I worked at Schillings International LLP, a reputation management law firm based in London. I worked on matters concerning defamation law, human rights issues, harassment, intellectual property and more. I gained a useful insight into contentious law in practice – something which I have found particularly useful in my litigation seat. Being familiar with the Court's processes is a real advantage in a fast-paced and time-pressured seat.
The best moment of my training contract so far has been attending the Players Contract Conference 2016, a football event at which a variety of speakers discussed issues such as the effect of Brexit on football, the impact of Financial Fair Play (or lack of) and the future of sponsorship in football. I actually ended up having lunch with the head of in-house legal counsel at UEFA and quizzed him on a variety of sports-related matters. I got to attend this event, as well as several others, due to my involvement with the sports sector here at Howard Kennedy, which is at a really exciting point in its development.
My personal interests, as you may have guessed from the above, include sports. I am an Arsenal season ticket holder and play as often as I can, both with friends and for the Howard Kennedy football team. Playing for the firm is a great way to meet people, exercise and have some fun – though the litigators among us can get a little competitive! I also box regularly (not competitively but it still hurts) and travel as often as possible.
My top tip to applicants is to research the firm as much as you can. Not just the generic practice areas and size – know something specific about where you are applying.
For instance, when I applied here I knew the name of a partner at the firm that had worked on a variety of cases I came across as a paralegal, so I emphasised my desire to work with him in my application given that he is a leading expert in the field. I also managed to use the fact that the firm represents about 94% of Venture Capital Trusts that come to market in the United Kingdom in my interview to demonstrate why I wanted to work there (it shows the firm is a market leader where it wants to be).
These sorts of things really make you stand out to the recruitment team and show a genuine desire to work here.