Wednesday’s TPS Report: Stripey Shirt Dress

Our daily TPS reports suggest one piece of work-appropriate attire in a range of prices.

Stripey Shirt DressI actually had a few Karen Millen pieces bookmarked for Mon./Tues. suggestions, but they’ve all gone on sale! (Never a bad thing, even if it screws up my editorial plan.) This black and white shirt dress is a fun take on all of the stark stripes we’re seeing this season, and I love the high neckline, high armholes, and ladylike hem. Love that obi belt, too. It was $299, but is now marked to $140 (sizes 8-12 are the only ones left); there’s also a promotion that allows you to save 30% on sale items if you buy more than one. Stripey Shirt Dress

Seen a great piece you’d like to recommend? Please e-mail [email protected]

(Psst: I also really like this “soft posh jacket,” but it’s now only in size 12.)



  1. I have a manager who refers to me as ‘young lady’. He has some issues with social cues and gets quite aggressive when confronted so a ‘why would you chose to call me that?’ will likely go over his head. I only have a month left so I’m not sure if this is a hill I want to die on but it makes me crazy. Advice?

    • Can you just start calling him “dear sir” in a mockingly sweet tone whenever he does this? He might not get the hint, but you might feel better?

      • Me feeling better is the goal so I might try it. I don’t like to patronized by someone who works in IT but can’t touch type.

      • I’d go with something equally diminutive. Like “Tiger,” but in a “go get ’em, Tiger!” Little League sort of way.

      • Or, given your location, something like “old sport” or “old bean”.

        • Haha! Just thinking about this makes me feel better. I’ve been aggressively cheerful with him, “hello, how are you?” “Great, I’ll get right on that!” which makes me feel a bit better because it makes his moods starker in contrast.

          I don’t get how one man’s moods can rule an organization (literally, he was on a war path a few weeks back and 6 people came in to warn us!)

          • I had a senior partner who used to always refer to me as “Miss first name” I used to then just to make myself feel better refer to him back as “Mr. Albert” – not quite the same but it totally bugges me.

    • If you are going to go with the “joking” route – I might go with something sort of that doesn’t direct at him – both to avoid escalation but still make it clear that you’re a little annoyed – like “I don’t know which is more hilarious, the ‘young’ part or that you think I’m a ‘lady.'” Normally I don’t recommend joking around with this stuff, since it can just encourage them or be perceived as flirting, but since he sounds like a bit of an aggressive jerk and you don’t really have time to escalate over his head if he overreacts to the direct approach, trying to befriend him (or at least show that you have a little bark AND bite) might get some traction.

    • I had a boss-type who always referred to me as a diminutive of my name (in a foreign language), which felt really condescending. And this was usually accomplished by some sort of minor, thinly-veiled insult. So I always addressed him as Mr. Smith in hopes that he would respond to me upping the ante on formality. Limited success, but served as a cue for me to always take the high road and make sure I was not the one accused of impropriety.

    • DC Wonkette :

      I have zero tolerance for that crap, so I would start calling him an old man. But that may not be the most helpful solution :-). Sadly, he’s not going to understand enough to change his ways, IMHO.

    • Anonymous :

      Count the days until you leave this place and go on with your life. This fight isn’t worth it.

  2. Yay! I love this dress, as soon as I loose 8 pounds I am getting it!

    I just walked in and Dad is already here wondering why I’m late. Because I WALKED in, silly boy! FOOEY on him for chideing me for being late when it is HIS FITBIT that made me late! FOOEY!

    He’s in with Frank and he does NOT looke happy!

    I will report later. I want SUSCHI for lunch and the MAnageing partner is payeing!!!!! YAY!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Anonymous :

    In my ever continuing idiocy, I booked a weekly bootcamp that will meet the day that I am meant to run a mud run in the evening evening (next week). The bootcamp is at 9am (for one hour) and the mud run is at 5pm — I am guessing I ought to just not go that day, rather than risk being totally exhausted for the mudrun?

