Story Time: Your Legal Resume Should Tell A Story

When you look at law firm websites, sometimes it’s really hard to distinguish one firm from another.  There’s a stylized logo, a list of practice areas, attorney biographies, some client testimonials and a running list of accolades or media links.  Many potential clients see Firm A = Firm B = Firm C.  In that algebra equation, a firm can’t win.

A few firms stand out and tell their “story” – the reason that a client should hire you.  For example, they have particularized knowledge in a practice area that makes them a thought leader in the industry or they have a passion for an industry.  When clients see these firms, the message speaks to them.

The problem is that you can’t speak to everyone, so by default, some firms’ marketing speaks to no one.

Apply that principle to your resume.  Are you a general litigator who can handle anything from a slip-and-fall case to a complex multi-jurisdictional matter?  If so, who are you speaking to in your resume?  Unless the reader is looking for the broadest litigation experience possible, the chances are that you are speaking no one.

Your resume has to tell your story – or at least the right narrative for the reader.  You have a chance to tweak your resume to tell a slightly different story each time you send out your resume.  Not doing that is a lost opportunity.  Having a standard resume that attempts to highlight everything you’ve done as an attorney is more likely to speak to no one than the most important person (the reader).  Sell the story behind your skills to demonstrate your passion and expertise and your job search will go much more smoothly!


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