You're finishing your second round of interviews. You really enjoyed all the people you met, and can start to see yourself working at this new firm. The excitement is building. As you are ending the interview and approaching the elevator to leave, the final interviewer shakes your hand and says, ''It's been a pleasure meeting you. You'll be hearing from us in the near future.''

Play the Waiting Game as an Offer Slowly Winds Its Way Through the Proper Channels, It's Best to Keep Your Cool

As the elevator doors close, your brain starts running a mile a minute: “Near future?” What does “near future” mean? If they liked me, wouldn’t they say “very soon” or “We want to give you an offer right now”? Uh oh, maybe they didn’t really like me as much as I like them. You suddenly flash back to high school dating, when you would go home, stew, and wait for the phone to ring.

If you’ve had this feeling after an interview, you are certainly among the many. Because so many attorneys are highly careerfocused and a good portion of their identities are defined by their careers, a potential offer is given monumental importance. As a legal recruiter, I spend at least 15 to 30 minutes each day coaching attorneys through the “waiting period,” which is— hands down, without a doubt—the toughest part of the process. This applies to all levels of attorneys—from associates with as little as one year of experience, to partners with as much as 30 years. While there is certainly the niche of high-demand attorneys who are accustomed to having multiple and competing offers, most attorneys find themselves having to play the dreaded waiting game.