    I’m not running for competition, more to have a good time with friends. The run is only 5K, and it’s annoying to me that I’ll have to miss one of the classes I’ve paid for so part of me is considering going. To any of you who have more experience in races/obstacle courses – is going to bootcamp several hours before one just plain stupid? Or could I probably pull it off. I’m in reasonable shape and work out 5-6x week (spinning, dance classes, weight lifting etc).

    • Is it the first class that is on the mud run day? If not, why not see how you feel after the earlier classes and then decide? This would have been no problem for me when I was used to boot camp, but I had been going 3 days a week for 6 months or so before I got to that point. You might find yourself pretty tired just because you’re using different muscles. Then again, maybe not. :) Another option would be to see if you could reschedule the class to another week so you don’t miss out on it.

      • Anonymous :

        No the first class is this week – but the literature says the first day will be devoted to taking baseline measurements and going through/showing us some of the exercises we will be doing through the 8 weeks. So I’m not sure if it’ll be a fair comparison.

        I suppose I could just ask the instructor what he thinks, though, that’s a good idea!

    • Sounds like you’d be fine. A 5k isn’t too long, even though it’s an obstacle course, and if you don’t care about time, it sounds like you’re in sufficiently good shape to slog through it. Anyway soreness generally doesn’t set in until a day or so later, so you might be feeling it later on, but I’d guess you’d be okay for the run.

    • Anon in NYC :

      I think you’ll be fine to do both in one day, especially since you work out as much as you do. I’m always pretty tired after a bootcamp classes, but not so tired that I couldn’t do a fun run with my friends given time to rest in between. Just make sure that you drink a lot of water and eat in between the events. If you’re really concerned about it, you can call the bootcamp place and ask them how strenuous the first class is and/or see if you can start the bootcamp program on a different day. Given your description of the literature, my perception is that the first day will be pretty light – measurements and probably a lot of emphasis on form (and likely a slower pace).

  4. I love the “soft posh blazer” — so sad that it’s only available in not-my-size. Totally going to look for a soft pink blazer now…

    • How soft pink and how cheap? Reiss has a beautiful blazer in salmon this season, but its not soft pink really – more in between a bold pink and a soft pink. Anthropoligie has a tonal knit blazer that sort of reads as a pink tweed almost (?).

      For something so light pink its almost nude – I like this ASOS option

      • Ahh you just reminded me how much I love Reiss. Everything is so pretty and so expensive

      • Its a bit more fitted, but F21 has this one.

        • Ooh, that’s actually really cute! I might have to pop into F21 after work to check this out in person. Thanks!

      • Also, if you like seersucker, this one might work.

  5. temp health insurance? :

    Ooh, I love this dress.

    Query: I’m changing jobs this summer and have a three-week vacation booked for the time between Job 1 ending and Job 2 beginning. I’d like to sign up for some kind of temporary health insurance, but I’d appreciate insights from the hive–there are so many options that it’s a bit hard to choose.

    If it helps, I’m in PA (though will be traveling out of the country during that three-week period), 26, unmarried, and very healthy.

    • Your current job may offer COBRA coverage where you can keep your current insurance for the 3-week gap:

    • Diana Barry :

      I believe you can sign up for COBRA retroactively – so if you were to need health care during the 3 weeks, you could then sign up for COBRA under your old insurance.

      • I believe the window is 45-60 days (I can’t remember which, so please double check.) If you have something that could be classified as a pre-exisiting condition, please do not go this route as you will be fighting with insurance company number two forever. Also, depending on when you’re starting/coverage is effective you may have paid at your current job for say all of June already.

    • You can get travel health insurance for not very much money if you’re concerned about what might happen if you get sick on vacation. But where are you going? Many countries have very inexpensive health care … Alternatively, could you maybe get your current employer to agree to extend your insurance a month? Or if your end date is mid-month, you may be covered till the end of the month anyway (check with your plan).

      • Yes, this. I got sick in Costa Rica and was directed to a clinic by my hotel. I was absolutely stunned when I tried to pay the receptionist that my visit and medication were FREE. I left a donation equal to my US co-pay and they thought I was crazy.

        • Grammar fail. Need coffee.

        • On the other hand you absolutely shouldn’t count on this… many jurisdictions with universal health care for residents will bill you or your insurance at home for any medical care you receive in their jurisdiction. For example, new residents often have a 3-month waiting period for health care eligibility.

