Life as a NQ

Life as a NQ

Sophie-Rose Bowen, Kathryn Willis and Jade Harvey

How well did the firm and your time as a trainee prepare you for the transition to an NQ Solicitor?

The training contract at Beale & Co prepared us really well for qualification. During our time as trainees, we were entrusted with a high level of responsibility and had great exposure to clients from our very first seats. This has given us the confidence to run our own matters as newly qualified solicitors, under direction and support from our matter Partners. Trainees at Beale & Co are exposed to a wide variety of work during the training contract, which definitely helps trainees at Beale & Co to become flexible legal advisors on qualification. The training contract at Beale & Co has particular focus on professional development and this has been invaluable! However, the training does not stop on qualification – the firm is always looking for new ways we can develop our legal knowledge, experience and expertise.

What is life like as a NQ solicitor at Beale & Co?

At Beale & Co you get a lot of responsibility during your training contract, so the transition from a trainee to an NQ solicitor was more of a gradual process leading up to qualification rather than a big jump on qualification. There are however subtle things that are different from being a trainee at the firm. The expectations do change slightly. You have more day to day contact with clients, are given even more responsibility and play a key role in setting the case/project strategy.

As with your training contract, your work is carried out alongside the supervising Partner for the matter, allowing you to receive ongoing feedback to increase your knowledge and further develop your skills as an NQ solicitor. You receive continued support from your colleagues helping you to grow as an all-round lawyer.

What advice would you give a trainee approaching qualification at Beale & Co?

When you are a trainee approaching qualification the best advice we were given was to start thinking and working like an NQ as soon as possible. It is important to show that you can manage your own workload and be relied upon to manage cases, where appropriate, with Partner supervision.

You must show initiative and ensure that you are always one-step ahead when working on a matter.

Attend as many social events, seminars and networking opportunities as possible. You need to show the firm that you are the type of person who will be able to bring in business and can develop client relationships.

You may occasionally find yourself with some spare time on your hands, put this time to good use and consider different topics that you can write articles on not only to increase your knowledge on key topics but also to raise your profile both within the firm and externally.

Be enthusiastic about your career; identify ways to continue to increase your knowledge and experience. Make sure you are the best solicitor you can be.