Succeeding in Employability during a Pandemic

Succeeding in employability during a pandemic was always going to be challenging. In this blog post, Hadyeh Tarigat, a recent graduate of Derby Law School gives her top hints and tips on how to make the most of the opportunities that Covid 19 has provided for law students.

Like everyone else, I have found this pandemic a challenge. . However, fortunately I have managed to make it productive and take advantage of not having to spend much time on traveling, for various reasons, during the day.

Therefore, I thought it might be useful to share some tips which I have been employing with you that I have found can help ensure productivity whilst protecting your wellbeing during the lockdown.

  1. Due to the uncertainty, make plans for 1 month (I usually do for longer but not during the outbreak), break it down to 4 weeks and each week to 7 days.
  2. Make sure you have a routine and stick to your daily plans.
  3. Include some forms of exercise for at least 45 minutes in your daily plan (etc; walking/yoga/dancing), regard your exercise the same as your tooth brushing. I cannot stress you enough about its positive impact.
  4. Leave enough room for amendment/catchup in case something comes up unexpectedly.
  5. Before going to bed make your “to do list”, based on your daily plan, for tomorrow so your mind is ready to start when you wake up.
  6. Prioritise your works/deadlines.
  7. To keep your stress level at bay, stay focussed and committed to get the necessary tasks done when they need to be done.
  8. Meditate for 5-10 minutes per day, preferably before bed or straight after you wake up.
  9. If you do not need to be at work remotely and at a certain time, work out what time of the day/night is best for you to do the work that needs more concentration. For example, I have been able to focus better early afternoon and evenings due to childcare responsibilities.
  10. Take advantage of the virtual world and participate in online events in relation to what you do. This is a very unique opportunity.
  11. If you can, do some voluntary work.
  12. Finally, ***Eat well****

It is very easy to lose focus under stress; therefore, this is a great time to master your management skills whilst having to multitask. Take advantage of all the opportunities and in fact, as they say, “turn the whole situation in to an opportunity”.

One thing that I am very grateful for, is that over recent years companies have greatly adjusted the way they connect with each other. They have begun connecting more widely, both nationally and internationally. This creates wider opportunities for those who seek them.

As a law student and a single parent, I would not have the opportunity to attend at any of the events that international or some national commercial law firms may have held in London and they all seamed unreachable to me. Law firms have started to hold online events in relation to the process of training contracts. Everyone could have a chance to participate in and benefit from these events regardless of their location and as I said this a very unique opportunity.

Before the lockdown I searched a few firms and registered with them. One of the firms is Shearman & Sterling and I received emails from them about their virtual events in relation to training contracts, applications and interviews. All the events were unique experience and gave me the taste of how such big firms proceed when it comes to training contracts.

Law firms have also been encouraged to use different social media platforms such as Instagram. This is an easy and accessible way of connecting with top 50 UK law firms.

All the online events that I have been attending have consolidated my knowledge in regards with both the process of training contracts and the way that I need to operate towards a successful legal career. Shoosmiths, for example, is one the firms that I have engaged with a lot over lockdown, attending several talks on the process of training contracts, as well as several Q&A sessions.

Among my studies and attending the virtual events I also have managed to use my other skills and contribute to society by the way of preparing scrubs for NHS workers. It has been very rewarding to see that my contribution is making a difference even though a small difference.

All of the above been done whilst I have been performing my duties as a single parent.

I really hope that my tips will become of use for you and if you have any questions, please let me know and I will do my best to be of use.

Haddy Tarighat