          • Also, while the local health care might be great for something discrete and short-term, you have to consider the — remote — possibility of something more catastrophic or long-term. If you walk in front of a bus and have serious injuries, e.g., you’ll need ongoing care after you get home, so you’ll want continuing coverage.

            COBRA probably is the way to go.

            And have a great vacation.

          • Yeah, Canada totally bills anyone who’s not a resident/citizen – Cuba is obviously more generous.

            When I was moving between provinces I would occassionally receive a bill from one province to me if I received any treatment before my new health card arrived. It only happened once or twice, and I just called my province’s health insurance, and they dealt with it, but it was always weird to see that provinces actually bill each other for services that their residents receive in another province.

    • SAlit-a-gator :

      I’ve been in your position and bought temporary health insurance from They have affordable plans (with high deductibles) and more expensive plans (with low deductibles) from insurnace companies you’ve actually heard of (Humana, Blue Cross, etc). My advice is to get a high deductible plan if you’re healthy and just need something to hold you over for 2 months. Good luck.

    • Blazer / jacket length :

      I agree with the ability to elect COBRA retroactively.

      If you are out of the country and something catastrophic happens, you may need medical evacuationboth in-country and back to the US, which I understand to be freakishly expensive. If you can get a temporary policy for that, it might be money well spent. I used to have it as an employee benefit and am not sure what my current employer does, but I’d look into it before my next international trip.

    • Our org offers HTH insurance – they have a good track record and good customer service + you get a card/don’t have to pay up front abroad.

    • Depending on where you are going out of the country, isn’t there universal health care in certain countries that also applies to tourists?

    • I recently encountered this on a job change, and this is what I found out: depending on the timing between Job1 and Job2, the benefits for Job1 are still active through the end of the month. So say you terminate employment on July 10, you are still covered on Job1’s insurance until July 31.

      • This will vary from employer to employer – some terminate coverage on the date employment ends. For COBRA, the employer has 30 days to notify the plan administrator that your coverage ended; the plan admin has 14 days to send you the COBRA election materials; you have 60 days to elect and another 45 days to make the first payment, but during that time, if you haven’t elected/paid, you technically don’t have coverage and won’t have proof of coverage, so you’d potentially have to pay up front, get itemized bills, elect and pay for COBRA, and then submit the claims for reimbursement – all totally do-able, and legal, but wouldn’t provide peace of mind for catastrophes while in another country.

  6. I’m going to a state bar association social event tonight. Do any of you have ideas on what the dress code will be?

    • If it’s directly after work (6-7 PM start time), I’d expect people to either in business formal (suits) or business casual, probably depending on the formality of the event (e.g., suits for big-deal awards ceremonies, business casual for just a meet-and-greet).

      • SAlit-a-gator :

        Concur with roses above – people will likely come straight from work so it will be a mix of business casual and business formal.

    • Ms. Basil E. Frankweiler :

      If the event is right after work, attendees will likely be in work attire. If the event is any other time, I say business casual.

    • It is right after work and looks kind of fancy, so I bet it’ll be business formal based on what you all said. I will wear a suit. Thank you all!

  7. Blazer / jacket length :

    How long do you wear your blazers and suit jackets?

    When I started working, the jacket bottoms were so long I was sitting on them (see prior threads on short skirt / long jackets). I have since moved to to suit jackets that fall several inches below my waist (so high hip? definitely nowhere near cr0tch- or top-of-pants area).

    Lately though, some jackets seem to be inching longer. Just embrace? Or hold fast to my high-hip jackets?

    The Memorial Day post on Theory has made me yearn for a new suit / jacket (I break everything up and rarely wear as a suit), but I feel like I’m having a philosophical moment where I’m re-evaluating everything before taking the plunge.

    FWIW, I am shaped like a green bean, so a long jacket, even if fitted, seems to emphasize the bean-ness. I like to think that a shorter darted jacket creates at least the illusion of curves (or at least volume) and cuts the bean-nes in half visually. And I really value the opinion of others, especially when they aren’t on commission :)

    • Woods-comma-Elle :

      I have also noticed the longer jacket trend and being short, it drives me crazy. I bought a jacket recently that I actually had to take up (though that wasn’t a huge drama) because long jackets make me look dumpy and even shorter.

