Your ultimate aim may be to one day run your very own legal firm, but we all have to start somewhere. In the case of carving out a legal career with the entrepreneurial spin of one day running your own legal firm, there simply isn’t any other route than to go through the academic process of obtaining your law degree, but acquiring the kind of competence to enter the legal field professionally doesn’t end there. You still have to go through training contracts and pupillages as the last obstacle to get over en route to qualification as a solicitor.
This is when the theoretical knowledge you acquired will be expressed in a real-world context, with your chance to learn the ins and outs of the legal field playing out in a real law firm’s day-to-day operations over the following two years. You’ll gain exposure to the inner workings of a law firm’s different departments, which include both the non-contentious and contentious areas of practice. You’ll also get the opportunity to undergo training under the tutelage of an expert operating professionally in the field.
The training contract you’ll get will enable you to pass the PSC (Professional Skills Course), for which you will need to have accumulated adequate experience in professional standards and client care, communication skills, advocacy and business skills. Naturally, if you want to follow the best developmental trajectory, you’ll need to pick out a law firm that’s just right for you. LawCareers.Net is a great place to start the search as they have a great range of options through their training contract search.
Once your list of the firms you’d be happy to work with has been compiled, in order for them to reciprocate your interest in them, you need to find a way to stand out from what will undoubtedly be a big crowd vying for their attention. Expert legal practice company with 30 years of experience in the field, Bindman Solicitors, has some great advice on how to fend off all the competition to get selected for what is an extremely important training contract.
Be picky about the firms you choose
While you definitely don’t want to place limits on yourself by applying to just one firm, you need to be selective as well in applying to many firms. You do after all have your own requirements so it’s okay to be a bit choosy. Talk to a legal recruiter similar to Alex Gotch, for instance, who can help you find a firm that matches your requirements and preferences. They can connect you with the right firms and also provide you with valuable information and advice.
Ensure to meet all the criteria set out by the firm
This is a bit obvious, but you’ll be surprised just how many applicants effectively waste their time and effort by applying to positions for which they don’t meet the criteria.
There’s no substitute for experience
Answer phones at a law firm if you have to as any form of practical experience helps.
Demonstrate your work ethic
If it means you have to sacrifice a bit of your holidays to shadow a solicitor while you’re still studying, so be it — nothing beats work ethic in the legal field and you have to find a way to demonstrate yours.