What do you wish you knew before starting your Training Contract?

You’re not expected to know everything

When starting your training contract you will quickly realise that no one expects you to have all the answers. People will take the time to explain tasks and ensure you understand what is being asked of you. It is important not to be scared to ask questions and to understand you are bound to make mistakes during your training contract.

Working remotely can still be fun

Starting a training contract during Covid-19 is daunting and there is a worry that you’ll miss out on the social side of the firm. However, the firm has put on virtual trainee lunches, coffee catch-ups and online socials. Trainees can still meet up, as long as social distancing and government guidelines are being followed. Although working from home will never be quite the same as office life the firm are keen to ensure that trainees still get the same quality of supervision and client contact.

Knowledge is key

Knowledge sharing is very important at the firm and you will receive knowledge updates relevant to the departments and sectors you work in. Each team has specialist knowledge lawyers who give training sessions and are a great point of contract for any technical questions. There is also great sources of information on the intranet and a host of precedents to use.

A work/life balance does exist

No one is expecting you to work long hours for the sake of it. Some days will be busier than others and it does vary team to team but the general attitude is that it’s important to switch off and enjoy your evenings. There is also lots of opportunities to get involved in other Osborne Clarke commitments, such as the firm’s diversity and wellbeing groups and CSR and pro-bono initiatives. It’s nice to focus on something non-work related and is a great way to get to know new people in the firm.

Everyone is friendly and supportive

Osborne Clarke is non-hierarchical and everyone at the firm is approachable and willing to help. People are keen to talk about the area of law they work in and answer any questions you might have. The firm also puts a real emphasis on wellbeing and is ensuring everyone is working comfortably at home and has the support that they need.

Written by Liz Foley, Trainee Associate at Osborne Clarke.

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