      So really, I think it’s a question of ‘wear what suits you, not the trend’ in this case.

      • Blazer / jacket length :

        Makes sense — the last thing I want is to elongate my middle. Look — here comes a torso!

    • Ugh, I have been unhappy with the lengthening jacket trend, too. I’m not sure who it actually suits. I’m tall and find that longer jackets make me look mannish, especially because they tend to be straight up and down and less waist-defining than shorter jackets.

    • Gail the Goldfish :

      I have noticed it and am also unhappy about it. I mentioned yesterday that I recently ordered a J Crew suit jacket in petite to deal with this. This may not be a solution depending on sleeve length, but it happened to work perfectly for the particular jacket I wanted.

  8. Love this dress!

    Heading out to DC this evening. Tomorrow my friend has to work so she’s dropping me off at Pentagon City mall to stay out of the storms for awhile, then I’ll make my way elsewhere from there. This is the first time I’ll have time to spend wandering around Nordie’s by myself. Any recommendations?

    • You’ll be in my neighborhood! Damnit that I have plans or I’d buy you a drink!!

      The nordstrom in PC is fantastic. The makeup counter people are actually really good (not overbearing) if you’re looking for fun new makeup. There is also an expanded Sephora up a few floors if you’d rather go explore there. I will say I haven’t had the best luck at that Nordie’s with bra fitting, but I’ve always gone on the weekends during really busy times.

      If you’re hungry go outside of the mall and head to La Creperie (in Pentagon Row). Delicious and some of the best coffee. There’s also an outdoors store that’s pretty good that way too and when in doubt, a Red Door spa, if you’d want to get your nails done.

    • I have class tomorrow but would have loved to meet you. There’s also a Rack right across the street.

      • Bonnie and L, that’s so sweet. I didn’t want to try to arrange a full-blown meetup but would have loved to meet both of you. I’m heading into the city by Metro to meet some friends for drinks when they get off work. I’m really excited about this trip. I need to get away. It’ll be nice to have a day by myself to do whatever and I’m completely comfortable with taking Metro everywhere.

    • Watch out for the twelve year olds! Seriously, we’re right in the thick of when ALL THE MIDDLE SCHOOLS have their class trips to DC. The chaperones love to dump them at Pentagon City Mall for a few hours to let them run wild while the adults sit down in the food court and chat. I don’t think they go to Nordie’s, though, so you should be safe. :)

      • +1. It’s a great mall (and second the suggestion to hit up the Rack across the street), but the

      • Also in Academia :

        I was one of those kids oh so many years ago. But we were always too intimidated to go into Nordstrom’s. Actually, I only got over that one a few years ago.

      • Really? My middle schooler is in the middle of finals right now!

      • +2, the tourists. Agreed on new Sephora – so.much.bigger. Nordstrom should be quiet (of course, I like to eat in the cafe).

    • I like the staff at Nordie’s PC, but it isn’t very big. My must-go places at PC are Club Monaco, BCBG, Cole Haan, and Kate Spade. And yes, watch out for the gaggles of students in matching T-shirts.

      • Oh yeah, Kate Spade will be a go-to for sure. I’ll be wandering the mall. I received a white cardigan in the mail today that is too see-through to be of use so I’m taking it with me to return and try to get something that will work.

    • DC Wonkette :

      Also, there is a DSW in the Pentagon Row area (go out the metro level through the parking garage). I love Denim Bar in Pentagon Row (on the street, to the right). There’s a manicure place on the top level that’s not bad if you need a break. I think Ann Taylor just re-opened as well (+1 on the new Sephora)…

      • We just got a DSW here so that probably wouldn’t be a must-go for me.

        BTW, if anybody wants to have coffee or whatever, email me at nola r e t t e @ gmail dot com (obviously without the spaces).

