal field.
Make your legal CV stand out by including research projects you’ve undertaken or providing examples of particularly challenging cases you’ve worked on that required considerable amounts of research. accomplishments in research studies, or even awards you’ve gotten in research.
Because of the integral role research plays in the job of a legal employee, you should also provide additional context to your research skills when you create your cover letter. Your cover letter acts as a complement to your CV and allows you to go into more detail.
Attention to detail
Attention to detail is a quality highly paid lawyers have in common. Dealing with legal issues is complicated. Every minute detail in a clause or contract can have a significant impact if overlooked. Because of this, accuracy is a critical skill you must possess as a lawyer or other professional in the legal industry.
Paying attention to detail in every aspect of your job, from preparing for cases to writing emails, not only ensures that you make no costly mistakes in your line of work. It also shows clients that you’re trustworthy and take your work seriously.
Here are a few other examples of when you might need to use attention to detail in your job:
- When drafting legal documents
- When proofreading and editing legal documents
- When analysing the details of a case
- When meeting with clients and listening to their stories
Critical thinking is crucial for legal employees, because you’ll need to be able to examine the facts of a case objectively and view a problem from multiple perspectives to determine the best course of action.
Critical thinking also enables you to infer context from witnesses and clients, which could make the difference between winning and losing a case. Firms look for employees that can come up with innovative solutions to complex issues.
In your experience section, dedicate space to describing your critical thinking skills and how you successfully used them in the past. If you’re unsure how to write a successful CV with effective bullet points, have a look at some professional CV templates. Drawing inspiration from CV examples written specifically for job seekers in your field will give you a better idea of how to best frame your experience.
As a legal professional, you must be aware of current developments in local, national, and global business, especially the issues that affect law firms and their clients. In your line of work, you’ll be required to understand how your clients’ businesses are run and the broader political and socio-economic issues that affect them.
Commercial awareness is particularly important for corporate lawyers because they’ll be called on to give business-oriented legal advice to clients.
Problem-solving is at the heart of every legal professional's day-to-day duties. As such, problem-solving skills are crucial, and employers will look for evidence of this skill on your CV.
To be an effective problem solver, you must be able to think critically and come up with original solutions. This means that creative thinking and problem-solving often go hand-in-hand. Provide employers with specific examples of times when your out-of-the-box thinking has resulted in positive outcomes for your clients.
Ida Pettersson is a Content Writer who enjoys supporting job seekers as they plan their next career moves. She graduated from New College of Florida with a double major in Philosophy/Chinese Language and Culture. In her spare time, Ida enjoys hiking, reading, and gardening.