2 December 2019

Trainees and their Supervisors

Senior Associate, Emily Holdstock, and first year Trainee, Tamsin Collingridge, talk to Miri Stickland about the “special relationship” between trainees and their supervisors, including the value that supervisors can bring in mentoring trainees, the feedback and review process and the attributes that are highly valued in Forsters' trainees.

“At Forsters, the trainee supervisors act as the first point of call within the department for any questions from their trainee, ranging from legal questions to queries about how you might go about carrying out a particular task to the sort of practical questions we know trainees might get nervous about asking, like where to hang your coat!”

“There is nothing I wouldn’t delegate to a trainee, from the first drafts of letters to notices to research tasks, but I wouldn’t delegate anything I don’t know how to do myself. It’s always important to put some context around the task the trainee is being asked to do. Ultimately the idea behind being a trainee is to develop into a qualified lawyer so, if you haven’t been taught the context, how can you develop the skills that you need when you are running the matter yourself?”

“For a supervisor, what you want is a trainee who listens, who is willing to get stuck in, asks questions and is interested and enjoying themselves. Trainees with an open mind set tend to be the ones who fly.”

“There is a definite expectation at Forsters that as a trainee you should try and get involved in as many things as you can. That’s not a particularly daunting prospect as there are so many things to do, from the charity and green committees to book club and choir and the list goes on! The type of people Forsters attracts are those who don’t want to just sit at their desk every day and have no outside experience.”

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