  9. Hi everyone – just wondering what types of pictures/diplomas/art that you have hanging on your wall in your office? I recently switched jobs and so right now my walls are completely blank. I’m also a recent newlywed and would love to put one or two wedding pictures on one wall, and then my diplomas on the other one. Would like to hear what all you ladies have hanging in your office! :)

    • In my opinion, wedding or other personal pictures are more appropriate for your desk, or on any shelves you might have in your office. Stick with something less personal for your walls. I have my diplomas on one wall and the other two have framed prints that I like (Georgia O’Keefe florals, to brighten up the space).

    • Blazer / jacket length :

      I have diplomas and 1 professional award on the walls.

      Husband and children are in frames on top of a credenza where I can see them (not on walls — frame-size disparity and frame materials would rule that out visually and I’m of the family-for-me, credentials-for-the-world persuasion).

    • Famouscait :

      On the wall:
      large framed photo of Tulum, Mexico (it is adjacent the door, so more for my view than anyone walking by)
      A large, brightly colored fabric hanging. I made this from fabric I bought on eBay. It’s a cheap way to fill up a lot of wall space. You just build a simple wooden frame and staple-gun the fabric edges.

      On my desk/credenza:
      Photo of my dog
      Electronic picture frame with personal pics of family, travel, etc.

    • I have diplomas and a piece of art on my walls. Personal pictures in frames on tables/bookcase as well as some book-ends/mementos. Only one of those is us in wedding attire. I’d look around at different offices to see what the norm is where you work.

    • Agreeing with others that wedding/personal pics should be smaller and not hanging as wall decor. Mine (5×7 or smaller) are on a small ledge next to my desk – visible from my guest chairs but not emphasized. On the walls, I have my diplomas & bar certificate, plus one large graphic print for personality.

    • I have 2 diplomas and a painting painted by my husband’s grandma on my walls. My family pictures (5*7, one of the family, one of just my boys) are on a table behind my desk. I have a digital picture frame on my desk, but I usually forget to turn it on. I have no open shelving in my current office and I don’t like it.

    • I have my diplomas, a framed poster from a show my sister (singer) had, a series of 5 small photos from my favorite travel photographer, and two small map prints of cities I love. Pretty lamp on desk with a framed 8 x 11 photograph of a plant, and two 4×6 photos framed by my phone (me with best friend, me with fiance). One funky horn frame with 4×6 engagement photo on the bookshelf, but chosen carefully (not kissing, not terribly intimate), and not “in your face” placement. I also have a plans and some decorative books on a shelf. …now that I’ve typed it all out it sounds like a lot :). Definitely a know your office situation.

    • In addition to my diplomas and certifications, I have artwork done by a dear (now deceased) friend, photos of my college, and framed art from my kids.

  10. Paging TCFKAG :

    I was scrolling through your archives and saw your post on heel clips for the grass; you are a lifesaver!! I couldn’t figure out how to comment on your blog, but now I can order the shoes I’ve been dying to wear for my wedding!!

  11. FYI, the 30% off promotion works for just one item, and you can use the code KMWLCM15 for an additional 15% off, which brings the dress to under $100 including shipping. It’s on its way to me now… :-)

  12. Work question..

    I have been working for less than a year and am in consulting. I have received generally high praises from my bosses and have gotten very good reviews, however I am noticing a pattern in my work which makes me very nervous.

    I have noticed that I have made silly mistakes on somewhat important documents/analyses about every other month since I began work. One of these came up today and obviously it has made me very anxious. These are mistakes that I would classify as lack of attention to detail, perhaps lack of double checking work. Do you all have a system in place that you use to check yourselves? Do you rely on a trusted colleague to review your work? How do you assure that all of your items are really “client ready”? Do I just need to commit myself to more carefully checking everything I do?

    • Do you all have a system in place that you use to check yourselves? – YES, I reread my work at least 3 times, sometimes I print it out and make handwritten corrections. I may read it out loud to myself when the office is empty.

      Do you rely on a trusted colleague to review your work? – YES, I am my trusted colleague. I may have an immediate supervisor review it. Depending on how high level the document is, I’ll go even higher for a review.

      How do you assure that all of your items are really “client ready”? – I review the document many times and have maybe 1 or 2 others take a quick look.

      Do I just need to commit myself to more carefully checking everything I do? – YES, YOU DO.

