Top 10 Posts of 2009

We’re still on an abbreviated posting schedule (don’t forget the holiday open thread!), but here are some of our top posts from 2009… after the jump!

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Idiotproof Your Summer: Further Etiquette and “No Duh” Tips For Your Internship

how-to-be-a-great-internWe’ve had a great time reading the comments on our “what clothes to buy for your summer internship” post on Monday — it brings to mind so, so many memories of summers past where we’d think, HOW in the name of God did X get through high school, let alone college, with this thick a skull?  Especially in this economy, you need more than just the smarts and scores that got you past the admissions office — you need survival skills and street savvy.  And, in case it needs to be said:  No summer should feel entitled to anything. Here are some from our “greatest hits” list — please add more in comments. Pictured: Clowns, originally uploaded to Flickr by Earls37a.

If your company or firm invites you to a closed-door meeting of any kind — deposition, mediation, etc. — please do not check your Blackberry.  Seriously, I’ve sat in depositions with six people, and the partners and the associates and the witness are taking the day’s events seriously — and the summer associate is sitting there checking their Blackberry.  Tell your secretary where you are; you can check your Blackberry when the partner does.  And yo, that game of Brickbreaker can wait. [Read more…]

Building Your Wardrobe for a Summer Internship

building your wardrobe for a summer internship

2018 Update: We still stand by much of this advice on building your wardrobe for a summer internship (and links will be updated very soon), but note that we’ve also started a new series on how to build a work wardrobe at specific stores, and our four-week work outfit challenge may be helpful for you if you’re looking for work outfit ideas. If you’re going to be a summer associate at a law firm, we have a great guide for summer associates.

We’ve had a number of requests for how to build your wardrobe for a summer internship, so ladies, this one’s for you!

Suits. Yes, you will need more than one suit, but not as many as you think. For example, readers asked if they needed 10-15 suits (and we’re hoping the person asking if they needed 100 suits either made a typo or was exaggerating). We would say you need about 3-5 suits, to be worn whenever you know for sure you’ll be seeing a partner, executive, or other VIP that day. Keep an extra suit in your office if at all possible. Your basic suits should be:

1) Your standard interview suit in black, navy, or gray. Hopefully you took our advice and got it in a seasonless fabric, and you bought a suit that had multiple matching pieces (e.g., a jacket, pants, skirt, and a dress). Get them drycleaned as soon as they begin to smell, or approximately every 4-5 wearings.

2) As many other suits that your budget can afford that are like your interview suit, but in other colors — these suits will last you for several years, so it’s well worth it to invest $500-$1000 in suiting. If you can’t afford suits as nice as your interview suit, check out sales as well as: [Read more…]

The Hunt: Appropriate Bags for Summer Associates

The Best Bags for Summer Associates | CorporetteWe got this request in from a reader, and thought we might resurrect an old feature — The Hunt — in which we look for a great basic, available now, in a variety of price points. Here’s the request:

As an incoming summer associate at a large NY firm, I’ve been wondering – what kind of bag would be appropriate? I’ve been told that Longchamp is too casual, and would be interested to hear your thoughts on it. I don’t want to break the bank before I’ve even made my first paycheck, but would like something nice and versatile that will last a long time. Any thoughts would be appreciated!

We would actually disagree with that — we think Longchamp is fine for a big tote bag. It’s functional (fits a ton of papers), is made well (is strong enough to carry a ton of papers) and — especially if you get the black on black versions available in Canada or at the physical stores in New York City, quite appropriate for work. [Read more…]