The insight was enjoyable and conducive. Participants were divided into groups of 8-10 to facilitate discussion and feedback between and after sessions. As conversations generally rolled over into mutual and individual experiences in university study and applications, this was a good avenue to network and form bonds in early career stages.
The firm made us feel comfortable, investing in our career growth by allocating trainees to assist us with common trainee tasks which involved an exploration of the building, introduction to how the office works and how to get things done. During the event, fee earners and firm staff were approachable and ready to assist with any queries.
There was much general and individual guidance and support. Partners spoke about personal experiences and views on the firm's distinguishing characteristics and how this affected their practices and daily work while benefiting the firm due to its bearing on client solutions. Their explanations helped to improve my awareness of how the firm functions and delivers its objectives.
The sessions on practice areas and what makes the firm unique help a lot in determining the kinds of firms and working environments may be preferable, and provide good ground for looking into the realities of potential practice areas or sectors of interest, which may assist choices of degree options.
The insight was very well structured, with a good mix of presentations, interactive sessions, personal development activities and collaborative exercises, all of which gave insight into life and work at the firm from different perspectives. We were thus given the opportunity to develop similar skills in different situations e.g. looking for information and putting it in context to respond to tasks assigned.
The insight gave a good learning atmosphere by allowing initiative to develop through the different styles of sessions and the available lawyers in different seats to interact with. While only few of these activities involved interpersonal collaboration sitting in teams helped to reinforce the idea that most things covered in the sessions could be more beneficial with discussion of different ideas.
The firm invested well, with fee earners and graduate recruitment being on hand to answer most questions for most of the programme. The graduate recruitment team held personalised CV workshops which provided plenty of feedback on the dos and don'ts of each individual participant, with at least five minutes being spent on every CV. Trainees available took their time off work and had to stay longer than usual on the day to finish in time for the weekend (it was a Thursday).
The insight covered some types of work trainees did such as looking up articles to research points of law, searching for obscure but relevant material in the library, correct documentation and signing procedures and some mock client engagement. The speed at which these had to be carried out provided insight into how busy work may be.
There were two trainees available for each table of 8 to 10 participants. Partners delivering presentations could be asked questions after or during their three sessions. This covered the firm's two major practice areas (corporate and finance). However there were no associates or other partners, particularly those from more specialist practices e.g. employment or tax.
Sitting in groups provided good interaction with team members on the content of presentations and the activities carried out. This was developed by interacting with two trainees to a team. There was no dedicated networking session, the dining room was small and not all participants could fit in it at the same time, and perspectives from people at different stages of their career in the firm and thus the nature of their work could not be explored more fully.
The programme covered a brief session on pro bono activities and corporate social responsibility such as sponsoring lesser known or smaller charities which require more support to assist their goals.
It was a good programme which gave lots of insight into how a firm works, the firm's special features and how the culture and interactions look like within its walls. This was a good learning experience and it was well worth the time investment from hearing of the individual experiences relayed to us by people working at the firm.
Insight / Vacation Scheme (< 4 Weeks)
4th April 2018