      You’ve only been working for less than a year. You’ll learn how to check yourself eventually. Work smarter and chill out.

    • Maybe you do this already, but I find it helps immensely to print out my document and review a hard copy as opposed to just on the screen.

      • Miss Magoo :

        This. Plus I’ve found I have better attention to those kinds of details at certain times of the day, like later in the day when I’m too tired to write substantively. So I set aside a stack of printouts to proof later in the day.

        • +1. There’s also value to setting aside the document as you can get used to your own errors/typos and they become invisible. I often print out something at the end of the day and leave it on my chair to review first thing in the morning when my eyes are fresh.

          I echo what everyone else said — reread, get help (for me it’s my secretary), print out, and yes you probably could stand to work on this area.

      • I also find it very helpful to print things out in a weird font, something that I would never ordinarily use in a document. Your eye might skip over typos written in your usual font (Times, Arial, etc.), but if you switch to something less pleasant to your eye, like Courier or (!) Comic Sans, you might be more likely to catch them.

    • I have definitely had problems with this in the past. My solutions have been: (1) whenever I think something is ready, even really, really 110% sure it’s ready, I do one more read-through, including cite-checking one more time and re-checking that any data or calulcations are accurate; (2) I read-through after *any* changes have been made; (3) I have at least one other person read through it; (4) if it’s a document of fewer than 15 pages, I read it backward (not each word backward, but each sentence) because then it’s much less likely that I’ll skim over a misspelled word; (5) when I do a final, final read-through, I literally read closely, with my face closer to the document than normal, which makes me focus on each sentence, meaning I’m less likely to skim over missing words; and (6) I always try to leave at least an hour between finishing/making a last change and doing the final read. For me it was just a matter of slowing down and focusing on getting right instead of just getting it done fast.

  13. Relationship TJ – do any of you have SOs who game a lot? Mine has started to spend a lot of his time doing this. I don’t really mind–it’s not like I don’t love wasting time on the internet! But it really takes up a lot of time. I’ll ask him when we might be able to go out or do something together and he’ll say “a couple of minutes,” which sometimes turns out to be more like 20 or 30. Even when I ask him for a specific time, he sometimes blows right through that–so 20 minutes becomes 2 hours. It drives me crazy. Any thoughts?

    • This is a tough one, we’re okay at boundaries (ie. he kills Nazis while I finish up my work) but I can understand why you’d be annoyed if it’s expanding outside reasonable limits or otherwise interfering with your day. Is it possible to have a game night? Then he knows he can play without you getting upset and you know that you aren’t going to lose your Saturdays to WoW?

    • Yes times 1000. My live-in boyfriend could easily waste at least half the day gaming. The difference between his gaming and my internet browsing is that he can’t just turn the game off at anytime since it’s an open multiplayer game. What’s worked for me is to not wait until he’s ready to quit playing. I generally get myself mostly ready and then let him know that I’ll be ready to leave in about 15 minutes. That gives him enough time to hide his gear/get his body somewhere safe and get ready himself. That might work for you.

    • We have set up time frames for it, so for example he might play from 6-8 while I make dinner and catch up on emails, and he knows that he has to be done by 8 so he manages the time well in-game (I guess how easy this is depends on what game it is). He also sometimes gets up early on Sundays and plays while I sleep in.

      If you’ve already set up times but he can’t stick to them, maybe you should let him know that when he plays longer than he promised it annoys you (maybe he thinks you’re more flexible on it than you actually are).

    • I used to! But I just couldn’t take it any more. He kept saying it’s just a hobby, and then I realized that-exactly- if you played golf obsessively after work every day I’d hate that too.

    • Anonymous :

      I don’t date men who game because of this. I think it takes up more time than any other typical man “hobbies” that I know of and there isn’t really any benefit in my mind (using your brain, form of exercise, etc…). I would put a time limit on it like “I’m leaving for the store in 10 minutes you can come or not come”.

    • My husband games. I don’t have a problem with it generally because it’s his form of entertainment/ relaxation, and he almost never watches TV or movies. But in the past, we’ve had problems like you describe. One thing that has really helped has been convincing him to play either a short multiplayer game or a game that has a pause button when we’re going to be going out or if he has responsibilities. That’s almost always, but he’s found some games, including multiplayer games, that he likes.

