My reasons for choosing Pinsent Masons go right back to my vacation placement here in 2007. Everyone was very friendly, and I was surprised to be given meaningful work to do, with real responsibility. I’ve been on placements where you felt you were in the way a bit, but that’s not the case here.
At interview stage, the firm definitely came across as modern, forward-looking and going places, all of which directly appealed to me. They emphasised teamwork, but without compromising on individuality. I genuinely felt the firm’s ambition and direction was aligned with what I wanted.
I spent my first seat in the Commercial Projects Department. The work was incredibly varied – on any given day I could be drafting advice notes or minutes, or verifying documents. I was also involved in everything from contract amendments and drafting clauses through to organising events. You are there to support the work of the more senior fee earners and so by working across the department with a number of people you get a really great insight into different aspects of what the team does.
The toughest challenge so far? Standing up and presenting to the whole department for thew first time – my heart was really pounding. It was good experience and great exposure, but also incredibly nerve-wracking – get something wrong, and it’s in front of everyone!
I was fortunate to have joined the London office shortly after the move to Crown Place, our global headquarters, ever since the move there's been a great deal of buzz around the drive to procure new work and grow our client base. The direction of the firm is definitely onwards and upwards, and the merger with McGrigors earlier this year illustrates this perfectly.
I’d say that to succeed here, a graduate needs to be commercially aware – that is, you should generally have an understanding of your clients’ business, and the wider commercial world. Also, students sometimes get so wrapped up in their subject that they forget that a law firm itself is a business, with a business model of its own.