Recently we caught up with a few of our Trainees from Cardiff to find out how they ended up in Law and how practical experience really helped them with their Training Contracts. Whilst doing this we found out a bit more about what they think is the most important and wanted to share it with you all!
What advice would you give someone going through the Training Contract process?
I think I would say to try to relax as much as you can to enable you to be yourself. I know that is easier said than done! Looking back, I can see that you are being assessed as a person and whether you could contribute to the firm, so don’t try to be something you’re not.
Whether you are completing a task at the assessment centre or being asked a question in an interview, as long as you are being yourself there is really nothing more you can do to show what you could bring to the firm – and that is what you are being assessed on. It is also comforting to know that your assessors are there to help you be yourself so there is nothing to be afraid of when it comes to the assessment centres and final interviews. As you progress through the process, you will know that your qualifications and ability are good enough, so it is important to relax, let your personality shine through and show your assessor what you can bring to the firm.
That’s an interesting one! When it comes to assessment centres I’d say ignore other people! There are people alongside you who seem to have accomplished a lot when they’re talking in the assessment centre. I worked somewhere for 18 months and went to their assessment centre and it was incredibly intimidating! I was surrounded by applicants talking about what area of law they worked in and remember being incredibly intimidated. People have a habit of talking up accomplishments and making it sound so much bigger than it is, it was the same thing here, a lot of people were talking about different areas they did and the experience they had and I remember thinking I wasn’t sure if I was qualified enough to be here. So I’d say genuinely, ignore what other people say and believe that you belong there as much as anyone else.
I’d also say don’t give up, you’ll get there, to myself I’d probably suggest get a bit more work experience when younger and to get my life together a bit sooner, maybe prioritise career and progression a bit!
Keep at it. It may sound like some motivational quote you see plastered across your Facebook timeline, but Keep at it; it is all worth it in the end!
However, I’m not going to say that that’s how I felt going all the way through… there were moments when I did almost give up on becoming a solicitor altogether.
When you’re working in the law there is always the option and temptation to stay put and to stay as a paralegal. When I worked as a paralegal, I worked in child protection law for my Local Authority. Although it was a difficult area of law, I really enjoyed my paralegal work so considered staying at that level and at that field. At one point, I even considered going outside of the law completely.
However, I’m really glad that I didn’t give up – if you love the law and have the drive to progress, it doesn’t matter how tough the process is you will enjoy it and ultimately get to your end goal.
I wish you all good luck in your forthcoming applications!
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