    • Diana Barry :

      Yes, my husband does. He has the same problem with “just a minute” becoming 20 minutes, and it is also a problem for him with email/work. I have become a micromanager – I remind him that we are leaving at X time (a 1/2 hr before) then I remind him 5 minutes before, then I tell him “we are leaving NOW”. He doesn’t mind it at all now; he knows he’d forget his head if it weren’t attached. ;)

  14. Oh dear. I just remembered why I don’t ever buy or wear pencil skirts. It’s either the loose gap in the waist area or the snug fit in the hips.

    • Buy it to fit your hips, and get a tailor to fix the waist. Not very expensive.

  15. My first threadjack…sorry for the interruption. I’m a 3rd year associate at a small law firm (7 attorneys including me), and have been seriously looking for a new position for some time. I’ve had one interview with a much larger (around 100 attorney), regional (3 states) firm, and got called yesterday for a 2nd interview. My question is, in your collective experience, how does a 2nd interview differ from the first? Any suggestions on what I can expect? I’m really excited about this job, and hopeful that this is a very good sign. Thanks in advance!

    • What was your first interview like? In my experience (I did a few interviews to lateral to midsized firms) the first interview was more of a “screening” interview – shorter, meet with one or two people at most, more “social” with only sort of general questions about my work experience, more chit chat, etc. Basically, an interview to make sure you seem normal and pleasant and worth a second interview. If this is the case, then the second interview tends to be more substantive (more pointed questions about your work, with follow-up discussion) and involves meeting more people, including a mix of partners and associates. But if your first interview was longer/ more substantive, then this might not be the case.

      • River City :

        Thanks for your reply. The first interview was with 3 partners and a senior associate from the practice group, and included the group chair. It was about an hour, and, while there was some “social” component, it was pretty focused on my experiences. They hadn’t asked for a writing sample prior to the interview, but the group chair asked for that as the interview was wrapping up. I guess I should expect more in-depth questions about the responses I gave during the first round. Thanks again for the information!

        • It’s possible that this will be the “fit” interview, then. If you met with the most senior people first, they might now have you interview with people closer to your level, to see if they like you and feel like they’d like working with you.

          If you haven’t already, you might consider asking your contact at the firm for the names of the people you’ll be interviewing with. This will give you a feel for what the interview will be like (e.g., if they’re all junior and mid-level associates, you know they’ll be looking for personality fit), and will give you a chance to do your homework by at least looking up their bios on the firm web site.

        • No, most likely it won’t be more in depth questions about the answers you already gave. It will probably just be with other people who haven’t met you already. Just more of the same, most likely.

          • River City :

            Thanks TBK and Gus. My HR contact gave me the names for the first interview, so waiting for the same for this round. I do know there will be one partner, head of recruiting, but no word on the others. I’m not feeling as anxious over this one as I was before the first…at least not yet! (But did I mention I really want this job?) Thank you all for your input!

  16. You asked yesterday about Seattleite. Sorry I was MIA yesterday.

    Seattleite is doing well. She has finished her treatment (YEA!!) and is on the road to recovery. I think she still gets tired pretty easily, but is gaining more strength with each passing day. As anyone who has been around here for awhile knows, she’s a strong woman with a great sense of humor—-both traits have served her well (and continue to do so) throughout her treatment and recovery.


  17. I’m in need of career advice. I’m a mid-level litigation associate in biglaw and have quickly realized post-maternity leave that biglaw and motherhood are REALLY difficult to combine. Where do I go to start trying to figure out what I can do besides work in a law firm?

    • First: explore flexing or a reduced schedule at your firm. Mine has it and it’s often a bespoke arrangement, so you might as well pursue it short-term, even as you explore other options. It’s worth a try and buys you some time.

      It probably matters where you live (in DC, a lot of Biglaw folks left to go to the government after a few years for predictability; not just new mothers, but it was appealing for that reason (although litigation may always be tricky)).

      If not DC (and even if you are), you’ve probably noticed an exodus of female attorneys since you started. Call them up. Have coffee. They all went somewhere (even if that was to stay home for a few years).

