During my third seat I spent a week along with some other colleagues working out of Osborne Clarke’s impressive Hamburg office as part of the firm’s exchange programme. This is aimed at helping lawyers to build up their internal network and get to know colleagues overseas. The fact that trainees are eligible to partake is a demonstration of Osborne Clarke’s commitment to giving you development opportunities from day one in your career.
I received a very warm welcome from my German colleagues, who were very keen to show us around town and give me an insight into the matters that they were working on. The Hamburg office is in quite a cool and bohemian location so we were able to experience the social side of the city and visit all the amazing restaurants and bars. We were also taken on a boat trip of Hamburg Harbour, which is one of the largest ports in Europe. I was particularly impressed by how many of our colleagues were willing to give up their evenings to play host, which to my mind shows how Osborne Clarke’s friendly and inclusive culture is common across all its offices.
The biggest benefit of my time in Germany has most been felt since I’ve been back in the UK. I now have a much greater understanding of the work done by our European offices and how we can work cross-border so as to better serve our clients’ needs. As a result of the connections I have made with overseas colleagues, I am now able to add value to the work the firm does. For example, I have recently assisted a colleague in Germany obtain UK insolvency advice on behalf of a German client, which involved exchanging emails and holding phone calls in both English and German and acting as a conduit between the UK and German teams.
The Osborne Clarke exchange programme is just one of the great benefits in becoming a trainee at the firm.