      If you use day care, start talking to other moms. Some may be onto something that could work for you.

      Finally — who are your clients? Maybe your firm is good at placing people there? Maybe your firm is good at placing people somewhere locally? Also to think about: some judges hire experienced attys as law clerks and that might work, too.

      Good luck!

    • I second V’s advice, but I’d also add that you shouldn’t necessarily rule out working for a firm altogether if you like other aspects of the work but just not the demands. Biglaw is not representative of all law firms – there are many smaller and mid-sized firms that are not as demanding.

      • That’s actually another question I have. What kind of hours does one put in in smaller and mid-sized firms? But since I do not have the personality of a rainmaker, I doubt even a smaller/mid-sized firm has much longevity for me.

        • Litigation can be crazy at any firm. I did regulatory work at a boutique and when we had a proceeding, it was all hands on deck. I found that some people gravitated to appellate work because of clerkships and others liked that there are timelines and based on that you could have expectations for your schedule. A few female multi-child lawyers were PT at Biglaw as appellate brief-writers. What do you litigate?

          Your firm is probably under some pressure to keep female people from leaving just b/c of parenthood and would probably try PT with you (which will let you figure things out). PT is harder to find in the market or to negotiate to if a firm really needs FT availability. It can be, but trying it where you are will give you a better idea of how to do it when you present it to a new employer (and these arrangements are largely initiated / tailored by the person asking for it, so it helps to know what you can commit to and what will work for you long term — e.g., 4 day schedule or leave-at-4-every-day schedule or 20 hours a week schedule — you get the idea).

          FWIW, I am FT and a partner and work remotely quite often. I started in litigation in a regulatory area and now do transactional work in that area.

          • I tried PT for a couple of months after maternity leave, but found I wasn’t getting enough work. I do patent lit. I’d love to get into transactional work and have a little experience there, although I see it being less predictable than lit. How did you make the transition?

          • It was gradual and over time, plus I made some lateral / geographic moves, which changed the client and work mix. I don’t work in IP though.

            No harm in talking to people — other people have been there and done that and are usually happy to share what they know. More information is always good, even if you feel like you’re treading water and even if you just tough it out for a while to see if you feel the same way, say, 6 months from now.

            Good luck!

    • Corporate Cowgirl :

      I just wanted to add that in addition to the considerations others mentioned, it DOES get easier. It took me about 9- maybe 12 months post leave to feel engaged in my work again, and not missing the baby so much. In fact after a year, I was really glad I had stayed with my company and my career. Maybe, for now, you just need to give it more time.

  18. Tech issue :

    I am an infrequent commenter, but for some reason I have been “subscribed” to threads a couple of times in the past week, without commenting or putting in my email address. Has this happened to anyone else? I wind up with lots of emails in my inbox.

    • maybe someone else typoed and entered your email instead of their own?

    • You can ‘contact Kat’ via the link at the bottom of the page. She has previously mentioned this as the best way to get tech issues resolved.

    • I believe there is a link at the bottom of the email to ‘unsubscribe’.

  19. Sole Woman :

    And now for a quick rant: I just got to field an email from an intern (an INTERN! who, one presumes, wants a JOB!) about his “hormones” (in a teenage boy way), which was a response to a question from me which, let me assure you, HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH HORMONES.

    As an employment lawyer, I would never engage in or endorse discriminatory hiring practice, but I really really REALLY wish my firm would hire another woman (or three) in my department.

    Rant concluded. Sorry for the all-caps yelling.

    • Whoa – did you RAWR at him and let him know that his email was not cool?

      • Sole Woman :

        I know, right? And yes, I did indeed RAWR. I’m this guy’s primary supervisor for the summer, so I felt like I should give him fair warning of behaviors that might negatively affect his review. Unfortunately, I have only have one voice, and I have a feeling that he’s going to get some really different feedback from all the other (male) voices. I get REALLY tired of feeling like I’m the only one here even trying to live in the 21st century — and my diplomacy is starting to get really thin these days.

        Here’s hoping that my voice will sound a little louder once I get “Partner” on my business cards. Honestly.

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